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


April 1, 2009

Lorena Ochoa


DANA GROSS-RHODE: Welcome to our defending champion press conference, and we welcome Lorena Ochoa. You've had a busy couple of days coming in to hopefully defend your title. How are you feeling about this week?
LORENA OCHOA: Yes, hello, everybody. It's been a good week so far. We played a couple of Pro-Ams, and I had good teams and I had a good time. I think today, especially playing the tournament course, really helped me to feel more comfortable with the speed of the games and to see how the course is playing.
I'm just happy to be here. We are all very excited about playing again, the course. Being the first major championship of the year, it's always special.
And in this case having the opportunity to defend the title I think is more special to me. So I'm going to try do my best and my goal is to give myself a good chance to win the tournament on Sunday, and I'm going to be 100 percent there tomorrow to start with a good way.

Q. I have a serious question concerning the recent violence in México, your homeland. First of all, do you feel safe going back there, and how does it affect you as a human being, and is it as bad as it's shown on TV?
LORENA OCHOA: Well, that's a good question. I think there's been a little bit of a misunderstanding. Especially in Guadalajara and in Mexico City, it's been safe there the last couple of years. A lot of things are happening in the north of the country, and it's a really bad situation. But I think the government is working as hard as they can. I think for the first time, they are pushing harder and bringing a lot of people to be involved in that situation.
I feel lucky, everybody time I go back home, people just, you know, Guadalajara, like I said, it's a safe place, so I feel okay. I live there, my whole family lives there. When I visit Mexico City, it's always a little bit tougher. It's a bigger city, a lot of traffic and a lot of things going on there, but I feel comfortable. I think that I haven't received anything but good support and I appreciate that very much.

Q. You've been coming to this tournament since you were in college. Does it feel any different coming black as the champion having won it, or were you tempted to jump in the lake when you walked by it today?
LORENA OCHOA: I don't think it feels different, but I feel comfortable. I got here on Monday and practiced early, played 18 holes and I was telling my caddie, "It just feels like we are practicing in our home."
We've been here so long, this is my tenth tournament and have so many great memories and have a great time year after year. It's not like when you play the U.S. Open where you have to really concentrate a lot and get to know the course, the greens, see how the clubhouse is, the practice facilities.
Here, I know where I'm going and I know where the putts break and I know how the rough is playing. It's just an easier week in that way. I love coming in here and I feel a lot of support. There are many Mexicans that are coming, too, and hopefully we'll all jump in the lake again.

Q. I know a lot of the grounds keepers here look forward to eating breakfast with you here, and you just mentioned there are a lot of Latinos in the Coachella Valley that look up to you. What kind of pride do you feel knowing that there's so many people looking up to you as a role model in this area?
LORENA OCHOA: Well, it gives me extra motivation to play good, not only for me, but for all of them. I'm very proud to be Mexican and represent them. There are so many good people, the families, and they represent the values and work really hard and we all appreciate very much.
I wasn't asked to make breakfast this year, so maybe it wasn't that good last year. (Laughter) It's already Wednesday, and I haven't heard anything. So maybe it doesn't happen this year and we are changing the plan. Maybe we just do that celebration on Sunday.

Q. You've talked many times about having to give yourself more time away from the golf course, but you've always been so cooperative. Has it been tough for you to say no?
LORENA OCHOA: Yes, I think I'm doing a good job so far this year. I've been having a little more time for me. I enjoy that.
I'm also getting better at saying no. Sometimes it's not easy, but I appreciate your support, your understanding, because I think it's important to me to have that time of rest, and also very important time to practice. I was missing that a little bit last year.
And I'm ready to do it. I want to have a good year, and I'm going to do my best inside and outside the golf course.

Q. What gives you more excitement, the opportunity to win a third major title this week, or thinking about your wedding later this year?
LORENA OCHOA: We'll go one at a time, but first, jump in the lake and win this, the third major, and then the wedding.
That's the way I live. I do live week-by-week. It's very different, my life, my private life. I am in a good state in my life, I'm very happy and I'm in love and I can't wait to get married. It's going to be a long way to December, but I've been lucky to find the right man, and like I say, I try to go and to live one week at a time. We are here, this is a major championship, and when the time comes, I'll be there.

Q. You came into last year's tournament playing so well, do you feel like you can get back to that level of dominance, and if so, what's it going to take to get back to that level?
LORENA OCHOA: I'm doing okay. I think that's why we all practice every day, and that's what keeps me motivated. I do want to win more tournaments and be out there. I think we all dream on just winning.
I think I had a great off-season after the year before. My game is very solid, and I'm working on my putting a lot. There are a few things I want to improve. I think things are getting together and I really can't wait to get to that moment, and start really putting better, and give myself more chances and to dominate. My goal is to be at the top as the No. 1 player and I'm going to do whatever it takes to stay there.

Q. The comparisons, at least last year here, to you and Tiger Woods on the men's tour; now, Tiger seems to be tougher than all of the other players on the men's tour. That's part of his skill. Is there a certain amount of toughness on the women's tour, also?
LORENA OCHOA: Your question is -- yes, we are tough. (Laughter) yes, you have to be tough out there.
I didn't understand very well your question. I think we are very competitive. We are aggressive players. We are tough. You know, when it comes to the last putt on the last hole, we all want to do it. We are all brave, that's what really makes a difference in a champion, and what I'm going to try to do.

Q. A couple of players have mentioned they seem to have the speed up on the greens earlier this week than they normally do, or than they have in the last few years; do they seem like they are a little faster or a little firmer out there this week?
LORENA OCHOA: I think it has a lot to with the LPGA and the agronomists. What they promised to us is that they will keep the same condition for the course starting on Monday, so we can get a better feel of what we want to play during the weekend.
So I want to say congratulations to them. I think they are doing a great job, because the course is in the best shape, and it's starting -- on Monday, it really wasn't in great shape. So that's a lot better, because you get really used to, you play three, four, five days with the same conditions, and you will have a better feeling on the weekend.

Q. You mentioned earlier that you have been working on your putting. Was that the only area of your game that you were not happy with last week?
LORENA OCHOA: Well, I was happy with my putter last week in Phoenix. But there is room to improve. A lot of people ask me and are mentioning what I'm doing on the putting green and what is the changes.
I am working really hard and being extremely -- trying to have really a perfect stroke. And I feel those improvements, but I can't wait for that to be 100 percent solved and to see more putts going in.

Q. Your fiancé, he's a busy man; does he like golf? Does he play golf? Will he use those miles to fly to tournaments? How is it going to work in your career?
LORENA OCHOA: I'm going to keep all of that private. I don't really like to share that. He's very supportive. He's coming as much as he can, and he's always there for me. So that's as much as I would like to say.
He was there last weekend, and he's going to come as much as he can. But so far, it's been good. I'm happy.
DANA GROSS-RHODE: Thank you all very much for joining us, and Lorena, good luck this weekend.

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