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


June 24, 2010

Padraig Harrington


MARK STEVENS: Okay. I'd like to welcome Padraig Harrington. Padraig shot a 64 today. He's 25 putts to get there. Just talk a little bit about your round, the strengths of it and then we'll take some questions.
PADRAIG HARRINGTON: Obviously I got off to a very quick start and kind of was trying to push hard after that. You know, when things are going for you, you might as well run with it.
And I think I drove it to a fairway on my fifth hole, the 14th and made bogey, and when I didn't chip and putt the next, I kind of said, well, maybe saved the temptation for the rest of the day. I made a nice birdie at the next, holed it up to hit it close on 18.
Hit a few nice shots on the way home with wedges, and then I obviously hit it strong there on 5 -- or 4. Was it 4? Yeah. And then holed it on 5. So it was nice.
There was some, I'd say some good putts holed, had three 2s on the card which can never do any harm. I was hoping to birdie the last one, last par-3. It would always be nice to take those four holes in two, but probably about -- I'd say I holed some good putts, so I'm happy about that and I can't complain about the score.
MARK STEVENS: Thanks. Questions?

Q. I think you've played here one year before. How much local knowledge do you have? Some of the things look familiar?
PADRAIG HARRINGTON: Some of it. Some of it is familiar from the last time, and I did at times maybe the odd pin position, wasn't 100 percent sure how tight that pin was or how big a slope, how big a runoff was at the edge of the green. And once or twice that was an issue out there, but on a day like today where things were going for me, it didn't really cost me.

Q. What prompted you to add this to your schedule?
PADRAIG HARRINGTON: Just no tournaments between now and the Open. So far I'm playing in the JP McManus Pro Am, two-day Pro Am in a week's time, so that was my only competitive play, and I decided that as much as I like practicing, I better get out on the golf course and do some competitive play and see what my game is like. You know, I've already got one go at it rather than beating balls on the range.

Q. How about compared to last week? Is this a nice change of pace?
PADRAIG HARRINGTON: It's a different change of pace, but now that I'm leading the tournament, obviously I'm back to the old grind again.
You know, just feels like -- you know, obviously the greens are purer out there, they're receptive and you really do feel like you can make some birdies. If you hit it close, you're confident you can get some putts in a row and you're not weary of leaving yourself two-footers or three-footer, so it is nice, as I said, but once you're up there in contention, the three days' work won't be too easy when you're at the top of the leaderboard let's say in terms of you still have to knock them down and grind your way through and work hard.

Q. It seems to be the consensus of the people so far that the scoring conditions for those who got off early today were kind of ideal.
PADRAIG HARRINGTON: Yeah. Yes. You know, obviously it's a bit windier than yesterday, but conditions are ideal. The greens are really nice to putt on, and I think they will be this afternoon as well. I think the holes are at a nice pace. They're really receptive.
I would think that generally the golf course is in great condition that leads to go scoring. The better condition the golf course is in, the better the score. If you want players to shoot bad scores, just get the course in bad condition and we won't be holing putts and we'll be losing our patience and that. So you know, it's a testament to the golf course when you see good scoring that it's in great condition.

Q. Is the lack of wind any kind of a factor?
PADRAIG HARRINGTON: There was a little bit of wind later on in the day, but lack of wind obviously makes it a lot easier for us. When you've got no wind, even pros tend to play substantially better without the wind, and certainly early on, the wind got up on my sixth hole onwards, but it wasn't strong enough at any stage. It was never a nuisance.

Q. How hard or how easy is to kind of unfry your mind after the U.S. Open? Do you look at the course and say, I'm back or is there kind of a mental realization period after something like that?
PADRAIG HARRINGTON: Yeah. You realize after a U.S. Open on the Sunday night, Monday, how tired you are, how much effort you put in over there the previous seven days. And that's another thing with a U.S. Open, it's at least seven days. You're grinding from the Monday onwards.
I think it can go two ways the following week. You know, it's important probably that I have started well in this tournament because if I didn't start very well, it wouldn't be very easy to have to -- you know, you need a little bit of adrenaline after a hard week like last week. And obviously when you do well in a tournament, you have that focus. But if I shot a couple over par, it would be a tough grind going out there tomorrow.

Q. You talked about pushing hard out there. I don't know if you're aware of what scores it's taken to win this tournament the last couple of years.
PADRAIG HARRINGTON: Yeah, 21-under won last year, I heard, so that is certainly intimidating when you're starting off 72 holes. I know it hasn't been that every year, but yeah, I was aware of that. And certainly, you know, even shooting 6-under it'll take a lot of work to get to 22-under. It just shows how well Kenny played last year.

Q. Is that a take out there on a course like this?
PADRAIG HARRINGTON: You gotta think you gotta make birdies, yeah. You really do. You gotta poach first and take your chance every now and again that you will get yourself in trouble, but hopefully you'll recover. But you've gotta take a chance to make plenty of birdies.

Q. Does that take you out of your comfort zone at all?
PADRAIG HARRINGTON: No. Now that I've started well, no. As I said, if you were shooting over par, you're getting frustrated and you're losing patience out there.
If you're shooting 4, 5, 6-under par out there, you're thinking that this is great, and obviously putts are dropping. Obviously you're making the birdies. So you know, it kind of splits a little bit. When there's low scoring, half the field gets frustrated and the other half think it's great.

Q. (No microphone) between a course like Pebble and a course like this?
PADRAIG HARRINGTON: Tell you, that Sunday night, no way. You know, as a pro, you gotta play both and you can't choose. I shot -- I think I shot 20 -- I think the lowest I shot in four rounds, I think I shot 25-under and lost in a tournament, and certainly I'm pretty good on the tough grinds as well. So you just gotta -- every course you go to, every hole -- this is going to be a cliche, but every course, every hole and every shot has to be taken individually. You know, it's one shot at a time.

