February 27, 2001
LEE PATTERSON: Thank you so much for coming and spending some time with us. I know you had a nice consistent start over in Australia and I think you are Top-10 on the Award of Merit there. A couple of thoughts about the start of your year and how you come seeing to the PGA TOUR.
GREG NORMAN: Start of my year is pretty much an indication of the efforts I have put in, Lee. Towards the end of last year I started feeling much better, much stronger in my hip and my shoulder and basically my doctor told me I would be feeling -- really the fruits of the award should come around Christmastime and that is exactly -- he called it to a tee. So I have the ability now to practice longer. I get enthusiastic now because I can see and feel better. And what happened in Australia was indicative of that. I have practiced hard. I am still keen to play. Even though I am a year older I am still keen to play out there. I feel like I am feeling fitter and stronger than what I was this time last year. I am actually looking forward to this season believe it or not for the first time in three, four, five years. I am looking forward to playing a whole season.
Q. Are you going to play more or less this year over here, still stay around 15, 18?
GREG NORMAN: I should be playing about that. I am actually going to probably be playing Bay Hill which I haven't done in years. My schedule right now next six, seven weeks is obviously here, then Bay Hill, TPC, Atlanta, Masters, maybe Hilton Head and maybe Houston. So that is a lot of golf for me early in the year. If I feel the way I feel right now I don't see any reason why that would change. I might drop one, maybe Houston or Hilton Head, but if I have my choice I love Hilton Head so I would go there.
Q. When was the last time you played five in a row?
GREG NORMAN: My wife says that same thing, we can't remember, to tell you the truth. That is a lot of golf for me. That is why I think Houston and Hilton Head are going to be the swinging ones. I'd like to go back to some events I haven't played in a long time, Bay Hill being one, Houston is another one, my family is there, my in-laws, my brother-in-law, stuff like that, so it gives me an opportunity to go and see them. Houston I haven't been to for a very long time, so...
Q. Is there a shot out there that you are executing better because your health situation has gotten better?
GREG NORMAN: Yeah, I think just my stability over the ball. I have got a better rotation, a better base. I can load up my right hip a little bit more successfully now than what I did before. I feel that distancewise and strengthwise it is all starting to come back. It has really taken me -- I started working around October, November pretty hard so it has taken had to six months to get to where I am right now. So I would say more stability, not really a particular shot, but stability over the ball is probably the most crucial thing that I have noticed.
Q. Is this desire to play a heavy beginning of the season directly just a result of just feeling better or are there other reasons that you want to be busy?
GREG NORMAN: No, direct result. I can wake up in the morning after a six to eight hour practice session and play golf without hurting the next day. I just enjoy it again. I just enjoy playing golf. I feel like I have missed a couple of years of my career for certain reasons and I'd like to see if I can play a little bit on a consistent basis and you have to be consistent, there is no question, you have to play consistent tournaments, week-in and week-out, to get your competitive feel back again. I know the first week I played in Australia in the Heineken my putting feel wasn't there. The second week it was a little better. So I wished I had actually played another tournament the week after because my ball-striking and my competitive play was starting to come back and starting to naturally flow. Instead of trying to think about what you are doing, it just evolves and happens on the golf course. So that is why I have pretty much ramped up my schedule at the start of the year a little bit more than what I have done before.
Q. In the last couple of years when you have been kind of on injured reserve, it seems like the scores are dropping by about a shot, two shots, sometimes on average, what do you make of the assault on the record books, is it good for the game? Do you have any ideas on what is causing it other than the obvious ones that are usually cited?
