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July 16, 2004

Rick Rhoden


THE MODERATOR: Questions for Rick.

Q. Pretty eventful round, six birdies, four bogeys, a double.

RICK RHODEN: I don't have remember having a round like that around here. I started out good, and I had eight points left for I think five holes.

I hit a drive on 6, my driver, just had a problem with my neck, my driver, which is usually my best club has been my worst. So it went over the bunker, up in the rough, actually had a pretty good lie. I had probably 120 yards and I was afraid of hitting it long there because it's real steep and I just decelerated, clanked it in the water and got a double. Doubles in this format kill you.

So, I putted great today. I think I 3-putted twice but I putted great. The greens were really fast, probably as fast as they have ever been. If you get above them you are just tapping it down there. I had like three or four feet by the hole for par. I putted good, made some nice birdie putts.

For the way I played 23 points is good, a lot better than last year when I think I had 15.

Q. Looking at the leaderboard, any surprises up there?

RICK RHODEN: Not really. You expect Danny to play good. Billy Joe is one of those kind of guys that can really get it going and tear it up. He's capable of eagles and birdies. Looks like he's playing pretty good.

It's two more days. Nice weather today, the course is the best it's been. So hopefully I start hitting my driver good on the back and get home, get some ice on my neck, maybe I'll be able to come out and play better tomorrow.

Q. How does it feel to play two tournaments back-to-back?

RICK RHODEN: I haven't been playing much. This is only the second round I've played since last Sunday. I just can't do much. I can't go out and hit balls. I probably hit 15 balls today and that was it. That's the biggest problem, I can't go work on anything. I can work on chipping and putting if I want. I'm putting it better than I've ever putting it, so that's probably why.

Q. Does it limit you one way or another with swings or trying to get through pain?

RICK RHODEN: It seems like I can get through a cut shot better, and that's not my normal shot, like I can swing through it better. My normal shot, a lot of times I get around and just don't get out through it good, especially if the ball is on the ground. If it's on a tee, I've got a chance.

You know, I know the course well. Most of us know it pretty good, and just got to be really careful on a few of these holes that you don't go long. I mean, they are fast right now. 11 and 13, you get past the hole, balls are really quick.

18, I was right of the pin and had a few pins, on these little bank knolls, and 14 was like that. I probably made four putts today from four or five feet for par, just on balls that I hit by the hole, just went by the hole.

Q. Was it 70 that you won with last year?

RICK RHODEN: 75, I think. I started out with 15 last year -- you get six birdies, you should be somewhere between 25 and 30 points I think. Six birdies and -- six birdies, I think you shoot six birdies have 12 pars, that's 30; right? So, yeah, a couple bogeys in there, you should be between 25 and 30. Today I wasn't, but this format, it was good for me today. I only shot even par, 1-under, but I have 23 points, so it worked out good.

Q. What do you expect over the weekend, not so much from yourself but the event?

RICK RHODEN: I think it's great. There's people all over the golf course. It's got to be the most people we've ever had here, I know it is.

You know, we've got a lot of guys that are capable of playing good. You know, you look up on the board, sometimes I don't know how good the board is, but like Billy Joe had 15 after nine, I think. You try not to watch it, but the good thing about this course is that you always know if you're close in the hunt, when you come down to 16 and 18, if you hit good drives, you've got a shot for something good to happen.

Today I birdied 18. I think I bogeyed 16 from the middle of the fairway. But that opportunity is there to make up points, whether you do or not, but you know it's there. You could be playing a mediocre round, a lot of pars and all of a sudden go birdie, birdie and at the end you've got six points and you're 20-somewhere.

It's going to take 70 points, I'm pretty sure, in the low 70s to win, unless somebody goes crazy. I think that's probably what it will take.

End of FastScripts.

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