home jobs contact us
Our Clients:
Browse by Sport
Find us on ASAP sports on Facebook ASAP sports on Twitter
ASAP Sports RSS Subscribe to RSS
Click to go to
ASAP Sports e-Brochure View our


July 21, 2006

Chris DiMarco


STEWART McDOUGALL: Ladies and gentlemen, Chris DiMarco, 65 for a total of 9 under par, leading in the clubhouse. That's a lovely round. The scores are only going to get lower this week, do you think?

CHRIS DiMARCO: I don't think they liked the scores yesterday because they had some pins in some unbelievable spots today, and I was fortunate, I made putting is the key, and I made some good 25 , 30 footers for birdies.

The course is starting to firm up again. I think that rain really softened it up and made it easier. And the wind isn't really howling, so you're able to score around here. There's some tough holes and you just have to keep it out of the bunkers.

Q. Just wondering, obviously the Ryder Cup is very important to you, as is winning your first major. Is there any part of you that balances that in your mind as you're here this week?

CHRIS DiMARCO: Two more good rounds and I could take care of both of them, hopefully. That would be the right thing to do.

Ryder Cup is huge, it's been a goal of mine since early in the year. I started out great this year; I won at Abu Dhabi. Unfortunately the money doesn't count to our Money List, and the win doesn't count toward the Ryder Cup. I injured myself and was basically out about it cost me probably about 12 weeks, all in all, coming back early and swinging really bad and searching, just searching for something.

I switched putters and did a lot of things which I haven't done in seven years. And this week and last week I just went back to what I did and stopped thinking so much and just hit the ball where you're supposed to hit it and putt it where you're supposed to putt it. I did a lot of good things last week, I just didn't score real well. This week the scoring is back.

Q. I know you're passionate about both, but what would maybe mean more to you, getting back on that Ryder Cup team or winning your first major?

CHRIS DiMARCO: Obviously winning a major would always solidify your career, there's no doubt about that, so that would be pretty special. Playing for your country is probably the greatest thing I've ever done in golf. So I'd have to say playing for the country. It would mean that much for me to come back here and go to the K Club and be part of that team. I know what it's been like the last three teams I've been on. Once you've been on a team, you don't want to miss any. It's nice that my form is back with some weeks to go. Hopefully I can get some points, as I need, and if not, at least show Tom that my game is back and I'm ready to go.

I know he knows mentally that the drive and the competitiveness in me is there, but he has to see some signs of good golf, and hopefully these last two days, and hopefully that will carry over to the weekend.

Q. Did you consider not playing The Open? How much do you feel your mom out there?

CHRIS DiMARCO: Well, I certainly have had a great peace about me this week. I never considered not playing The Open. Obviously if it was last week I would have, for sure, if it happened last week.

My mom has always been a huge supporter of me. She followed me around so many times, drove me around as a junior player everywhere. She would be absolutely pissed off if I didn't play. It would bother her. So knowing what her wishes would be, she certainly wouldn't want me to sit home what would I do at home? There's nothing I can do.

I have my dad here with me. Walking between the ropes is absolutely therapeutic for me. Walking outside the ropes for him, me playing well is absolutely therapeutic for him. So this week so far these last two days, no matter what happens has been, in that peace, in the whole thing with my mom being gone has been extremely good for both of us.

I know that usually when she comes to a tournament like this she can't see much, but I know she's got the best seat in the house now.

Q. Can you detail for us your injury, specifically what it was and what kind of problems it caused you, and when did you start feeling better about it?

CHRIS DiMARCO: Yeah, March 18th I was skiing and I fell down, had a backpack on and I had a phone that basically kidney punched me and bruised my ribs, lower back, and basically I couldn't swing. I had bad rotation going back. I don't have the biggest shoulder turn as it is, and I just I felt, because it was Augusta, I needed to try to play and I absolutely persevered through a lot of pain.

But in the meantime while I was trying to play through it I worked myself into a couple of bad habits trying to play back early. Your swing is not going to let you swing in pain. It took me a long time to get back. I put a lot of pressure on my putting, thought my putting was the problem, switched putters for four weeks, which like I said, I haven't done. And basically tried all these different putting my hands forward, this and that, my swing. And basically I just needed time to heal.