GREG NORMAN: I think it is a combination of probably a lot of things. The players are getting better. Probably when you have somebody out there who did it the year before, i.e., Tiger everybody else during that year, they are all saying: Oh, we can't beat him, we can't beat him. All of a sudden they are shooting the low scores to beat him. I think it is a combination of that. I think we have got to start looking at addressing toughening up the golf courses a little bit more. I don't see a problem with shooting 24 under and 22 under but when you come to major Championships it is a little different story. All of a sudden you are only seeing even pars, plus figures, 6 or 7-under, all of a sudden it is a different mindset for you so you have to get an adjustment to that. So I think there are certain situations where TPC for example, we should make that as tough as we could without making it ridiculously unfair. So there are certain places where we could do it. I don't want to see each week a pure putting competition. Equipment, you know, balls nowadays, I just tested another golf ball yesterday, and it goes further than the golf ball we got now. So all of a sudden you have got par 5s that are definitely reachable for everybody. So equipment, agronomy. I did watch a little bit of the Hope just out of pure interest to see somebody shooting that low under par. Seemed like there was no rough. So you could pretty much hit it anywhere. And the guys are so good they can shape it around trees and spin the ball exceptionally well. So there is really not a whole lot of trouble out there for them. It's really a combination of everything, I think just the sheer fact that the players are getting better within themselves; more comfortable of being able to go out there and shoot a 24-under or 25-under. And take the Blue Monster if we have -- I mean we talk it about it every year 20-under par which is, around here, that was never heard of 15, 20 years ago, now if it stays like this, this week, it is a flatout putting competition again.
Q. You were one of the first conditioning guys. Anybody out there now who doesn't do it?
GREG NORMAN: That is a given. It is almost -- a nutritionist and a sports therapist and trainer, a sports psychologist, and your coach. You have almost got five guys, you have got automatically if you want to be successful out here you have got to get them on the payroll somewhere very early in your career. All these young 19 year old kids, they are all -- they have all of somebody in that capacity or caliber. I heard Aaron Baddeley when he won the tournament in Australia he rattled off his list of people, I went: Whoa, there you go. So, a 19 year old, you have got your conditioning coach and sports therapist and psychologist, all that stuff. So you are finding that it has become a full-fledged business. There is no two ways. This is 100% business in everybody's mind and to find the best edge you are going to try to find whichever way you can get it.
Q. With the technology now do you think the time has come to have two sets of rules for pros and amateurs or maybe have restrictions on the balls for what the pros use and maybe some of the equipment?
GREG NORMAN: You know, that is an argument that has been going on and on for many years. I think we see that right now with the R&A and USGA with the ERC2 driver. I am a believer in having one set of rules, whatever company that is or whatever group, whether it is an amalgamation of the R&A and USGA I think that is one of the weaknesses we have in our game on a global basis from professional to amateur; that is some of the reasons why it is not in the Olympics because we don't have one governing body. This whole thing with the ERC drivers is a point in case of that. I'd like to see one set of rules for everybody, whether it is amateurs or professionals. I played with somebody else, they are using an ERC2 driver here in the States, I said well, what are you going to do -- recreational golfer playing today, but that is not right as far as I am concerned because we have a set of rules to abide by. These are our rules whether they are governed by the PGA TOUR or USGA, I'd like to see one governing body govern the game of golf on a global basis.
Q. Are you bothered more by, like an amateur Pro-Am partner who is playing next to you or the fact that some other pro out there who is in the same, you know, world ranking system trying to get the same point to get into some of these elite events is going to be using it overseas?
GREG NORMAN: No question. I agree. That shouldn't take place. We are all professional golfers. We all should abide by one set of rules. I think that is what I was trying to get to. I don't like the fact that you can play -- Australia everybody is using the ERC2 driver because they are a member of the European Tour or whatever suits the rules there or whatever governs them. That is why I say, I would rather see everybody play under the same rules and conditions. We touched on the fact of the golf ball out here on our Tour, everybody play a standard golf ball. Pretty hard to do with when players have endorsements with their manufacturers, so that is going to be a very, very difficult one. I think every other ball sport, everybody plays the same ball whether you are throwing -- a quarterback throwing a ball or basketball player or a tennis player. Golf, we have our own choices. I remember playing when we could change golf balls during the round. From a Pinnacle golf ball into the wind to using another ball downwind, we were allowed to do that in Europe. Those are the type of things I'd like to see definitely tighten up and standardized but I don't think you could ever do that with the ball industry because of all of the endorsements that take place right now.
