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June 9, 2001

Bob Estes


LEE PATTERSON: Thank you for coming to spend some time with us. Maybe just a couple thoughts as you head into the final round tomorrow, and then we'll open it up for questions.

BOB ESTES: Okay. Where do I start? Ask me a question. (Laughs).

Q. Today was, obviously, a little different from the scoring standpoint, but how did you feel out there?

BOB ESTES: Today was actually more my kind of golf. It was more like -- except for John's 63 -- it was more like a major championship, in effect, I guess, because the greens were starting to firm up. The pins were tucked and the wind was kind of swirling sometimes. So it was tough to get all that right and get the ball close to the hole. It was just a really tricky day. These greens are almost always soft, it seems like, every round here every year. But they had them firmer today, and it was hard to get it anywhere here the hole. I had some shots that I thought would end up much closer to the hole than they did and just scooted on past. It was tough to get the ball close enough to the hole to make the putts to shoot the scores we've been shooting. After the par 5s in the first two days, and I also birdied 1 and 2; and I hit good putts on both 1 and 2. I was thinking about that, I sure wanted to get off to a good start. It was nice birdieing No. 4, after not birdieing any of those first three holes, because you sure want to get it in the red for the day before you have to fight back, if you make a bogey or two.

Q. How important was it for you to regain the lead after John had tied and you had a couple holes to go? You didn't get the birdie on the par 5, but you came back on 18.

BOB ESTES: No big deal, really. If I would have been at -- I could have finished the third round at, you know, 16-under, 15-under, 14-, 13-, 12- (under), and still had a chance to win the tournament. I would rather be at 22-under, but it was just a tough day to play. As far as -- really, I mean, you can really say there's three of us tied for the lead right now. One shot is no big deal. It's nothing, really. So basically, you've got three co-leaders, and with 18 holes to go, there can be a big difference between what two guys shoot in any one day. So it's no big deal. But I'm still glad to be leading. I'm the only one now that can go wire-to-wire and win the tournament that way. That's what I did in San Antonio, too.

Q. Is there a number you think it takes to win tomorrow?

BOB ESTES: With somebody like John Daly, and Scott McCarron right there, as well, as long as they can hit and as low as they can go, we can't really predict. We don't know what the course is going to be set up like. My caddie was trying to look at the pins for tomorrow, but I don't know if they are going to be easier, harder or the same, overall. When you have guys that hit it as far as John and Scott do, like John did today, they can shoot 62 or 63 or 64 in a heartbeat, even when the course is playing tough, because they hit it so long and so high. So as the course -- as the fairways firm up, it's better for me. As the greens firm up, it's better for them because they hit their irons so high. I like to keep the ball down and keep it more under control. Did I kind of answer that question? Okay.

Q. Were you all aware of what John Daly was doing at all? Did you keep hearing the roars? Did you know it was John Daly?

BOB ESTES: Yeah, I don't think anybody else was going to be getting any roars like that out there today, except for me, maybe, with a few of my fans out there; they can get a little rowdy sometimes. Maybe they can get a little competition going tomorrow, I guess, with John's people. I think I saw John at 4-under through -- didn't he get it to 4-under through five or six or something like that? And that's exactly the kind of start you want to get on this golf course, because it only gets harder from there. You want to get off to a good start, with the two par 5s, and 1 and 2 have been playing easy; you want to get off to a good start like John did. I think I heard somebody say he got it to 15-under and had gone to 16-under, but I can't worry about what John is doing. John, you never know what John is going to do as far as scores. He might shoot 62 tomorrow or he might shoot over par. You know, my game tends to be a little more consistent. It's nice that I've got the potential now to shoot some lower scores like I did on Thursday and at Colonial. As far as John goes, you know, he's certainly got that potential and might do it again tomorrow. Still, like I've been saying the whole time, I've got to keep trying to make birdies. Today, birdies were hard to come by. You just have to play away from the flag, putt for a 30-footer, 2-putt and move on.

Q. How about playing with him and that gallery tomorrow? It should be a lot of fun.

BOB ESTES: Yeah, it should be a lot of fun. It will be exciting. It's probably the next best thing to playing with Tiger and experiencing that. If you want to be one of the best players in the world, you've got to do that. You've got to deal with it. And if it's in the last group, that's even better. So, you know, that's why I work so hard at my game, and workout as hard as I do. You know, just all of the preparation, to be able to deal with that, and so, I know it has the potential to get really loud. It could be a little chaotic, but I like the way that I'm hitting the ball for the most part, and I like the way that I'm putting. I'm just -- see how it goes.

LEE PATTERSON: Why don't you tell us about your birdies.

BOB ESTES: This will be quick. (Laughter.) No. 4, that was playing into the breeze. I can't remember what the yardage was. It was something like 195 or something like that into the breeze. I hit a 4-iron in the back fringe and made a 20-footer down the hill for birdie. No. 17, I hit driver in the fairway and I hit 5-iron. I thought I had made it for a 2. I don't know if they showed it on television. It looked like it was going to break just by the hole. Hit it by the hole, rolled up there. It went about 15 feet by. Probably one of the longest putts ever made as far as the clock and how long it took to get to the hole, but it finally went in. I think it broke four or five times before it finally broke the way it needed to, to go in.

LEE PATTERSON: Thank you, Bob.

End of FastScripts....

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