I would say I'm 95 percent I feel it a little bit when I sleep. If I turn really, really hard, not in my swing, but anywhere else, I can feel it. Not pain, I can just feel it. But I really feel like I'm able to fire through the ball again, and I think that's what I wasn't able to do. And obviously seeing some putts go in makes my back feel a lot better.

Q. Where were you skiing?

CHRIS DiMARCO: I was skiing at Snowmass.

Q. Tiger is I think at 12 right now. Can you just talk about trying to chase him in a major championship and especially on a course like this?

CHRIS DiMARCO: You know, what's great about this golf course, it's been noted that everybody says he doesn't drive the ball real well. Well, you know what, he can go back to hitting his irons, hitting 2 irons and working the shots, which, you know what, is great to me. I love that. I wish our fairways in the States were like this. We tend to have balls wherever they land they plug. It's nice to have fairway bunkers again. We don't have fairway bunkers, we have rough bunkers. It's nice when they're this hard and the ball can roll to places that are bad. We don't have that. And you can on a 450 yard hole you don't have to bomb a driver and hope you don't have mud on your ball so I can hit a 6 iron without going all over the place. It's nice to hit a 2 iron, if you hit a 3 iron it bounces up there. It's nice, it's golf, instead of trying to grip it and rip it. I feel like the courses we play in the States are too soft.

Q. Your dad said you told him you wanted him to come to the tournament?

CHRIS DiMARCO: I made him come. I told him Friday night, we had all the services Friday night. I said, "You're going to the British." He said, "I don't know if I can." I said, "I already bought a ticket, it's not refundable." I know how much he likes money, he doesn't like to waste my money, either. He wasn't going to do it.

And he was a little sad coming over, obviously with every right to be. It's been tough. He cries, he stops crying, it's great. I think that's the one good thing that's great about him. He's very emotional and he gets it out, and it's good for him. I told him you can cry all you want, don't worry about it, my shoulder is always here.

Q. I heard you say that you get some of your competitive fire, this is in the past, from your dad. What's something that you've taken a few things you've taken from your mom?

CHRIS DiMARCO: Well, my mom is extremely competitive, too. She always was, too. She just didn't have the athletic ability to back it up. I've said this to a bunch of people, I haven't met too many people where she every person that she met, she touched them somehow. I don't think anybody that's ever met her walked away saying I don't like that woman. So she just taught me to be a good person, to be a nice person, to be nice to people, not to be I try not to have people walk away from me and go, man, that guy is a whatever. He's a good guy. And I take that from my mom.

She was a very special lady. She never rubbed anybody the wrong way, she never gossiped about anybody. She just went with the flow. And obviously the support she had for me was great. I had a loving, caring mother and father. All the memories I have of her are great.

Q. Just getting back to the other question. When Tiger is ahead of you with two to play at a major, how daunting is that when you see the way he's playing, he's holed out early in the day, he's obviously hitting fairways and greens, when you know how successful he is at closing?

CHRIS DiMARCO: Tiger at his best is hard to beat. Tiger at a course he likes at his best is really hard to beat. All I can do is go out and try to play the best golf I can play. I know a couple of years ago I took him right down to the wire at a course he loves, at a course he was hitting in the fairway on. Anything can happen in 36 holes.

I can't expect to go out and shoot 70, 70 the next two days and expect that to do it. I'm going to have to put another low round out there. It's accessible, you can go out there and do it. He's the greatest player in the world, no doubt, at a course he likes, at a tournament he's defending.

He's going through what I went through, he lost his father a couple of months ago. He is tough to beat, bottom line. But it's doable, it's been done and it's doable.

Q. Knowing that you need to post that low score at least once in the next two days, does it affect how you approach your game the next two days?

CHRIS DiMARCO: No. I have basically hit a lot of irons off tees. And this is, I guess, the yardage, 7200 yard course, 7100 yard course, I'm hitting a lot of 2 and 1 irons off of them. If you play early enough in the morning, the wind goes one way. I played the first nine holes into the wind, I played 10 and it switched around, I played 11 through 18 into the wind, but when you're into the wind it's almost good. You can control your spin, the ball is not getting away from you downwind.

