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


October 19, 2011

Webb Simpson


MARK STEVENS: Thanks for joining us. We'll just go ahead and get started. We just had Luke in here for his press conference. You guys are paired together for the first two rounds.
Just talk about your thoughts coming into the week and what you're looking to accomplish, and then we'll take some questions.
WEBB SIMPSON: Yeah, absolutely. Well, going into the week I'm obviously feeling good about my game. I played well last week. Unfortunately didn't win, but had a great opportunity there to win in the playoff.
You know, I played these golf courses a lot in junior golf. This will be my third year now playing in this golf tournament, so I feel comfortable on the golf courses.
You know, it's been nice to be at home for a day and a half to rest up a little bit for this last week. I'm feeling good, and I'm sure Luke is ready. It'll be exciting playing with him.
You know, kind of our main deal for the week is going to be trying to compete and win the golf tournament. We obviously want to win the Money List, but in order to do that, we got to finish strong and have a good week.
So that'll be the goal, but at the same time we're going to try and do as well as we can in this golf tournament and try and compete and have a chance to win on Sunday.
MARK STEVENS: Thank you. Questions.

Q. Just sort of some housekeeping. Wondering whether you played any of the AJGA Polo events down here, and if so, how you did? Do you recall when Vijay won here was Tesori on the bag for him? Just a couple fact-check things there for you.
WEBB SIMPSON: Yeah, I played maybe three years, two or three years in the Polo junior tournament there, the match play. So that was quite a few years ago. But like I said, played the last few years. You know, they changed the course. I can't remember when, maybe early 2000s. They changed Magnolia. They seem to play pretty similar every year.
I know you guys got some rain, so I'm sure it'll be a little softer. I do feel comfortable out there, and it's nice that Paul has played well there and had some success.
You know, I haven't finished quite as well as I wanted to the last couple years. '09 I got sick; made the cut and had to withdraw. And last year I think I finished somewhere around 40th or 45th. So looking to improve there, for sure.

Q. What do you recall about the TOUR Championship and sitting with Luke Donald at the end and you guys trying to figure out how this thing was going to end and who was going to have the most points and all that?
WEBB SIMPSON: Yeah, it was interesting because we were sitting there together with our families. We were chatting about the golf tournament and the ending and the possible outcomes. It was a little weird, I guess, because we're both trying to figure out if we're going to beat each other, and at the same trying to see who wins overall. Yeah, it was fun. I think it was a cool ending to the year just how it came down to the last couple holes. I think that's what everybody wanted.
But we kind of have another little mini tournament here for another award. That was for FedEx and now this is for the Money List. So I'm sure the feelings will be pretty similar to the way we were feeling then.

Q. Do you prefer it where it's cut and dry, you know how much money it is and you don't have to figure out FedExCup projections, world rankings calculations, you just know exactly what's in front of you?
WEBB SIMPSON: Yeah, it makes it a lot easier to know. You don't want to think about it too much while you're playing. But at the same time, it is nice it know, Hey, if he does this or I do this it's done. We're not dependant on -- well, we are a little bit dependent on other players, but not as much as the TOUR Championship. There's not as many variables to be accounted for.

Q. How do you approach the first couple rounds? You can't win a tournament or Thursday or Friday, but you do have Luke in your sights directly. How you approach the pairing this week?
WEBB SIMPSON: Yeah, I mean, I think it's going to be -- it'll obviously be somewhat new for me because I've never been this situation before. But I think my No. 1 goal/challenge will be to not get too involved in what he's doing. I think the way Tiger Woods was and still can be is a lot of guys can get involved, too involved in watching him play and how he's playing.
I'll take that kind of mindset into the first couple days and try and focus extra hard on what I'm doing and how I want to play the Palm and Magnolia Courses. Just really get into our course strategy. The more I can focus on myself, the less I'll think about Luke and the rest of the guys in the field.

Q. Webb, just now that we've unconfused from the FedEx list, let me throw a little more confusion into it. Four things on the line this week: money title, that nice trophy with Arnold Palmer's name on it, the five-year exemption, and possible Player of the Year. How do you rank those four things?
WEBB SIMPSON: Man, I mean, they are all great honors. My caddie and I have gone back and forth talking, Would you rather win Player of the Year or the Money List title? You know, I don't know which one is more important to me, but I know that they're all great.
You know, to have a five-year exemption, five-year job security on the tour is priceless just given the nature of the game. So, you know, I'm already -- you know, talking to my wife yesterday, we just said, If we don't win the money title or Player of the Year, in no way will we be disappointed.
We obviously want to do those things, but this year has been a success all throughout. Whatever happens we're going to be happy, but we do want to finish strong and try to have a clean sweep. It would be awesome.
I know I'm up against Luke and Keegan and Nick Watney who have all had great years. But I think playing well this week would only help.