Q. When you talk about the drivers whose rules do you like better?
GREG NORMAN: I think the USGA better, I do. As much as we all don't like the uniformity, you know, you have got -- there is a drop-dead deadline or rule that has to stand hard and fast, the initial velocity test or whatever it is. I don't know, I can't remember the exact terminology of it. But you have to abide by, you have to stay within those parameters. And I don't like to see that. I think you know, on the other side, I can see why a lot of the people want to use it, the 27 handicapper who goes out there like this guy I played with yesterday. It was like night and day, I had never seen him hit the ball that far. He is hitting it further than I have ever seen him. He is a 15, 18 handicap, he is loving life on the golf course.
Q. Scoring better?
GREG NORMAN: I still beat him (laughs).
Q. The R&A says that -- essentially saying that they don't feel that the extra length is a threat to the game; that is why --?
GREG NORMAN: Why do they readjust St. Andrews for the British Open? They lengthened that golf course. It has been a test of time for centuries, why don't they -- if they say that, that it doesn't affect it, then leave the golf courses the way they are. Look what they have done at Riviera, I mean, extra tees. So they say one thing and they are doing another. Let's get the balance right here and make sure that -- hate seeing golf courses lengthened because of that. The players are hitting it further, so be it, let them shoot 24-under.
Q. When you say the key to maybe helping reduce scoring is too toughen the golf courses, what do you do?
GREG NORMAN: I know what I do. Designing golf courses now, our philosophy to build golf courses, is totally different now than what it was ten years ago. And by that I mean by dog-legs, turning points are normally around about 800 feet. That is 267 yards roughly, something like that. Our carries over the bunkers used to be about 280 to 285. Now we are pushing them to 300 to 310. That is mind-boggling stuff when you think about it. So design philosophy changes that. Par 5s for example, when we designed golf courses I am a big believer in having two very reachable par 5s and having two par 5s unreachable for everybody. That is the design structure and how you play the golf hole out because it's got to be fair for everybody, let everybody have a chance, whether you are hitting a 5-iron or 3-wood, at least you have got a chance of getting it on. Balance it out that way. The dog legs, like I said, the carries are huge on bunkers now. Guys see, like out here, these bunkers don't exist. This is one of great golf courses of the world and holes like No. 5, you blow it way over the corner. You have got a 40-yard pitch into the green. So that is how I approach the change anyway.
Q. Can you talk about 18? It used to be one of the most demanding closing holes in golf. Last year it ranked way down on the list. Is it still a tough test of golf? Can you talk about that hole?
GREG NORMAN: It is a tough test of golf with old technology. Again we are getting to a point where to carry the water there ,if my memory is right it is like 250, 255, something in that area, they had to lengthen the tee because everybody was carrying the water. Even so now it is into the wind, it is not really a big factor for 95% of the players. So if you get up there, that fairway is close to 60 yards wide maybe 50 yards wide once you get over the water, there is a point in case, I mean, the longer you hit it, the easier the hole becomes because now instead of going in that green into the wind with a 4-iron and trying to drive it into the neck, you are going into that green with a 6-iron, 7-iron, 8-iron. What did Jim Furyk hit in there? 7-iron. And he is not a long hitter but there is an example of what happens to a great golf holes over a period of time.
Q. Going into the Masters this year obviously one of the stories is going to be whether Tiger wins; is it a slam or not a slam; where do you kind of fall on that issue?
GREG NORMAN: I would call it a slam, four in a row, absolutely. Even though it is not in the same year I would say that would to be a slam to me.
Q. Did you ever think you'd see that? We are talking about how many good players are there in the world....
GREG NORMAN: I believed this in the '80s. I truly believe that the slam is possible. Guys win 4 tournaments a year; why couldn't it be the four majors. And I think it is just a sheer fact that a lot of guys would probably be hesitant in their mind that, hey, you can't win the slam. Yeah, so it becomes a mental thing. Now you are getting all this influx from all these outside people saying, yes, you can, yes you can, why can't you, just go ahead and play, it is another golf tournament. I was a strong strong believer in that in the late '80s, early '90s, somebody will do it before I am dead and buried.
