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May 17, 2007

Peter Hanson


GORDON SIMPSON: Well played today, first player under 70, first with no bogeys. Keeping a bogey off your card was always going to put you right up the leaderboard today.
PETER HANSON: Yeah, the golf course is playing so tough, staying away from double is really what you're looking to do. Of course, you're going to make those. Today I managed to save a few really good ones. I missed three greens I believe and managed to make three good saves and a couple of birdies on the par 5s, birdieing 18.
GORDON SIMPSON: Where does this course rank on the degree of difficulty in the 2007 season?
PETER HANSON: This is almost like a major setup. It's like playing a U.S. Open or a US PGA. That's how it feels and I think that's where mental approach, you have to have to get around this course, as well. If you don't strike it well, you're going to have -- you have no chance.
GORDON SIMPSON: What was the particular part of your game that was spot-on today?
PETER HANSON: I have to say most of it has really gone well. I drove the ball well. I hit irons pretty decent and made a couple of really good putts. It felt like a really solid round of golf and I think to shoot 3-, 4-, 5-under around here, you need to really, really play well. It's probably more like shooting 7-, 8-under on a regular golf course.

Q. Inaudible
PETER HANSON: I have to say, the rough is very fair because you're going to get bad lies to matter where. It's not like you can get a decent lie anywhere, because if you miss the fairway, you know you're going to hack it out.

Q. When you see people in deep rough, does it have an effect on you as well?
PETER HANSON: No, I agree. I played with Garry Houston and John Bickerton, and Garry hit a couple of not really bad shots but still got penalised with bogeys and triple-bogeys and everything. So we're going to see a lot of high numbers on the boards.
Like I said, if you don't drive the ball well, it's really, really hard.

Q. Inaudible
PETER HANSON: No, you have to miss it right. When you go out and walk the golf course, like yesterday we played a practise round, it's hard because you kind of see the rough but you don't want to see it. You have to really focus on where to hit the ball and pick the lines and where you want the ball to finish.
Like I said, if you hit it well, you're going to hit a lot of fairways. And if you don't hit it well, it's so, so difficult. It's more -- it gets really, really mental just like I said. You have to focus hard on what to do and where to place the ball and then try to do it. And if not, accept it and it might be bogey or whatever.

Q. Where did it make the most difference, moving the tees up?
PETER HANSON: Definitely the long par-3 11th. It's probably the biggest -- you put the pin on the back, you really need to play it off the forward tee because the landing area is so small and it's a tough hole even coming in with a 5- or 6-iron today. Some of the par 4s where they moved, it makes a difference if you have to move it up to the back of the tee or the front of the tee, 15, 20 yards and it makes a big difference.

Q. What did you play from there?
PETER HANSON: I hit a 6-iron very small in.

Q. Would you like to play it from the back?
PETER HANSON: Yeah, from the back tee that would probably be like a 2-iron today. So moving it up -- I don't know, it could be like 35, 40 yards. That means you can control the ball so much better through the backspin and at least have a chance.
I think if you play it from the back tee, you're really trying to hit the greens. You don't worry where the pin is if it's on the back or the front. You just try to hit the centre of the green.
GORDON SIMPSON: Have you had much success in this tournament in previous years?
PETER HANSON: Not really. I played two years ago at Carton House. I was ill last year.. No, I haven't really done that great what I remember. It would be nice to break that.

Q. Does it put you off playing in an event, knowing the weather was bad the previous year?
PETER HANSON: It might be to some people but we love to play the game and coming here, it's all about the mind-set, again. If you come here, you're probably better off -- if we're playing in really bad weather, it might be that a few of the guys think like that. You're maybe to the grinding enough and it could help you, if you have the right mental aspect it could help you.

Q. Would you like to see the tees moved back --
PETER HANSON: I think if you move the pin to the front part of the green, I think they are going to move the tee back. It's just a tough hole. There's a lot of tough golf holes out there.

Q. Do you stand up and think about the home at stake for a hole in one?
PETER HANSON: No, I don't think about it. If you're lucky enough to knock it in there, you will get very happy. But when you're standing over the ball, you don't think about it. I think then it's probably going to be -- if you win this week, you have a million Euro bonus for next week, that could probably get you thinking ahead a little bit. I think the golf course, the way it's setup, it fits my game really, really well because the strength in my game has always been the long game and what I've been trying to work on the last winter, especially the putting, but the short game.
So I know when I get here, I see a golf course like this, I know I have a better chance of doing well than if it had been really wide open or a short golf course. Different golf course suits different players.

Q. Do you deal with the mental side or do you have a coach?
PETER HANSON: I'm working with a Swedish guy named Torsten Hansson. He's working with Henrik Stenson and a couple of other guys and he's former military. He's an ex-diver, Navy SEAL himself, so he's got a different background, very interesting. He's a very interesting person and what we are working mainly on right now is a lot about concentration and focus and that's where maybe I've been struggling a little bit over last couple of years.

Q. What does he says differently to Jos Vanstiphout, for example?
PETER HANSON: I don't think -- they probably get paid to say the same things because there's not like one thing that's so different from another. So it's all about working and long term, it's really boring but I think it's boring as well -- yes, it's all about, how do you say that in English when you kind of speak about it all over so you get reminded of it, repetition. Because if you don't work for two or three months, you often fall into bad behavior and doing things the wrong way. We're doing a lot of exercises on the driving range and when we're out on the course really, really trying to focus extremely hard on targets to really get -- if you stare at the thing for very long time like 15, 20 foot, you can kind of move the thing, visualize it. You've kind of stuck them to the front of your eye. Can't really explain it very well in English.
GORDON SIMPSON: Obviously a strong mental discipline to have done the job he did.
PETER HANSON: Yeah, he's got a very interesting background and now he's using that, he's doing a lot of work with big companies back in Sweden.
GORDON SIMPSON: Can we get your birdies and bogeys?
PETER HANSON: 15 was a pitching wedge in to about 15 feet. And 18 was exactly the same pitching wedge to 15 feet. And then I made birdie on 7, which was a lob-wedge into about 10 feet and 8 was a 5-iron in to 15 feet, as well.
I used a driver. I hit a pretty good drive and I had about 220 yards to the front and I was just in-between clubs so it was -- the wind was a little bit into off the left and it was gusting between 2-iron and 3-wood and I didn't feel like going for it. So I just laid up with a 9-iron and hit a pitching wedge.
I think it's so tight up there, if you hit a good tee shot, you end up with a perfect number, and you know you have a full shot then you might consider going for it. When I stood there as well and Alastair Forsyth just pulled his into the trees and like you said before, when you see something like that, you know, 1-under par, a really tough golf course, it's all about leaving the bogeys and double-bogeys off the card the first round.
So I felt like I had a good chance from making birdie from the middle the fairway with a pitching wedge or a gap wedge and managed to make a 4. Sometimes do you and sometimes you don't.

Q. Nine was playing tough?
PETER HANSON: 9 is a tough tee shot, you have the wind a little bit off the left and I hit a good drive and a 3-iron and pitching wedge in. It's not playing extremely long, but if you miss the fairway off the tee you're probably going to leave yourself with a 7-iron or 6-iron on your third shot.
GORDON SIMPSON: Peter, very well played again. Good luck tomorrow.

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