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September 14, 2011

David Toms


JOEL SCHUCHMANN: David Toms, thanks for joining us here, playing in your 15th BMW Championship, currently 10th in the Presidents Cup standings, 20th in the FedExCup standings. Obviously a lot of work for you this week but you're in good position. Maybe some opening comments about this week.
DAVID TOMS: Obviously I need to have a good week here for many different reasons, but it's a hard golf course. It's a long golf course. I played early this morning, and I hit a wood into every par-3 if that tells you anything. It'll be one of those weeks where I just have to be patient. It doesn't set up that well for me, but just get through it and hopefully putt well and somehow get there in the end.

Q. Can you just talk about your spot in the Presidents Cup? That 8 to 12 range is pretty tight right there.
DAVID TOMS: Yeah, it's going to come down to this week. There's so many guys that have a chance. Even though I'm at No. 10 right now, I'm going to at least try to hold that position, move up a little bit with a great week, but a lot of guys right behind me, so a lot of guys I need to beat this week in the tournament. I've been in similar situations before, so I'll just have to go out and play well. It really is -- it's not something I'm thinking about too much. It's a hard enough golf course. I've got to go out there and play it. Hopefully in the end it'll work out for me.

Q. Is it hard to play well on courses you don't like?
DAVID TOMS: Yeah, but you know, it's a funny story. I remember at Kingsmill one year, it had to be '99, because I was on like the 13th hole or 12th hole, and I remember hitting it down there and missing the green with a wedge or something, and I told my caddie to take a picture, I'll never come back here, and then I won it the next two years in a row.
You just don't know. It's really all about golf. It's sometimes about that one swing that feels great and you get a key on something or one putt that you do a little something different with your routine or your stroke and you make it. It happens all the time.
So to say that -- I've probably played my best golf on courses that I like and I've had results over the years, but certainly feeling comfortable on the course is a positive thing. I've never played particularly well here, even before the redo. I've had some decent tournaments but nothing where I would say I had a chance to win necessarily. I think actually one year I played with Tiger maybe in the last group here on a Saturday, so obviously I was in good position that week. But never really contended the last few holes on Sunday.
I'm hoping this week will be a good one for me. I have to draw on something rather than -- other than good performance in the past. I'll just have to go -- played with a lot of confidence the last few months, so just draw on that and go out and play golf.

Q. Considering how well you played in May, especially that two-week stretch obviously, are you frustrated that you're not a little bit higher up in the FedExCup points?
DAVID TOMS: Maybe so, but you know, I got hurt the middle of the summer with a bad hip, so that kept me out for a few weeks that if I would have played just decent, I would have probably been okay. Then had a couple of good weeks at Bridgestone and then the PGA the week after, and then played good in Greensboro and then my back went out on me the pro-am day of Barclays. So it's been a little bit of a struggle since with that and something I deal with almost every year, and it just happened to be at a bad time.
If I would have played healthy during the summer until now, I think I would have been in a lot better position.

Q. Are you healthy now?
DAVID TOMS: I feel good, yeah. Obviously I wish it was a little bit warmer. That helps. Feels like January in Louisiana right now. But I've played at La Costa when it was cold and wet and played great. We'll see. We'll see how it goes.

Q. I wanted to get your thoughts on the No. 1 ranking in the world. A little bit on how you look at -- if you look at Luke that way or even Lee before him, and the context of this question would be did Tiger skew what the No. 1 player in the world is supposed to look like?
DAVID TOMS: Probably so. You know, obviously he played great golf for a long time, and so now, we were used to a guy winning a lot of tournaments and being No. 1, and certainly Luke has played great and so has Westwood. They've played great golf around the world, not just in Europe but around the world, and they're very consistent.
A lot of times -- when Westwood was up there it seemed like a matter of timing. It seemed like he was right there in so many majors, and if anything would have just gone right for him he would have already gotten those titles. And the way Luke has played, it seems any time you look at a leaderboard on Sunday he's up there. Especially he's not a power player, and to play the kind of golf he's played week after week, it says a lot about him, about the way he works at it and about his overall game and certainly about his confidence.
I think he's deserving of it. I mean, there are a lot of other guys who win tournaments, but they'll go away for six weeks and you never see them on the leaderboard again. But for him, maybe he hasn't won a lot, but certainly he has a lot of opportunities. I think he deserves that ranking.

Q. Was there ever a time in the middle or early part of your career where you went chasing more distance?
DAVID TOMS: I chase it every week. It seems like I ask for another driver every week and always go back to the same one. It's just such an advantage on the courses that we play. Just what took place this morning, I played at 8:30 and I hit a wood into every par-3, where you take the guy that's the power hitter, he probably hit a 4- or 5-iron. Then you have 468, 480, 500, 615, 620, you have all those holes, it's just a huge advantage, and it's not just here. It seems like every week to be quite honest. It's certainly an advantage, and guys chase that length all the time, and the reason they do it is the golf courses that we play.

Q. Is there any inspiration you've drawn from a guy who's reached the top of the rankings system --
DAVID TOMS: Sure, or even when I was up there pretty high in the world, guys would look -- you're doing it in a different way, and really it amounts to having good weeks when the course is really hard for everybody and hard to score on and then take advantage of the weeks where you do have an advantage with accuracy and you don't necessarily have to have the length.
I really like those courses where I can hit a driver but I have to hit it really straight, and then the other guys are having to think about having to hit one and they end up hitting 3-wood or rescue or things like that. Those are the type of courses I need to play well on. Here where everybody is hitting driver it's just a big advantage. I have to be really good with the long irons and be extremely good around the greens.

Q. You're not suggesting any of those woods on the par-3 was a driver today, were they?
DAVID TOMS: No, they were all some type of hybrid type of wood. I guess in the old days it would have been a 5-wood for me. But I thought it was interesting; with the way they had the course set up today, almost every par-3 was the same length, and I would hope that when they set up the golf course moving forward for the rest of the week that we won't have that happen again.

Q. In your search for the extra 15 yards, Scott (Gneiser) told me that at some point your wife said stop worrying about the 15 yards. What was that exchange all about?
DAVID TOMS: Yeah, I mean, you try not to take golf home from the golf course, and a lot of times my wife has set me straight. Well, you've done plenty good with the way you've played for so long, so you're not doing yourself any justice to try to go out there and either change your golf swing or go to a longer driver or whatever. You've just got to really do the things that you do well and do them extremely well. It was funny, last week I was at home, and I had just got back to Boston, and when I played with Bubba the first or second day when I hit wedge into 18 and I said something about it, and my son asked me something about his golf swing. I said, don't worry about your swing, you need to go to the weight room, and that's when she went off on me again. She's like, will you get off of that? I'm like, okay, whatever. What are you going to do?

Q. Could you take us from the tee to the green on the 221-yard par-3, 12th hole, and then No. 14, another par-3 that's 218 yards?
DAVID TOMS: Imagine that, same distance.
You know, the 12th hole, it's one of those holes where it seems like guys are just trying to hit the green. It's a tough tee shot down the hill. If the wind is blowing you can't judge the distance too well. If they put the pin over on the right-hand side of the green you have a forced carry over bunker and stop it before it gets to the back bunker. Just a very difficult hole. I think anybody would take par there all four days and move on.
When you get around to 14, it's an easier tee shot. It's a deep green that slopes right to left, and depending on club selection you can get the ball close there. It tends to feed towards the hole, and it can be a birdie opportunity. The problem is it's such a long shot you have to hit a really good one.
JOEL SCHUCHMANN: David Toms, thank you.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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