Q. Is that where he is that much better (pointing to his head) is just right here?
GREG NORMAN: It's the belief, yeah, Tiger is a prime example of somebody who has been groomed to be where he is at such a young age. You take a Jack Nicklaus, he was a great player, but he was just great naturally. Tiger is great naturally with all the other stuff thrown in because he had the ability at an early age to get that positive thought back; it's been driven into his head all the time, all the time. You take a kid five to eight years old, you are telling him those things: You are going to be great, you are going to be great, you are going to do this, going to do this, you are going to win, going to win; all of a sudden you expect to win. That is what happened. When you don't win it can be just as hard too because your expectation factor within yourself is a certain level. So as each tournament goes by, I think it becomes a little harder for Tiger because it just keeps eating him: Why I haven't won this eight times. This has been the longest I have ever been; what is going on. I think from a younger mindset -- I know we do that in our junior foundations right now, we work just as much on the head as much on the physical aspect of the game. I think that is why you will see over the next 10, 15 years you will see a lot of Tiger Woods. You won't just see one Tiger Woods around for a couple of years, you are going to see a lot of them. There is going to be a lot more great players playing because they are learning how to put it all together at a younger age. Like I said, these 19 year olds the Adam Scotts of the world Aaron Baddeleys of the world, Sergio Garcias of the world, these guys are just ripe-ready to win every time they tee it up. Some people give them a little bit of harassment because they are so confident in their approach. I mean I thought in Australia with some of the articles written down there about Aaron which is sad because he truly believes that. If he believes it, let him go.
Q. And he won?
GREG NORMAN: And he won, that is exactly right. Yeah.
Q. There was a time, turn of the century 290 and 300 will win majors. Why should it be that big a deal if 268 is winning a U.S. Open?
GREG NORMAN: Oh, I don't think it is a big deal. I think it is great for people. From a spectator standpoint the more birdies and eagles that are made the more excitement there is. I have always been a believer I think people love to watch birdies more than bogeys. But it is a marriage of both. I mean, because a major championship seems like the intensity should be a little bit greater so therefore bogeys become more of a factor because you see more of them. So I prefer to play where you are seeing a lot. 67 birdies a round is norm now on the Tour instead of 3 to 4 back to 30 years ago.
Q. Baseball embraces a sudden influx of home runs and records falling there; whereas golf from making courses tougher to the debate about equipment, seems to be nervous about records falling. Why is that?
GREG NORMAN: I don't see that they are nervous about it. The only thing I see people nervous about is all this drug testing and stuff. I don't see the nervousness coming in from the records being broken. I think it is great for all of us. I think -- I hope I am one of those guys breaking the record I remember one at TPC, there was no greater feeling, I wanted to just shatter the record. It is just like Bannister (ph) running the four-minute mile you just don't want to break it, you just want to tear it down so nobody else can beat it. When I see that record-breaking performances at the Olympics, it seems like a record set one year and you think nobody is ever going to beat this and next year, 2/10 or 3/10 of a second peeled off, I mean, that is where everybody keeps pushing. That is the same in golf, let him have it because I think it is beneficial for all of us.
Q. You brought up the beta blockers again. I know you created a little bit of a wave, I guess coming in and talking about that subject. Are you sure it is -- is it that pervasive or just starting or why do you -- you seem to be the guy who has taken it upon himself to --?
GREG NORMAN: I was a guy a couple of years ago to suggest because there were these sentiments underneath that really hadn't surfaced that there were suspicions of this taking place, I actually went to the R&A before the British Open and said: Hey, I do believe -- I might have been the defending champion at the time, I said, you know let's prove all this stuff wrong and I will put my hand up and do a urine test for you and just the easiest which to shut the whole thing down is to prove that the whole thing is not true. That to me still should be the case today. Take the top 50 in the world and say, okay, for the next six months for the rest of this year we are going to do random testing. You are going to win -- you are going to have to give a test but you are going to have to do it, then you can prove at the end of the season, hey, the guys were clean, we told you that. And I don't understand it. To me, as a player, and a lover of the game, the easiest and quickest way to shut it down is to shut it down this way. You find that we are clean.