Q. Just curious, when you look at Luke, I'm just wondering whether you can talk about the season he's had and what in your mind he's done that has been impressive. Basically having a crack at both money title is pretty impressive, No. 1. Just sort of in your mind, what makes him such a daunting adversary this week as you guys shoot this thing our?
WEBB SIMPSON: Yeah, I mean, I think it's clear that for all practical purposes - and I think most guys would agree - that he is the best player in the world. To play both tours in a year and to have the success he's had winning on both tours, being on top of the European Tour Money List and on top of the PGA Tour Money List most of year is really incredible, especially since he has a family and they've been traveling with him. He's just done an incredible job of balancing it all together.
I think playing with him a few times now, what makes him such a great player is the way he's able to get ball in the hole. He's got such a great short game; he makes big putts when he needs to. I just think all year he's played just so consistently. I think he's had 13 Top 10s out of 18 starts on our tour. He's been great to see and watch.
You know, honestly, just try to come after him and try to bring him a little competition just because he has been the best player in the world now for a while.

Q. Could you compare yourself to Luke? Did you see similarities in any way?
WEBB SIMPSON: Yeah, we've had similar years. He's had a few chances to win and won one time; I've had a few chances to win and won twice. His finishes, when you look at his stats and mine, they seem to be similar. I played a few more times than he has. I've only gotten to play with him a few times.
In term of our game, I hit it just a little further than he does, but I don't think there are too many differences in the way we play.

Q. Webb, did you add this tournament or last week's just because of the battle with him, or had you already previously planned all this?
WEBB SIMPSON: Well, I was waiting to see what he was going to do. I figured if I was going to play, he was going to play. If he was going to play, I was going to play. So I didn't rule either of 'em out, but also didn't want to commit to either of 'em before I was sure I was going to play.
It's just a big year, into the off-season and Presidents Cup, and so I had to weigh a lot of things together. So it was kind of a last-minute decision, even know underneath it all I really did want to win the Money List. So I was prepared to come down and play whatever I needed to play.

Q. How well do you know him? Have you gone out and had dinner or anything like that? Or is it casual, jus say hi on the range once in a while?
WEBB SIMPSON: Yeah, I mean, our wives are friends. Luke and I don't know each other well, but he's a Polo guy; I'm an Polo guy. We've got to know each other a little bit. We have a good relationship but haven't gone to dinner yet. I don't suppose we'll go to dinner this week. (Laughter.)

Q. The winner will have to buy dinner, I guess.
WEBB SIMPSON: Yeah, yeah. I doubt we'll go to dinner after this week. Maybe next year.

Q. You mentioned it was definitely a last-minute thing. When was the decision made last week to actually put your name on the list for this week?
WEBB SIMPSON: Well, we were kind of waiting until the last minute to know whether or not he was going to come. But, you know, we figured we were going to probably come play anyway, because even if he didn't commit, I'm sitting there in contention going into the weekend, I have a bad weekend and I don't quite make 70,000 or whatever I needed and I'd feel pretty dumb.
So we were kind of just waiting on him a little bit. More than anything, we were just -- we were pretty confident we were going to play.

Q. Was it something you signed up for before your round on Friday? What was the timing on that?
WEBB SIMPSON: I'm not sure. I think I was committed Friday afternoon.

Q. Just real quick, Webb, how did winning in Greensboro change your year, if at all? Did it change your approach down the stretch?
WEBB SIMPSON: Well, I think it was a relief more than anything because I had come so close so many times this year and didn't quite get it done. So to finally win and answer all the questions I had been wondering and I think a lot people been wondering was a huge relief and confidence builder.
So I think it just totally helped me propel and win in Boston. So it was huge for me.

Q. Using the Wyndam as sort of a springboard into the rest of the season, did it change the way that you approach things, or no?
WEBB SIMPSON: You know, I think just in terms of confidence, I started to really believe in myself that I could win and that I did belong. Yeah, I mean, I think it just helped me to really want to compete more and get in that situation and win more.
So I definitely think it helped in a lot of areas, but especially in terms of my confidence.

Q. Could you give us a rundown about the Wake Forest thing, which I guess was Sunday night? Did you ever make it there and did you talk to Arnold? Did the Money List and trophies and all that stuff get kicked around at all?
WEBB SIMPSON: I drove back to Charlotte Sunday night. I didn't get home until 11:00, so I just went out Monday morning. It was good to see everyone. We hadn't had the pro-am there in a few years. Most of the golfers came and played, and a lot people were congratulating me and all that and saying they were pulling for me.
So it was good to get the sport from all the Wake alum, especially Arnold.

Q. What did Arnold say, if anything in particular?
WEBB SIMPSON: He just told me, Great playing this year. He was nice enough to write me a letter about three weeks ago congratulating me on the victory. He was pulling for me there in Sea Island and was hoping I was going to pull it out. He couldn't have been nicer.

Q. Did you commit after hearing that Luke committed or did you just commit not knowing?
WEBB SIMPSON: I don't even remember, but -- I don't remember the timing of it, but I was going to play pretty much no matter what. It was a 90%err for me.
MARK STEVENS: Everybody good? Thanks for joining us. Thanks for your time, Webb.
WEBB SIMPSON: Appreciate it.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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