June 4, 2003
Note: The news conference was moderated by Julius Mason, Director of Public Relations and Media Relations for the PGA of America.
JULIUS MASON: Dana Quigley, ladies and gentlemen, joining us at the 64th Senior PGA Championship. Dana playing in his seventh Senior PGA Championship. Welcome to Aronimink. How about some opening thoughts on this beautiful day.
DANA QUIGLEY: I played the golf course yesterday for the first time. Yesterday I was convinced it's the longest golf course I have ever played. For a tournament setting it is the longest course, by far, I think that I have ever played. Now with all this rain last night and today, I guess it can get longer. It's going to be a monster for us, I am sure. Depending on where the PGA sets the tee markers, I mean, if they are where we played yesterday kind of near the back most of them, it is all the test that we're ever going to need for sure.
Q. Longest ever, I mean, as a senior or any --
DANA QUIGLEY: Longest, I think -- I have played in some U.S. Opens. I played in three Opens and seven PGA Championships when I was younger, and I can't ever remember playing, hitting 3- and 4- and 5-irons to every single hole, which we did here yesterday. I talked to my nephew, Brett (Quigley, a PGA Tour player), this morning on the phone this morning and told him that and he said, come on, now, we played lots of courses but most of the courses with 7,100 yards, all roll out, you get some run. This is all-carry every shot. Seems like every green on this golf course has got a little elevation to it. Hitting up to it you don't get any bounce forward with the irons, you don't get anything with the driver. I mean, and the rough is going to be just unbearable, believe me. It's really hard now. If the sun ever comes out and they don't mow it, it's going to be unbelievable.
Q. What is the talk in the locker room among the other players, essentially the same thing?
DANA QUIGLEY: I really -- I don't like to talk a lot about it with the players. I think we -- everyone in our group yesterday certainly thought it was the longest course. I know (Allen) Doyle hits it kind of like I do and he thinks it's really long. We both -- I think it is a great golf course, don't get us wrong. It is a fantastic challenge for all of us, but the longer hitter really has a big edge here, I think.
Q. Want to take a guess at a winning score?
DANA QUIGLEY: Sure. I don't know what the forecast -- anymore rain?
Q. Supposed to get nice tomorrow.
DANA QUIGLEY: One day? Weekend rain again?
Q. Sunshine all weekend.
DANA QUIGLEY: I think 4 to 7 (under par) would win this thing in my opinion. I cannot see it going very low. If you shot four 70s, I think that would win going away, but I don't think I have ever been right about that, so don't go by me.
Q. What holes out there in particular stand out in your mind?
DANA QUIGLEY: Starting with one and going through 18 is pretty good. (Laughs). Every hole is really hard because you have to drive it in the fairway starting off. There's no fooling at all. I don't remember the course, per se, hole-by-hole. 1 looks like a great golf hole. I hit driver like 5-iron to it and the pin was on the front. Every one of these greens is real deep and you probably got another club and a half from the front to the back or two clubs, so again, depending on where they put the flag sticks, it could play -- you could hit 2-wood. You are going to see a lot of guys hitting woods into some of these par 4s. They are monsters. The par 3s are great. We hit a wood into one or two of them yesterday. It's a giant golf course by far. I think the longest we have played.
Q. This stage of your career does it still mean as much to try to get a major victory?
DANA QUIGLEY: Probably means more at this stage. I have been close a bunch of times. I have had a lot of success out here. I think the first question most people ask me is when are you going to win a major. If you interviewed me six years ago and you told me someone asked me that question, I'd a laughed at you. I can't believe they are asking me when am I going to win a major. I don't feel like I have a major golf game. I don't hit the irons high enough, I don't think, for a major golf course, but a lot of this rain is going to soften these things so maybe I might do all right this week. But I think you have got to look at the majors, guys like (Tom) Watson, and Hale (Irwin), of course, every week we look at Hale. But Watson, especially will be probably good here. He hits it nice and high and he's got great control, you know, there's -- I just -- the major players are probably going to play well here again, I imagine. I think that's part of the makeup of how these courses are picked. They know the great players are going to play well on them. And I'd love to win one, don't get me wrong. I am pointing to win one. I'd love to try, but I probably might have a better shot at the British Senior than I do at this PGA.
Q. Would you like us to officially put the onus on you this week of being best player, senior player not to have won a major?
DANA QUIGLEY: Who me? You won't even mention that. I am sure there are other great players that haven't won a major out here. I'd love to have that tag. That means you think I am a great player, but I am certainly not in that category.
Q. Coming from your background having been a club pro, at this stage you have been out here six years, you have had a lot of success. What separates you now? Why do you have the mindset of "I am not the guy to win a major" when you have done very well?
DANA QUIGLEY: Well, I think that was my mindset in every major I have gone to. Everyone I go to when I play practice rounds, I say, man, this is really too hard for me. I always say that. When the flag goes up I change into a whole different mentality, not consciously, but when I get out on that first tee tomorrow I know I am going to be trying to win the golf tournament. But when I like sit here and talk about it like the day before or something, I don't see myself as a contender. But I have had -- I am able to suck it up and somehow change into a different mentality, I think, by the time I get to the 1st tee. I don't know why that happens, you know, again, it's not something I wait 'til Thursday to really start thinking about it. But it seems to happen a lot.
Q. Any theory from you on why there have been so many different winners this year?
DANA QUIGLEY: Yeah, well, my theory has been ever since the start is we have such a deep field of players now, a deep -- the pool is -- the talent pool is so -- we got Craig Stadler again, another addition this week, we had D.A. Weibring last week, I mean, it's just going to go on and on and these are all Tour players that never stopped playing. 10 years ago or whatever how many years ago, most of the guys stopped between 35 and 50 or 40 and 50, and then didn't start playing again 'til they came out here. Now they are just playing right through because they know they got to stay competitive to play out here. We have such a tremendous -- the gap is placed between Hale and Gil (Morgan), and the top players and the rest of the field. I think the other players, myself personally, I don't feel like when I am going into a tournament that second place is going to be all right. I go to win now and it's a whole different change in my mentality and I know the guys coming out here are not going to be awed or intimidated or whatever by the guys that used to win five to seven times out here. I think the talent pool is so much deeper and there's just a lot of guys that can win. Jimmy Ahern last week, I don't think anyone could have beaten him. He was on fire from the first hole on: We have 81 players that can do that now as opposed to maybe 15 or 20.
Q. Have you had a chance to talk to Craig Stadler yet?
DANA QUIGLEY: I haven't seen him this week. I see him once a year at the CVS Golf Classic -- (Brad) Faxon and (Billy) Andrade run a tournament on Rhode Island on June 22 this year, a team event, I always talk with him about it and he always laughs it off. He's going to be a major force in my opinion. I think he's one of the top players that came out here. That's going -- I think he should run it.
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