Q. What substances are you talking about other than the beta blockers which I guess are legal; correct?
GREG NORMAN: I learned a lot at the Olympics this year. You know, I think spending two weeks down there - well not a complete two weeks but two weeks down there with trainers and nutritionists for swimming teams and athletics, you know, it just blows my mind how far advanced they are. Now, there is no reason why you can't tap into that same information with the e-mail nowadays to get what is the best advantage nutritional-wise for golf. Look at Mark Magwire, you know, he was on that whatever that long word is, Andro, and everybody speculated. So it will be interesting to see this year because I believe he is off it as to what his performance level is going to be. I bet he still whacks 60 odd home runs. So that they are examples. I am sure with the technology we have with computers, and emails and videos, swings, sports psychologists, that's obviously been thought of, how do you fine tune your body your best way. Nutritionists right there at the top of the list. You have got to keep that performance going for a full season let alone 4 straight days where you wake up early, go to bed late, wake up early or whatever the fluctuation is not each -- all those factor are being looked into. That is why going back to records being broken that has got to have something to do with it as well not the drug issue, I am talking about nutrition. So going back I just think that talking with some of the other players by telephone, the quickest way to stop it is to prove that it is not there and the only way you can prove it is not there say, hey, Mr. Commissioner, just do it and then everybody is going to be proven wrong.
Q. What would you be looking for in and who is running the testing? You have got different drug laws in different countries?
GREG NORMAN: I think the most of it -- the interest of it is pretty much more here in the United States than -- I know Craig Parry, it wasn't me, in Australia it was Craig Parry, by the way, in the last couple of weeks who really stepped up to the plate, kind of like got it going a little bit more down there. But he plays here in the U.S. tour as well. So I think if the interest was shown here in the U.S. controlled by the U.S. tour, controlled by certain guidelines, it won't be a hard thing to do. What are you looking for? I don't know. I am not a chemist so I don't know what goes into all of that.
Q. Do you think steroids could be performance enhancing in golf with additional strength driving distance?
GREG NORMAN: I don't know. I know that I have been on EAS stuff which is a nutritional product, all that stuff that we do to try to balance out our systems especially when I was going through that rehab, I had atrophy. I found it made me feel terrible so I went off it. When I was practicing I was 3-putting six times a round because I was getting the shakes. So to me the stuff I was using was great to build my body back up but from an aspect of enhancement performing stuff I would say, no. But I have never taken steroids or anything like that. So I couldn't answer that question. Never even taken beta blockers so I couldn't even answer that question either.
Q. You talked a little bit about what you -- what has been done on par 4s and par 5s nowadays and everything. What about par 3s anything that you are doing with the -- do you -- are you designing anything differently? What do you think should be done with the par three holes in light of balls and equipment?
GREG NORMAN: I'd like to see a balance of par 3s vary. I'd like to see a player with an 8-iron in his hand, I think a good golf course for example of that is Sugarloaf. They have got a par 4 that is 258 yards from the back of the tee to the back of the green, middle back of the green. And then we got the second hole which is 143 yards or 45 yards so I have given them a complete variation of it which is pretty much the same for everybody. Most guys are going to hit a pitching wedge 9-iron 8-iron 142 yards so, it really is not much of a difference, an advantage between pitching wedge and 8-iron. The big advantage when you get to 250 someone's got to either hit 2-iron or 3-wood. Now hitting a 2-iron or 1-iron is just as difficult as hitting 3-wood probably maybe little bit more because you are constructing your golf clubs a little bit different so you miss-hit shots, a little bit more rewarding in certain clubs, so yeah, I definitely take that philosophy. I'd like to keep short long and couple medium like 210 and 180 so vary it up a lot in that regard.
Q. Favorite par 3?
GREG NORMAN: On this Tour? I have got to go to Hilton Head, I'd have to say 17 at Hilton Head would be one of my favorites and, yeah, nothing else comes to mind, 17 at Hilton Head there is a shot that is 180 yards but the way the green is located and the wind conditions, that hole plays -- one of the toughest par 3s you want to play. So that is where distance in that regard doesn't make that big of an advantage.
