Golf Talk Live - Bernard Gallacher Transcript Segment 1

By Golf Channel DigitalFebruary 19, 2001, 5:00 pm
TEASE
SCOTLAND'S BERNARD GALLACHER WON 15 EUROPEAN TOUR EVENTS. WAS AN 8 TIME RYDER CUP PLAYER AND 3 TIME RYDER CUP CAPTAIN. HE CARVED OUT HIS SUCCESS AS A PLAYER IN CANTON WHILE STILL
ESSENTIALLY A FAMILY MAN AND CLUB PRO AT WENTWORTH GOLF CLUB OUTSIDE LONDON. MEET THE BALANCED BERNARD GALLACHER, NOW ON GOLF TALK LIVE.
(MUSIC)
IN 1968 WHEN BERNARD WAS 20, HE WAS ROOKIE OF THE YEAR ON THE EUROPEAN TOUR. HE WON THE ORDER OF MERIT AND THE VARDON TROPHY IN 1969 AND MADE HIS FIRST RYDER CUP TEAM AS A PLAYER.
THAT WAS THE YEAR JACK NICKLAUS CONCEDED TONY JACKLIN'S MISABLE PUTT ON THE FINAL HOLE WHICH ENSURED A TIE TO THE MATCHES, AND RETENTION OF THE CUP FOR THE AMERICANS. IT WAS ALSO A YEAR THAT BERNARD GALLACHER DEFEATED LEE TREVINO IN THEIR SINGLES MATCH. HE ALWAYS HAD A SENSE OF
BALANCE, WANTED TO BE NEAR HIS FAMILY, THOUGHT OF HIMSELF AS A CLUB PRO WHO PLAYED 15 EVENTS A SEASON. HIS CAREER AS A PLAYER WAS MARKED BY CONSISTENCY AND A BRILLIANT SHORT GAME. BERNARD REPRESENTED SCOTLAND 5 TIMES IN THE
WORLD CUP. WON THE DUNLAP MASTERS TWICE AND THE SPANISH AND FRENCH OPENS AS A PART TIME PLAYER. BERNARD BECAME EUROPEAN RYDER CUP CAPTAIN TONY JACKLIN'S ASSISTANT IN THE MID 80'S AND
WHEN TONY STEPPED ASIDE, BERNARD BECAME CAPTAIN IN 1991 AND STAYED AS CAPTAIN UNTIL HIS TEAM WON BRILLIANTLY. THE UNITED STATES AT OAK HILL IN 1995. AND HE DID THESE THINGS WHILE RAISING THREE CHILDREN AND TEACHING BAD GOLFERS TO BE BETTER AT THE WENTWORTH CLUB. HE
HAS BEEN AWARDED THE ORDER OF THE BRITISH EMPIRE, HAS A STREET NAMED AFTER HIM NEAR HIS BIRTHPLACE IN SCOTLAND, AND A LIFE SIZE STATUE WAS ERECTED IN HIS HONOR AT THE BURMA ROAD COURSE AT WENTWORTH. A REMINDER THAT
YOU CAN STILL MAKE YOUR MARK WHILE STILL MAKING A SIGNIFICANT CONTRIBUTION.
PETER KESSLER
WELCOME TO GOLF TALK LIVE, I'M PETER KESSLER. GREAT PLEASURE TO INTRODUCE YOU TO ONE OF SCOTLAND'S GIFTS TO GOLF, BERNARD GALLACHER. PLEASURE TO HAVE YOU HERE, SIR.
BERNARD GALLACHER
THANKS, NICE TO BE HERE.
PETER KESSLER
HAPPY BELATED BIRTHDAY TO YOU.
BERNARD GALLACHER
YEAH, THANKS VERY MUCH.
PETER KESSLER
COMING FROM THE HOME OF SCOTLAND, DID THEY LET YOU WALK BEFORE YOU ACTUALLY HAD A CLUB IN YOUR HAND?
BERNARD GALLACHER
OH YEAH, YEAH. EVERYONE IN SCOTLAND PLAYS GOLF. EVERY VILLAGE HAS GOT A GOLF COURSE AND WE ALL LIKE PLAYING GOLF IT'S, WE'RE GOOD AT, WE'RE BETTER AT SOCCER THAN GOLF BUT WE ALL LIKE TO PLAY GOLF.
PETER KESSLER
WHAT WERE YOU BETTER AT, SOCCER OR GOLF?
BERNARD GALLACHER
UM... WELL I CERTAINLY PLAYED A LOT OF FOOTBALL. WE CALL IT FOOTBALL, IN SCOTLAND AND UH YOU KNOW 12 YEAR OLD RIGHT THROUGH TO OUR 16. IT WAS, FOOTBALL IN THE WINTER, GOLF IN THE SUMMER AND BY THE TIME I GOT TO 16
I WAS A BIT BETTER AT GOLF SO I TURNED MY ATTENTION MORE TO GOLF.