Q. The sense of peace you said you had out there, is that something that sort of colored your round to an extent? You said you felt very peaceful out there; is that a better feeling than you often have? Did it keep you sort of on course, where you don't want to be too jumpy?

CHRIS DiMARCO: A couple of weeks ago reality set in. The reality is I'm playing a game. It's not life. Life was two weeks ago. And bad shots are it's a bad shot. It's not the end of the world. A missed putt is a missed putt, it's not the end of the world.

I think everything is in perspective. And I think I have a good sense about where I'm at and what I'm trying to do, and I'm not getting overly upset with bad shots, I'm just at a good frame of mind and good peace.

Q. When did your mother die, and also could you just tell us some stories? She said she was driving you, was that Long Island?

CHRIS DiMARCO: No, actually it was July 4th when she passed.

Q. If you could tell us about her in regard to your golf.

CHRIS DiMARCO: She used to travel around when I was an amateur player. She actually, after a couple of weeks playing like the Northeast Amateur and the Porter Cup, little amateur cups, the Western, I wasn't going to play, I was ready to come home and she said, "I'll come out." She walked around 36 holes, I won the tournament, she walked around, and the next U.S. Open qualifier, she drove the cart for me.

She always made me my mom and dad gave me the opportunity to play this game, without a doubt. And nothing pleased her more than when I played well.

Q. Do you remember things she said to you?

CHRIS DiMARCO: It was positive. She was the most optimistic person I ever met in my life. When I first got on Tour and she used to do all my traveling, she always had me have a Saturday night stay, because she was so optimistic I was going to make the cut. And on Friday night I said why did you do that, I want to go home. That was just her being optimistic, and that was just how she was.

Q. In an ideal hypothetical annual schedule for you golfers, what would the ratio of these kind of courses to typical American courses be to your schedule?

CHRIS DiMARCO: I'd like to see more of these in the States, I really would. It's so much fun to play. I know TPC was meant to be played like this course, hard and fast, the ball running into the pine straw and into the trees and into some of those moguls they have out there, instead of the rough being seven inches and you just chop it out. Tampa plays a lot like that. Tampa is a great course, one of the favorites of all the players because of that. It's such an equalizer, because it doesn't favor the bombers if the fairways are hard and fast, because it makes the ball run into the trouble.

And when we're playing courses where the ball is hitting and literally your ball mark is a foot from your ball, it makes the fairways that much wider. And Vijay said it last year or year and a half ago, whatever, he said he has to hit it as far as he can on every hole because then he can hit a wedge on the green from the rough.

Until we do something about it, it's not going to make any difference. Until you have the balls go 20 yards off line, they might not hit drivers. For me, I was just telling Geoff today, Ogilvy, I said, it seems like it's been a long time since I ever hit a 3 wood off a par 4 tee. I feel like I hit 14 drivers, every round of golf we play, every course we play, because it seems every course we play it's 300 yards longer and the fairways are soft. And when you've got six par 4s over 470 with no roll, you have to hit driver.

Q. Seeing Tiger Woods' name at the top of the leaderboard, what kind of effect does it have on you, and is it different now than it might have been some years ago?

CHRIS DiMARCO: I did answer that earlier, but Tiger Woods is hard to beat anywhere, especially when he's got the lead on a course he likes at a tournament he loves. It's going to be tough. But I don't think there's 155 other guys that are ready to go home and say, "Here's the trophy, Tiger." I think we're all going to try to give it a shot.

Q. Can we get mom and dad's name?

CHRIS DiMARCO: My mom's name was Norma, my dad's name is Rich.

End of FastScripts.

About ASAP SportsFastScripts ArchiveRecent InterviewsCaptioningUpcoming EventsContact Us
FastScripts | Events Covered | Our Clients | Other Services | ASAP in the News | Site Map | Job Opportunities | Links
ASAP Sports, Inc. | T: 1.212 385 0297