Q. Speaking of Hilton Head I hear you are building a new boat, bigger one?
GREG NORMAN: That is right.
Q. Bigger? Better? Larger? Faster?
GREG NORMAN: What is bigger and what is better... Definitely not faster, but it's got a little bit longer boat, yeah.
Q. At what point did you start getting interested in that type of thing, fishing and ---?
GREG NORMAN: In boats?
Q. This is a yacht, a ship, probably, I guess...
GREG NORMAN: Since I was this high I used to sail and race sailboats, been a lover of the ocean and ever since I can remember I have always owned a boat. And as time goes by you get to appreciate it. I like the fact that it gets you away from everything and everyone. I like the isolation factor. When you go to build something of this magnitude you have to take all those things into consideration where you like it to go and how you like to travel. So you factor all those things in, when you go to build it. I don't think there has ever been a time in my life where I haven't had a boat from the age of ten years old up to where I am now.
Q. How big is a little bigger?
GREG NORMAN: Well, this one is about --I think it is about 230 feet, something like that.
Q. What was the old one?
GREG NORMAN: 150 feet.
Q. What happened to the old one?
GREG NORMAN: A guy from California bought it. He is actually sailing around somewhere in the rain and cold in California, so he keeps it down in Mexico and it is a small world, everybody knows everybody's boat out there, kind of like in the airplane world, you fly somewhere in Europe you see -- you pretty much know who it is and what they are doing there, it's a fairly small world out there.
Q. Got a name for it and have you taken delivery?
GREG NORMAN: Haven't taken delivery and the name is Aussie Rules.
Q. Wasn't that the old one?
GREG NORMAN: Yeah, you keep the name. Yeah.
Q. Have you ever had two aces in the same round?
GREG NORMAN: Oh, no.
Q. (Inaudible) there was this 82 year old woman and then this 36 year old guy the other day had two holes in one --?
GREG NORMAN: Didn't Arnold do that if my memory is right opposite days, right next day.
Q. This is the same round - two people in two weeks supposed to be 67 million to one?
GREG NORMAN: Did they go out and buy a lottery ticket?
Q. I don't know.
GREG NORMAN: I would. Never even come close to that. I would say 67 million to one is a rare occurrence.
Q. With your health the way it is now do you feel you are more dialed in now at taking a chance at some of the majors this year than in the past?
GREG NORMAN: No question. I do feel that way more because of the enthusiasm out of what I am getting from my work in the last couple of months. I am enthusiastic to play and I am enthusiastic to practice because I am seeing a lot of good rewards even when I just play a social round of golf like yesterday, I can feel my concentration is different. I feel that I am applying myself a lot better on the golf course. I am not as edgy or as aggressive within myself because there were things taking place in my body and swing for a couple of years that I really didn't know. I am the type of guy that needs to know what is happening. So I feel more at peace with myself and I definitely feel that way off the golf course, so the only lingering support that I really needed within myself was feeling good on the golf course again. I am starting to feel that way. I hope it all plays out. I do believe I can compete for the next X number of years, whatever number of years that is. It is like -- it is only four years until I am 50 so that is going to be an interesting decision for myself as well but for the next couple of years I definitely know that I can feel like I can get up there and play because of the way I feel within. Like I said, at the start of this I haven't felt this way in probably three to four years.
Q. I would think though Greg for guys in their 40s who have had excellent careers, yourself, maybe O'Meara and at a younger age maybe a Fred Couples, that the hardest thing you face is not so much the physical, but the fact you have been doing this for so long?