PETER KESSLER
WHEN DID YOU FIRST START TO PLAY?
BERNARD GALLACHER
I PLAYED GOLF WHEN I WAS ABOUT 9 YEAR OLD. I USED TO CADDIE FOR MY UNCLE ON THE GOLF COURSE AT BATHGATE WHICH IS QUITE OUTSIDE EDINBOROUGH AND IN BETWEEN CADDYING I WOULD HIT A FEW BALLS AND IT WAS JUST HOW I STARTED.
PETER KESSLER
WHAT KIND OF PLAYER WAS YOUR DAD?
BERNARD GALLACHER
MY DAD WAS ABOUT A 14 HANDICAP WHEN HE WAS AT HIS BEST. HE PEAKED AT 14.
PETER KESSLER
(LAUGHS)
BERNARD GALLACHER
AND THEN HE WENT BACK DOWN TO BE AN 18 HANDICAP AND I THINK HE WAS QUITE HAPPY BEING AN 18 HANDICAP. THERE'S A LOT OF PEOPLE IN THIS LIFE WHO ARE QUITE HAPPY BEING 18 HANDICAPPERS AND YOU KNOW, IT'S JUST NICE TO HAVE A HANDICAP HE'S QUITE COMFORTABLE WITH (LAUGHS).

PETER KESSLER
WHO WERE YOUR GOLF HEROES WHEN YOU WERE GROWING UP?
BERNARD GALLACHER
GARY PLAYER, ARNOLD PALMER... PROBABLY ERIC BROWN... PEOPLE IN AMERICA MAYBE HAVEN'T HEARD MUCH OF ERIC BROWN BUT HE BEAT, HE WAS A RYDER CUP CAPTAIN AS WELL.
PETER KESSLER
ERIC OF COURSE BEAT TOMMY BOLT IN SINGLES IN THE '57 RYDER CUP.
BERNARD GALLACHER
YEAH
PETER KESSLER
AND THEN AFTERWARDS TOMMY SAID I CAN'T SAY I ENJOYED THE MATCH VERY MUCH AND WHAT DID ERIC SAY TO HIM?
BERNARD GALLACHER
HE SAID WELL I THINK YOU'RE NOT SUPPOSED TO ENJOY THE MATCH VERY MUCH AND YOU WERE BEATEN. YEAH.
I REMEMBER ASKING ERIC BROWN WHAT WAS THE BEST SHOT HE EVER SAW IN GOLF AND HE SAID, QUICK AS A FLASH, ERIC SAID THE BEST SHOT I EVER SAW WAS TOMMY BOLT'S SECOND SHOT IN THE RYDER CUP IN, IN 1957 AT LINDRICK. HE SAID HE HIT THIS
TOWERING 4 IRON SHOT. IT WAS FADING INTO THE FLAG OVER THE LEFT HAND TRAP. IT DIDN'T QUITE MAKE IT OVER THE TRAP AND IT PLUGGED RIGHT UNDERNEATH THE BUNKER, UNPLAYABLE, HE SAID. THAT WAS THE BEST SHOT I EVER SAW IN GOLF. THAT REALLY WAS ERIC BROWN FOR YOU.
PETER KESSLER
IS THAT WHAT YOU ALWAYS WANTED TO DO? PLAY GOLF? OR WAS THERE SOME OTHER DREAM THAT YOU HAD WHEN YOU WERE YOUNGER?
BERNARD GALLACHER
WHEN I WAS AT SCHOOL I THOUGH I MIGHT BE A DENTIST. I WAS THINKING ABOUT DENTISTRY, BUT, THE STUDYING TO BE A DENTIST WAS GOING TO INTERRUPT MY GOLF AND SO, I TURNED PRO WHEN I WAS 17 AND UH THAT WAS QUITE YOUNG. LOOKING BACK I DON'T
KNOW WHAT, HOW I HAD THE CONFIDENCE TO TURN PRO WHEN I WAS 17. BUT I TURNED PRO AT 17 AND I WANTED TO PLAY A FEW YEARS PLAYING IN TOURNAMENTS AND THEN TURN MY ATTENTION TO BEING A CLUB PRO BECAUSE I NEVER AT ANY MOMENT WHEN
I TURNED PRO THOUGHT YOU COULD ACTUALLY MAKE A LIVING OR, AS A CLUB, AS A TOURING PRO. WE DIDN'T REALLY HAVE THAT MANY TOURNAMENTS, ONLY 15, 12 TOURNAMENTS A YEAR MAYBE, AND THEY ONLY LASTED APRIL TILL
SEPTEMBER. I MEAN WHO WOULD THINK TODAY IN EUROPE THAT WE'RE PLAYING FOR NEARLY 40 MILLION POUNDS. 35 NEARLY 40 TOURNAMENTS A YEAR. I MEAN IT WAS UNBELIEVABLE THAT YOU, YOU, YOU
COULDN'T THINK THIS WOULD EVER, ENVISAGE THIS WOULD EVER HAPPEN.
