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July 1, 2010

Tom Lehman


PHIL STAMBAUGH: Tom, I thought I would have you in, obviously coming off your win at the Senior PGA Championship, your last Champions Tour event, you've been in the top 5 in five of six tournaments. You're coming up to Canada, where I looked up, you had a third in 1994 up here in the Canadian Open.
TOM LEHMAN: I believe that's right.
PHIL STAMBAUGH: Just thoughts about coming to the inaugural Montréal Championship.
TOM LEHMAN: You know, I am really impressed by the enthusiasm of everybody out here, the volunteers, the fans, the golf course is very, very good. First time in Montréal for a tournament. I've been here for a day. I was here for a day after the Open in 1995 Monday doing an outing somewhere nearby, but never played an event here so I'm really happy to be here.
PHIL STAMBAUGH: You didn't get on the golf course yesterday?
TOM LEHMAN: I played the Pro-Am yesterday.
PHIL STAMBAUGH: Your impressions?
TOM LEHMAN: Yesterday was interesting. We had three seasons in one day. We haven't quite got to winter but we encountered some spring, summer and fall.
I like the course. There's some variety. There's a lot of room out there. It's a really neat golf course, and so there's a lot of pin positions on the greens, there's huge greens.
PHIL STAMBAUGH: You played well and won a playoff there at the Senior PGA and you missed the cut at the United States Open. Your game coming into this week?
TOM LEHMAN: My game is good. I'm not sure that I won that playoff as much as they lost that playoff. The playoff at the PGA was unique in manym many ways.
But I played very well in Denver, and the U.S. Open, obviously, there's no room for error or and I made some glaring mistakes, missed the cut by a shot. I felt like I played all right. So therefore, I feel like my game coming into this week is pretty good.

Q. Freddie was just talking about how he felt, for a first-time event --
TOM LEHMAN: It certainly seems -- I'm not sure, wasn't this at one time a Canadian Tour event at this site?
PHIL STAMBAUGH: They had a Skins Game.
TOM LEHMAN: Just the way the Tour guys, the infrastructure is completely put together, the stands, everything seems to be like it's been done before. So it doesn't seem like a first-time deal.
I think the way I remember from The Presidents Cup, I know that the golf fans here are very enthusiastic and to me, that's really the big thing is the support from the community.
You really feel that there's a lot of enthusiasm for this event, and I think that makes every player to a person feel very welcome.

Q. (Inaudible.)
TOM LEHMAN: Is there a hockey team here? (Laughter) There might be one hockey team.
Well, you know, you think of Montréal and you think of hockey. But I grew up in Minnesota, which, again, is a hockey state, and a football state, maybe the Vikings. People don't understand, people in northern climate, they jam a lot of stuff into those winter months. So I'm not all surprised that golf is big in Montréal. I feel like people that are limited make the very best use of their time and they love to do anything with having to be outside, so I'm not surprised.

Q. How confident are you?
TOM LEHMAN: I feel -- well, I'm very confident in my game. I think my game is good. So therefore, my expectations are high. I know that if I play well, I'm going to have a chance to win this week. I also know there's a lot of really good players here and the competition is very tough. So if I don't play well, it will be very difficult to have a good week.

Q. Inaudible.
TOM LEHMAN: Definitely have a better chance of winning. There's a tournament that I play on the other tour, the courses have gotten significantly longer and I'm hitting way longer shots into the greens than I used to. Just give you an example, playing with Mickelson at Memorial, I talked with my caddie, what number, if there's a water hazard or something that I have to carry, what number is my comfort level, is it a 260 carry or a 270. That's kind of like borderline for me to hit my tee shot 270. I can hit it 300 but 30 of it is roll.
So Phil, I asked him the same thing, what number is it for you, what do you carry, and he said, 310. So, okay. And he's not alone out there. There's a lot of guys if it's 300 -- so when a guy is carrying the ball 310 yard in the air and then getting some roll, then that puts him, you know, so far ahead of you, and that makes it hard to compete on those longer golf courses.
I was disappointed at the U.S. Open because that course I had a chance on, if I played well, could I have been there at the end. It turns out even par -- I know I could have played even par golf or better if I played my best.
Out here, I think that I have a chance every week.

Q. Is it a more relaxed feel out here than the PGA TOUR?
TOM LEHMAN: You know, it's kind of -- not just the camaraderie with a lot of players out here, but the competition is pretty intense and guys work hard and they play to win.
So when you get right down to the nitty-gritty, we may all be friends, but people are still very competitive, and I think that's what's made the Tour so competitive the last few years. That's been my experience the last year and a half and there are a lot of good players out here and guys who have maintained their games at a very high level and more guys coming soon. Kenny Perry is turning 50 and a too other guys are turning 50 pretty quickly and just going to get better.
So I think the Tour is in a really good position.

End of FastScripts

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