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 4, 1999

Dottie Pepper


RHONDA GLENN: Dottie Pepper played her second round today in 69 strokes. She is 7-under par, and at last look she was only three strokes off the lead. Another good performance in the Women's Open. How do you feel about your position now, and also tell us your attitude going into the round today.

DOTTIE PEPPER: Well, I think I've continued to get a little bit more comfortable as each day has gone on; with the weather delays we had on Wednesday, I only played 8 holes. So I came in here thinking I had a leg up, because I had played so many rounds here, and all of a sudden I was a few holes short. But, you know, I've continued to hit the ball and my irons extremely well. I've driven the ball -- though I don't feel completely comfortable with the driver yet, I've driven it pretty well. I've played the par 5s particularly well. I think I'm taking advantage of the areas I need to take advantage of, and I'm still three shots behind Inkster. You know, I think you have to continue to be patient, because it's easy to get caught up with -- there's lots of red numbers on the board; I need to make this putt; I need to do this; I need to do that. Where I think the old mentality holds true, where you have to take it as it comes to you; and if you hit some great shots, go ahead and make some birdies. But there are some holes out there where par is really a good score on.

RHONDA GLENN: She had four birdies on the day and only one bogey. You putted very well today according to your stats. You had 26 putts.

DOTTIE PEPPER: 26 putts. A little -- I don't know that it's completely indicative, but most of the greens -- the only green that I missed and could not put from the fringe was the green I missed at the 6th. I don't know how many others. I don't know what it says I hit in total, but every other green I did miss, I putted from; so by and large I hit some pretty darned good iron shots. And you know, speed has been great. Most of them have -- if they have not gone in, they have gotten to the hole; so I had a read coming back, and most of them have been tap-ins or two-footers coming back. Nothing horrible.

Q. Are you surprised by all the red numbers out there, for a U.S. Open?

DOTTIE PEPPER: I think you have to look a lot at the weather. To be that far under par and have only a one-shot lead, I think you've got to have a lot of things cooperating. Number one is the weather. The amount of rain we had on Wednesday really softened the golf course, and it not only makes the greens softer, but it also makes the fairways played wider. So your misses are not quite so bad, and the greens were not horribly fast yesterday at all because they were so wet. They were growing so quickly. On top of that, the wind has not blown. I think we had a half-a-club wind at one point today, and that was really about it. You know, Mother Nature is dictating a lot more of this than what has been termed an "easy" golf course; not something I agree with.

Q. Do you feel the course played tougher today than yesterday?

DOTTIE PEPPER: I think it was a little tougher today. They had some pins that were in the hole -- I think some pretty tricky spots. Just barely over crowns, or just, you know, if you missed it just 15 feet to the right, it would have slid back down like it did at the 16th. But it's still rewarding good golf shots. I think you've got pretty good ball-strikers on the board, and I think that's part of the reason why you're seeing some numbers like this as well.

Q. Was it rolling faster today, too?

DOTTIE PEPPER: Greens were definitely quicker today. Definitely.

Q. I noticed you said that despite the good round, you were still three shots behind Inkster. Do you think that because she's a veteran, she is more likely to held up under the pressure of Saturday and Sunday than Kelli?

DOTTIE PEPPER: It's only Friday. I can't speculate. But Juli is a really good front-runner. Really good front-runner. It's not whether it's Kelli or Juli or whatever. I think Juli is just a really good front-runner. We'll have to play hard. But it's only Friday.

Q. Dottie, you've known me long enough to know that I am not into controversy. But because of the foreign dominance of the U.S. Open, is there more of an effort on the part of the American pros to play a little harder and work a little harder coming into the U.S. Open this year?

DOTTIE PEPPER: No, I don't think so. That's been the big beat of the media over the last however many months since the Dinah Shore in preparation for this. And no, I don't think so. It's a major. That's all there is to it. Everybody is trying to play hard.

Q. You eluded to this a little bit, but is there a different mentality when you see that it's an Open, and yet you see so many red numbers, and usually in an Open you just play for par. Do you have to think differently the way the course is playing now?

DOTTIE PEPPER: I think the conditions being just a little softer is letting you think like: I can make some birdies. You're not necessarily playing front yardage all the time. We are playing long irons to release 20, 25 feet; when normally if we had no rain on Wednesday, it would have been a lot more than that. So I think the conditions are letting you play a little more aggressive and as you need to maybe think a little more aggressively.

Q. On No. 2 and 3, there was a bottleneck there. Did the slow play bother you at all?

DOTTIE PEPPER: It wasn't as slow today as it was yesterday. We had our annual USGA picnic on the 7th hole yesterday with two-and-a-half groups there. It inevitably happens every year on some par 3. You feel like you're getting ahead of the ballgame by getting an early tee time, actually on Thursday or Friday.

RHONDA GLENN: What do you think happens on No. 7 that slows it down?

DOTTIE PEPPER: I think it's probably the most difficult of the par 3s. The wind is crossways in the trees, because you can't really get a real feel for it, and shots that missed the green with a difficult pitch.

RHONDA GLENN: Club selection being one factor?


Q. In your mind, have you more or less thought about what the target is going to be and what you think it's going to take to win this tournament yet?

DOTTIE PEPPER: I don't know. I think the weather forecast is probably going to dictate more than anything. If the wind blows, I think the scores are going to go up. I'm really not trying to put a number on it. I'm trying to go out there and make as many birdies as I can and get as far into the red as I can and see what happens on Sunday.

Q. How does the U.S. Women's Open rank for you?

DOTTIE PEPPER: You know, people have asked me that question, and I'm in this for the big picture. I'm not in it to just win majors or X numbers of tournaments. My goal is the Hall of Fame, and it's going to take more than two Dinah's to get in there. I'll take whatever -- whatever it takes to get in there, and it can be eight more regular tournaments. It could be four more majors. But if an Open is amongst them, that would be great. But I'm not going to freeze frame myself to think that's the only way I'm going to get in it is by winning an Open.

Q. How many have you played?


Q. Just curious, considering what you've done this year, and really over the last 18 months, is your confidence level as high as it's ever been, and how do you think that will play into this weekend?

DOTTIE PEPPER: I think there's a trust factor between the golf swing I have right now and myself, and with the putter and myself right now. And I think if you can go out there and trust that what you've done in preparation to get here is going to be good enough, then just go ahead and try not to get in your own way and let it happen, and that's -- that's kind of where I'm at right now. Trust that all the preparation I've put into this -- and it's not just for this tournament. It's for the entire year. It's really got me on the right track.

RHONDA GLENN: Good playing. Thanks very much.


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