GREG NORMAN: That is very true. To get back and to be the competitor is the hardest part. Because you remember how well you played at certain times when you were at your peak and you sometimes push yourself to get back there too quickly because you know what you can do. So that can be a negative factor on how you get there. You have got to kind of like just let it evolve as much as you hate that happening, you have just got to let it evolve. The other aspect, the hard part for me is the sheer fact that my daughter is going off to college and life changes all of a sudden. For a period of ten years from when your kids are 8 to 18, our prime of our golfing career, and we don't spend a whole lot of time with them because we are travelling 30 weeks, 40 weeks a year because of golf. When you get away from it and you spend time with your family and kids you go whoa, I really don't want to go back to it. Now you get this split and in your emotions and feelings because of your family - as much as your family supports you they'd rather have you be home because they enjoy you being home. I experienced that because of my surgeries for a couple of years. I experienced being home a lot and I really enjoyed being home a lot. So you have that emotion factor too. If you look at O'Meara and those guys who feel that way, their kids are getting to that age where they are growing -- Nick Price is another one we talk about it, when your kids enjoy starting to do things that you enjoy doing and they go with you whether it is fishing, diving, skiing, or whatever it is, you want to spend more time with them so it gets harder and harder to get away from them.
Q. You have been a professional for a quarter of century. Doesn't it get grinding to think about -- you talk about 5 weeks in a row, I mean, I would get tired just thinking about it, going to a tournament picking up your car?
GREG NORMAN: Only tiring part is that. Once you get out on the golf courses that is what you love to do. Hotels, you get to hate them because they are all the same. I don't care whether you are staying in the best in the world or renting a house, they are all the same. So that to me is the grind getting on an airplane and flying to Australia; doesn't excite me as much as it used to three or four years ago.
Q. Doesn't excite anybody.
GREG NORMAN: Once you get there it is great. Having the journey is another deal. But so there are lot of interesting factors but for me you have got -- I have talked it over with the family. They have accepted the fact that they see that I am excited again and they like to see me get out there and play, and they know this is pretty much the decision factor, how what happens over the next couple of years will determine my mindset for the last couple of years before I am 50. So if all goes well, you never know. If all goes bad, you do know. So.....
Q. Most guys out here at 46 are already thinking about the SENIOR TOUR. Do you think about the SENIOR TOUR at all?
GREG NORMAN: I do not. I really have no interest in playing a full SENIOR TOUR schedule, I have always said that I would love to play certain events, if I had the opportunity of playing in them. As long as my competitive spirit and juices are still flowing at that age, and time gives me the availability to practice, yeah, absolutely I will go out and play a few event, but you won't see me playing 18 events or 12 events or anything of that magnitude. I have got -- for me I have got too many other things that I truly enjoy doing outside of golf and at at 50 you still got plenty of time to experience a lot of nice things in life as well.
Q. As a younger man you have got to experience what a 46 year old can do at Augusta.
GREG NORMAN: I did actually, yeah.
Q. Will you think about that and what were you thinking as a 32 year old when you saw what Nicklaus --?
GREG NORMAN: I can remember what I said when Jack won and when Raymond won, I think Raymond won the U.S. Open at Shinnecock around that time too. They weren't -- both of them weren't spring chickens, they had a bit of length in their teeth. I remember saying to everybody especially the younger guys, they said, you know, we should all take stock of this. I said here we are in our early 30s and here these guys are 15 years ahead of us who are still winning major championships. That has got to be a huge plus to all of us. And I do remember saying that to people. Because I think that is a great incentive even for a kid who is thirteen years old now to think that at 30 odd years he could still have a chance of winning a professional championship if he wanted to play professional golf. Goes to show that longevity can be something positive or negative in your mind. If you feel in your mid-40s you can't compete then don't. You still hear Jack and Arnold -- they play because they compete to win. As long as they feel that way let them stay out there. As long as I feel that I can compete I will stay out here.
Q. Will you take as much stock in what Nicklaus did 14 years, 15 years ago as what you did two years ago at Augusta?
GREG NORMAN: Absolutely. Yeah, I mean, no question you think about it because relation to the comment I made when I was in my early 30s about when Jack won, sure, you think about them. I think they are positive things to have in your head. Come a week before Augusta you think, well, Jack won this one when he was 46. How old are you. 46, hey, pull your finger out; let's go win. Those type of things, you have a conversation with yourself getting yourself ready to go from a mental side. So yeah, I will be reminding myself of that as we go get closer.
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