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June 6, 2003

Tom Gillis


TODD BUDNICK: I want to thank Tom Gillis for joining us, after back-to-back rounds of 3-under 68, 6-under has you in the clubhouse with the tie for the lead. Tom, you kind of struggled this year, made 2 of 7 cuts coming in. But this is a tournament where a lot of first time wins have come about. Talk a little about your success the first few days.

TOM GILLIS: Well, I hit the ball in the fairway, the usual, what everybody said, and -- I don't know, I missed a few greens, but hit the ball solid. And I played good Monday in the U.S. Open qualifier in Chicago, and made it through there. I don't know, maybe the time off at home, had a few weeks off with Colonial and Muirfield and that, made me think about what I want to do and my game plan the rest of the year. And from here on out looking at the schedule I think coming out of Tour school I've seen that I'm probably going to get in quite a bit of events the rest of the summer. That was relaxing for me. I think the early part of the year there was pressure to get out and play well and get a good number in the pre-rank. So I think that relaxed me really. And you're going to get a lot of starts in there, you might as well just go out and go for it.

TODD BUDNICK: Talk about the course this week, obviously the weather has made it tough, but this is your first go around. For you, you don't know any different.

TOM GILLIS: No, I played nine holes in the Pro Am on Wednesday, I saw the back 9 and that was it. I didn't see the front, but it's a great golf course, I must say that. I do like the golf course, nice design, some really neat holes on the back 9. But it's a little soggy, but it's playing long. The greens are receptive to the shots, you can be aggressive coming into the greens.

TODD BUDNICK: You made the Open qualifying on Monday.


TODD BUDNICK: You won your game in the Pro Am on Wednesday?

TOM GILLIS: I don't know, we shot two or three under, I highly doubt we won. If we did -- I hope we did. Maybe I misread it.

Q. What do you think it is about this course that lends itself to guys who maybe haven't had a lot of success in the past playing so well here?

TOM GILLIS: You know what, I don't think it's the golf course, I think it's the time of year that it falls. I think that it comes after a big, long run of tournaments like Byron Nelson, and all these tournaments where a lot of the Tour school guys don't get in. I think once they get here, the summer is here, and they know they can play a lot. And I really don't think it's the golf course. I don't think so. I think it's timing.

Q. Are you thinking at this point, let's make a big check this week, is that the primary thing?

TOM GILLIS: I said to a friend the other day, I've played so average this year, that I'll probably get 12 to 14 more starts. And I look at it as getting 14 more chances to win to keep my card. So the way I do that is try to win every week. So I could care less if I have a big check, because when it's all said and done one day, people aren't going to remember me from making a big check in the Kemper, but only if I win. I'm like everybody else, trying to win.

TODD BUDNICK: Could we go through your round? Start with the birdie on 4.

TOM GILLIS: Birdie on 4, I'm trying to remember, I'm so exhausted. I don't know the golf course that well. I made about a 30-footer, there, hit an 8-iron in there, and made a good, long putt.

And the hole after that I hit a wedge in there about 3 feet and made that.

3-putted 7. Hit.

Hit it close on 8, missed.

Parred 9.

Next birdie came at I think -- well, 3-putted on 11, as well.

And then I made birdie on 13, the par-5. I hit an 8-iron in there about four feet, made that.

Next hole I hit a wedge in there about 3 feet and made that.

And then I made pars the rest of the way.

And on 18 I had a 6-iron in there, about 15 feet left of the hole and made it. It was a pretty solid round. Both days I haven't -- even today my playing partner is like I know you're disappointed with 3-under, because it could have been a lot lower, because I hit the ball pretty close all day. But what are you going to do?

Q. Is this the best position you've been at after two rounds, and are you looking (inaudible) --?

TOM GILLIS: This is the best position I've been in, obviously, I would say. Yeah, I hope I'm in the last group. I would love to be in the last group. It really doesn't matter much. I've still got to go play golf. I don't know, I feel pretty focused right now, where it doesn't matter who I'm playing, or the group I'm in. I've got a number in my head I know I have to get to to have a chance. So wherever I start tomorrow, first off or last off, I'm still trying to get to that spot.

End of FastScripts....

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