Q. Last three weeks someone from Europe has won on the TOUR. And it's been like 32 years or something since that happened. Can you talk about that, what that means to you?
PADRAIG HARRINGTON: Who were the three that did it 32 years ago? Just curious.
MARK STEVENS: There hasn't been. That's how far back that they've searched the records, so since '68 we know it has not happened.
PADRAIG HARRINGTON: 42 years. No, what you've seen happen before is obviously -- you might see I think Woody or Sandy Lyle went back to back when it came to the Masters. They won it before or after or something like that. So it might have happened at that stage.
But yeah, it would be very rare. As I've been saying for quite a while, European golf is very strong and there's a lot of good young players finding their way in the game, learning how to win and given the opportunity, you've seen three in the last three weeks and a few others during the year. There's plenty of good young players out there who are, you know, as they get older and maturer and more experienced will win more.

Q. At the U.S. Open do you get discouraged when you see your score and how you play, you personally or are you able to put it in perspective like, hey, even par won this thing? Do you come out of it saying, gees, my game has gone to hell?
PADRAIG HARRINGTON: No. It makes no difference to me whether I shoot level par and win a tournament, 10-over par and win a tournament or 20-under par and win a tournament. At the end of the day it's the win that's the important thing.
Last week I shot 9-over par, I finished 22nd. So I was -- I was nine shots behind the lead. So that's how I look at it. I don't look at it as -- I look at it other ways. Like I look at last week and go, I found it so intimidating in 2000 and I found it quite comfortable last week, so I said, well, in 10 years I've actually improved as a player. In 2000 it was really intimidating. Last week I thought, well, I just didn't perform last week is the way I look at it.
So there's lots of little ways -- and I then I do my own personal stats which show up different things, and you know, from that you figure out. But it is not -- it's irrelevant the actual -- whether you shoot 74. Like when they change a par-5 to a par-4, that makes no difference to the pros at the end of the day how many strokes it took to hole regardless of whether it was 1-under par or level par.

Q. Can you comment on Rory? He seems to be -- I don't want to say ahead of everybody, but seems to be (indiscernible).
PADRAIG HARRINGTON: That's five I've got in my head at this stage this year. Lee Westwood has got to be very happy that I said young European. (Laughs).
Yeah, you know, Rory is a tremendous talent, and he -- you know, as he gains maturity, yeah, I think some people mature earlier than others. You know, I don't know what -- he was on TOUR when he was 18 years of age anywhere or close to it. I didn't play professional golf until I was 24.
We're all slightly different when we mature and when we get to our peak. He obviously has incredible talent, has got there a lot quicker than most. And his winning this year has been a big help to him. There was a lot of external pressure being put on him which could have hindered his performances, but that win is certainly a big pressure relief and will allow him to develop naturally as a player going forward.

Q. (Indiscernible) real good run with the PGA in '08. Is it frustrating at all or do you just say, hey, look I'm changing my swing?
PADRAIG HARRINGTON: You know, I'm always changing my swing. I'm always doing it. Has it been frustrating, no. No, lots of times -- my golf during the period I've had some really solid periods where, you know, at the end of last year where I think the tension nearly every week I played.
You know, there's been some nice runs in that period, and the one thing I can look back over, though, is 18 months, two months, two years since then or like that, all of it, all of my play is very much controlled by me and determined by me. There hasn't been a situation where I've been searching for anything.
I know, you know, if I don't perform well, I know why I haven't performed well. And if I do perform well, I know why it's been working well. It's just not -- sometimes there's temptation to put results on the long finger maybe. Results aren't always the primary goal at times. Other times they become very much so.
At the end of last year, as I said, I was very much into my results, and most weeks I was there or thereabouts. Obviously, you know, I've had a good few tournaments this year where I've contended nicely. I haven't finished tournaments off this year which has been quite a difference from other years.
My Sunday rounds of golf I have not really had -- I've attended a lot of times a number of tournaments where we didn't touch the lead and just shot the 71, 72, 70 whatever, which gets me. Even though I was somewhat in contention, just finishing Top 10 which really doesn't do too much for you.
So yeah, it's within my controls. It's up to me to do the right things, and it hasn't been frustrating at all.

Q. With the success of the young European players, how does that bode for the Ryder Cup this year?
PADRAIG HARRINGTON: It obviously does bode well. The Ryder Cup tends at times it's hard to win it as a favorite team at times, so I'm sure there will be no doubt that the U. S. will try and maybe try and make out that the Europeans are favored and try and play that card.
Certainly the Europeans used it for a long number of years. Yeah, the Europeans are strong. As I said, I just dropped out of the automatic qualification, so I have to work hard to get on the team, which you know, that means there's plenty of competition, there's plenty of guys there. And it's not an easy team to qualify for, which is always a good sign that you've got a strong team.
MARK STEVENS: We'll just take one more question. Everybody good? Okay. Thanks a lot, Padraig. Good luck tomorrow.

Q. Can you go over your card?
MARK STEVENS: If you can just go over your birdies real quick.
PADRAIG HARRINGTON: Starting on the 10th hole I hit 3-wood, 6-iron to 15 feet, holed it. Second hole I hit 9-iron to 35 feet, holed it. 12th hole I hit 3-wood, 9-iron to three feet. And 14, hit my driver through the fairway, hit my 8-iron through the green, poker shot to 15 feet.
16, I hit a 6-iron to 35 feet, holed it. 18, I hit a wedge to three feet, holed it. Four, I hit a 7-iron to a foot. And five, I hit a 5-iron to probably 45 feet and holed it.
MARK STEVENS: All right. Thanks a lot, Padraig.

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