August 2, 2006
GRAND BLANC, MICHIGAN
LARRY PECK: Good morning, everybody. Thank for coming in. I'm Larry Peck from Buick, and before we get started here with these two gentlemen sitting to my left, we have a very special announcement to make today, and with that I'd like it introduce the general manager of Buick, the honorary tournament chairman, Mr. Steve Shannon. Come on up.
STEVE SHANNON: Thank you very much, Larry.
It's great to be with you all today. You know when you're a car company just 103 years old, you care an awful lot about history and tradition. And when you're the longest standing PGA TOUR sponsor going back to 1958, even more, so it's my pleasure to announce today that Buick is officially extending its relationship through 2010 with Warwick Hills Golf and Country Club for the Buick Open. Terrific group, terrific course, outstanding volunteer group. Right on down the line, the whole checklist of what would be a great place to continue to run our tournament.
We're very excited to make this announcement today through 2010 Buick Open, we'll be back at Warwick Hills. Thank you very much.
Q. Was the contract up after this tournament season?
LARRY PECK: Yes, the contract was over after this tournament. We've extended it in effect through 2007 for four years through 2010.
Q. Did you seriously look at any place else?
STEVE SHANNON: I'll answer that by saying we're especially certain that we wanted it here. We did that; like any good businessman, you pause a little bit and take a look if we're going to do something different. If we go through the list of all the reasons why we want to be here, I feel better about the decision because we did a bit of due diligence and came back around to this is exactly the place we want to be.
We looked at all the criteria you want and this is the place we wanted to be.
Q. Can you tell us any of the courses you looked at?
STEVE SHANNON: No, I can't. We're 100% happy to be at Warwick Hills.
Q. When was the deal finalized?
STEVE SHANNON: It's been very certain going to happen for some time. But the whole process and the signatures, I'd probably say early this morning was the last official signature, so just in time. Thank you all again.
LARRY PECK: We have a special treat for us today. As you know Jerome Bettis joined us for the Pro Am, played with Tiger, and Jerome is moving onto a new career in sportscasting. We thought it would be enjoyable for him to have his first interview be with Tiger Woods. So let him share a little bit about that round today. Jerome?
JEROME BETTIS: Tiger, after seeing the British Open and seeing you tear apart the field without a driver, driver is in the bag this week?
TIGER WOODS: It is in the bag. Used it a few times today which was nice. It's actually a lot bigger than my 2 iron. That's one of things that I had to get over when I came back from the British Open was practicing with it because I didn't really practice with it much over there. I hit a few balls with on the range, but basically hitting 2 irons and 3 wood and putting it down behind the golf ball, you start realizing how big these heads are.
JEROME BETTIS: What challenge does this course present for you? Coming off the British Open is a totally different style, what type of challenge is this week?
TIGER WOODS: Well, the greens are softer, a lot softer. They are actually making ballmarks. So the entire time at the British Open, I got there on Saturday, so from Saturday through Sunday, I made three ballmarks. So a little different than this golf course.
This golf course is a little bit softer. The greens are a lot quicker here. They are in perfect shape. It's just amazing each and every year how good the greens are here. One of the best we play on all year. You know you're going to have to make a few birdies on this golf course because all the par 5s are reachable. All of the par 4s, you can come close to driving, if not drive. Overall you know you have to make a bunch of birdies and go out there and get it done.
JEROME BETTIS: The last question is, you know, pretty much a lay up: How did your playing partner, some big guy, overweight guy, Jerome Bettis, how did he play today?
TIGER WOODS: (Silence)
JEROME BETTIS: There are cameras here.
TIGER WOODS: Yeah, and a mic. (Laughter.)
Yeah, Jerome, the guy is obviously he's an athlete. He's a hell of an athlete. What amazed me is his touch around the greens. Some of the shots he hit, great putter.
Yeah, it's a little bit difficult hitting the ball; his chest is a little bit bigger than most of us out on Tour. So he's quite an athlete and obviously it translates into golf. He can play this sport. You can see over time that he's going to be a really good golfer and just a matter of just getting the reps in and getting the time in. Because obviously during the season, you don't normally play, can't really get out of bed. It will be nice for all of us to have Jerome playing the game of golf because it will be a great addition.
End of FastScripts.