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March 13, 2003

David Peoples


JOHN BUSH: David, thank you for coming by, 7-under par 65. Congratulations on a nice start. How about some thoughts on your round.

DAVID PEOPLES: I just got off to a good start today, John. I was the first group out, so it was pretty calm and the course was really -- not a lot of wind. You could knock it in there fairly close and have a lot of birdie opportunities. Fortunately I made some putts today. Made a lot of good putts.

JOHN BUSH: Speaking of those birdie opportunities, could you take us through your round? You had seven on the day and no bogeys.

DAVID PEOPLES: Yeah, I birdied No. 1 from the right fringe, probably an 8-footer just off the green there.

Next birdie was from off the left fringe on the third hole. That was a pretty tough putt downhill, maybe 25 feet; that one curled in there.

Made another one from off the fringe on 4, the par 5, which was probably about 20 feet.

My next birdie came at 9. I hit a driver and 3-iron and just 2-putted there for a birdie.

10, I hit it in there maybe eight feet for birdie and knocked that one in.

12, I think I hit it in there about two to three feet on 12 and made that.

My last birdie came at 17, which was a driver, 4-iron just short of the green and chipped it up there about a foot and tapped it in. That was it.

JOHN BUSH: Is that ideal conditions, teeing off in the first group?

DAVID PEOPLES: Yeah, it doesn't get any better than teeing off in the first group, no wind, the greens haven't been walked on yet, at least for nine holes. So that's about as good as it gets as far as conditions.

We didn't see the group in front of us until I think the 16th green they were walking off. Yeah, it was a pretty easy way to play.

Q. When it looks like guys are going to be going low, do you adjust your thinking that pars are a disappointment and bogeys are a huge mistake?

DAVID PEOPLES: You try not to get that way. You try not to beat yourself up if you make pars or bogey, because it makes it that much harder because you know you have to go low.

Obviously, patience is good every week, but on this type of course it's even more. So you're waiting for those runs -- this type of course, you can get a run of birdies, and that's kind of what you're waiting on. They sometimes come in bunches like that.

Also, yesterday, not playing here, I wasn't playing well yesterday in the Pro-Am. I didn't realize scores would be that low. One of the caddies came back and he said, "Man, they are going to shoot 30-under here." And when I got to 7-under, that's when the light bulb went off in my head, it was like, you know, you do have to go low here.

It kind of put the thought in my head that birdies, without the wind, is going to be very important.

Q. Is it an easy golf course?

DAVID PEOPLES: I would say compared to what we play week-in, week-out, if you compare it to Bay Hill, it's easy, for sure, or TPC. There's definitely a lot of courses that are harder than this one.

Q. What makes it easy, the length?

DAVID PEOPLES: Yeah, well, the par 5s are pretty much reachable, most of them. Well, No. 4 is not reachable. No. 4 was a pretty darned good hole today.

But the other ones you can reach. It takes good shots to get there. There's a lot of holes where you're hitting 3-wood off the tee and you're left with anywhere from a 3-iron and a sand wedge into the green.

From the middle of the fairway with no wind, it's the conditions that make it easy, I think, that make it easier. If it was windy like you normally get in South Florida, then you'd be used to that -- that's the obstacle that I think the course needs.

Q. Do you enjoy this kind of week where you should shoot 69 and lose ground out there; do you enjoy where guys are making birdies and eagles or do you enjoy it when par is the main goal?

DAVID PEOPLES: I enjoy it either way. I do enjoy playing courses where you can make birdies.

I'm not sure why. I just seem like I'm a little more relaxed on a golf course where you need to make a lot of birdies. I seem to have a good temperament for that. I don't get impatient with them. I can handle it.

But you try to adjust, no matter if it's a U.S. Open style course or this. You try to adjust but I think I've had more success on the easier type of courses maybe than the harder ones.

Q. There were 18 first-time winners last year, TOUR record and there have been none this year. Could you just talk about it; do you think we are ready to see a run of that?

DAVID PEOPLES: You may not see a whole lot because they all won last year, so they have all got wins under their belt. But there's still a lot of very good players that are yet to win a title. So you know that will happen. I don't think it will be anywhere near what it was last year, though.

I pull more for the older guys, you know. I'm 43, so I kind of like to look up there and see Scott Hoch win or those guys.

Q. How has the state of your game been lately?

DAVID PEOPLES: I've been battling a little bit of tight back and ribs have been bothering me a little bit. I'm just trying to get a workout program going that's going to work for me without making myself too sore to play that week. I'm trying to figure out how to make that happen.

I've had to withdraw -- I withdrew from San Diego and Los Angeles because my back and my rib cage was bothering me, and then started doing some exercising and overdid it a little bit before Doral which cost me the first round. Then came back and missed the cut by a shot.

I feel fine this week, knock on wood. So, see how it goes.

End of FastScripts....

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