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August 9, 2007

Woody Austin


KELLY ELBIN: Woody Austin, ladies and gentlemen, in with a round of 2-under par 68 in the opening round of the 89th PGA Championship here at Southern Hills.
Woody, congratulations, nice start. It looked like it was a good start to the round and with the exception of 17, pretty consistent throughout.
WOODY AUSTIN: Yeah, it was pretty solid. A couple bad swings on 16, 17, kind of derailed me a little bit. But all in all it was pretty solid, just left a few, missed a few in the last few holes.
KELLY ELBIN: You mentioned the greens are firming up a bit.
WOODY AUSTIN: The greens are definitely starting to firm up. They are starting to get purple in spots and starting to get chewed up so the ball was getting away from you on the greens much the first nine holes you could hit your putts and the last nine holes you had to be real careful because the ball was starting to run away.
KELLY ELBIN: Birdies and bogeys?
WOODY AUSTIN: Starting on 1, I hit a really good 3-wood off the tee on the left side and I hit a pitching wedge to about three feet and made birdie.
The rest, I got a good break on No. 3. Hit it in the green-side bunker and hit a bunker shot that hit the flag that kept it close to the hole.
Disappointing finish and then I had a real easy birdie chance on 5, 8 and 9 that I missed. And then started out the day on No. 10, hit it right below the hole where you had to on No. 10 about ten feet and made it.
13, the par 5, I hit a perfect drive in the fairway and hit 3-iron just over the flag, just barely over the green and chipped it to about three feet and made that.
And then 17, I hit it to the right in the rough. I had -- would have been able to go at it if the trees were not there, but the trees were right there so I had to chip it back out in the fairway and hit it to ten feet and just didn't make it.
KELLY ELBIN: And you started on the back nine; correct?

Q. Is there too much being made of the weather, the heat; or as Tiger alluded to a few days ago, his only change is is that he's changing his glove a few more times. Where do you come in with this? Every report we get is it's so hot, it's too hot.
WOODY AUSTIN: Well, it just depends on your perspective of it. You know, it is hot, yeah. But is it so bad that you can't play? No.
I think most of us would say, especially most golfers would say, you would much rather play in the heat when your body stays loose, as opposed to, I can't play in the cold and I still live just down the road and it gets cold and I can't play in it because your body just can't loosen up no matter how many clothes you put on, that just makes it even harder to swing, where at least if it's hot, you can swing.

Q. So what are the major changes that you make, if any, other than changing your glove, say?
WOODY AUSTIN: Well, the biggest thing for me is I drink a heck of a lot more than I normally do. I don't drink that much water or Gatorade or -- I drink Hydrade now, being a Florida boy, I'm used to the heat but obviously this is pretty an amazing.
So on a normal day I might drink two bottles of water per nine holes; and today, every other hole.

Q. Does this week, this golf course set up well for you as far as playing to your strengths? You've always talked about you would prefer to play for par as a great reward?
WOODY AUSTIN: Like I said, I always think that when even par means something, it's a good golf course for me.
Whether or not this one sets up real good for me, I don't know. There's some tough drives out there for me because I just don't work the ball right-to-left so easily anymore, and there's a lot of right-to-left holes out here.
But, you know, like I said, any time even par means something -- when you have to drive it, keep it in play and make pars, I'm going to be around, if I'm playing well, just like anybody. But I'm -- what I like about it is if you go out and play nine holes and you play a solid nine holes of golf and you shoot even par, you're not out of the tournament. If you go to another golf -- if you go to certain golf tournaments, and you play a perfect nine holes of golf and you go out at 115 in the afternoon and you're even par and you look on the board and all you see is 9-8-8-7, you're demoralized and you're going to press, press, press and you're going to shoot horrible.
Whereas if you come out here today, there were a lot of red numbers early, but you know that nobody was more than three or whatever, and you know that it always seems to creep back as the round gets going. So you know that as long as you hang in there and you play a solid round of golf, you keep it around even par, you're going to be all right. And that's great. I love that. Some of us older players miss that.

Q. Obviously you come in and you're trying to win a tournament, trying to win a major; being 18th on the Presidents Cup list, does that even enter the equation in your mind this week that if you have a really good week?
WOODY AUSTIN: Not really. The Presidents Cup for me would be awesome but I know I'm never going to be a pick, so I'm too busy trying to play really good at the PGA Championship.

Q. Graeme Storm comes out, shoots a 5-under today. Do you see the scores continuing to go like his did or do you see them coming back towards par as the weekend progresses?
WOODY AUSTIN: Well, this afternoon, the greens started to show signs, and let's face it, when you get a major championship on Saturday and Sunday and you get these greens going crazy, they are going to get chewed up. They are going to start to get spiked up and bumpy, and the faster they get, it's just going to be harder and harder to shoot those good scores. So that's why it's important to get off to good starts.
So, the golf course is going to start to win as the week goes on.

Q. While there's a lot still to go this week, can you just look at the whole season and give me your appraisal of it? Are you satisfied with what you've got done with year?
WOODY AUSTIN: Well, satisfied with one week. I mean, if you look at the year, it really has not been that good of a year. It was a terrible start. I didn't play that good until I did win and I played good two weeks after that.
But I like to base my year or I like to base my abilities on consistency, and there has been no consistency other than that one little stretch. I want to be consistent from the start to the finish. Sure, we're all going to have little peaks and valleys, but I want my peaks and valleys to start squeezing themselves together.
For someone like myself if you've only won a couple of times, if you win, it's a great year. But if you want the truth about how I feel about it, it's not been a consistent year and I have not had a consistent year.
KELLY ELBIN: Woody has a win this year at the Stanford St. Jude Championship and also tied for second at Warwick Hills earlier this year. Woody Austin, thank you very much.

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