SO I WANTED TO PLAY A LITTLE BIT TOURNAMENT GOLF AND THEN BECOME A CLUB PRO. THAT'S WHAT I WANTED TO BE.
PETER KESSLER
WAS THERE NEVER A DREAM TO BE THE BEST PLAYER IN THE WORLD?
BERNARD GALLACHER
UM, WELL, I MEAN, LIKE EVERY ONE ELSE YOU THOUGHT ABOUT WINNING THE BRITISH OPEN. YOU WANT TO WIN THE BRITISH OPEN OR PLAY IN THE RYDER CUP, AND THAT, THAT'S REALLY WHAT YOU, YOU DID, YOU
KNOW YOU PLAYED WHEN YOU WERE A YOUNGSTER AND YOU PRETENDED ON THE LAST GREEN THAT THIS WAS A PUTT TO WIN THE BRITISH OPEN. YOU TRIED TO BUILD UP WITH PRESSURE AND SEE HOW YOU COULD HANDLE IT, SO, WE, WE NEVER, WE NEVER
THOUGHT, YOU KNOW TRAVELING IN THOSE DAYS WAS VERY DIFFICULT. WE NEVER THOUGHT ABOUT TRAVELING TO AMERICA TO PLAY OR... I MEAN, WE HAD VERY MODEST AMBITIONS. IT WAS REALLY ABOUT PLAYING IN BRITAIN, REALLY.
PETER KESSLER
DO YOU FEEL LIKE THE GAME CAME EASILY TO YOU?
BERNARD GALLACHER
NO, THE GAME WAS VERY DIFFICULT TO ME. IT ALWAYS HAS BEEN AND IT'S MAINLY BECAUSE I STARTED, WE DIDN'T HAVE A PROFESSIONAL AT BATHGATE, MY OWN GOLF CLUB AND I HAD TO COPY ALL THE BEST PLAYERS IN THE CLUB. THE SWING I HAD WAS A COPIED SWING FROM THE BEST
PLAYER IN THE CLUB AND I STARTED PLAYING GOLF WITH A VERY BAD GRIP, A VERY STRONG GRIP AND BECAUSE YOU START WITH A STRONG GRIP, YOU START WITH A CLOSED CLUBFACE AT THE TOP AND YOU'RE FIGHTING A HOOK, AND BECAUSE I WAS FIGHTING A HOOK, I, I COULDN'T PLAY A DRIVER, I HAD TO PLAY A TWO WOOD, BUT I
DIDN'T KNOW WHY, AND I DIDN'T REALLY HAVE THIS ADVISE OR THIS KNOWLEDGE THAT I REALLY WANTED AND THAT'S WHY IT'S SO IMPORTANT TODAY TO, IF YOU'RE GOING TO, IF YOU'VE GOT CHILDREN, SMALL KIDS TO START, START GOLF WITH A PROPER GOLF LESSON. THEY DON'T NEED MASSES OF
LESSONS BUT THEY NEED A PRO TO SHOW THEM HOW TO STAND TO THE BALL, HOW TO GRIP THE CLUB PROPERLY AND THEN LET THEM GO AND PRACTICE. GIVE THEM THE FREEDOM TO HIT BALLS, BUT I, I DIDN'T REALLY HAVE THAT, THAT, THAT ADVISE
AT THE START AND IT WAS, I FOUND GOLF, I'VE ALWAYS FOUND GOLF QUITE DIFFICULT. I HAD TO PRACTICE A LOT, WORK IT OUT FOR MYSELF AND I DIDN'T HAVE MY FIRST GOLF LESSON TILL I WAS ABOUT 16 YEAR OLD, AND YOU KNOW I TURNED PRO WHEN I WAS 17, SO
PETER KESSLER
YOU'RE A QUICK LEARNER THEN.
BERNARD GALLACHER
WELL YES, BUT, I'VE, I'VE HAD TO PRACTICE AND I'VE HAD TO SEEK ADVISE FROM A LOT OF PEOPLE, YOU KNOW, OVER THE YEARS.
PETER KESSLER
WERE YOU THE BEST TEENAGE PLAYER THAT YOU KNEW?
BERNARD GALLACHER
THAT I KNEW. I WAS THE BEST PLAYER AT THE CLUB, EVENTUALLY, AT MY OWN GOLF CLUB, BUT WE HAD A LOT OF GOOD PLAYERS AND I THINK THAT'S WHAT INSPIRED ME, TRYING TO, TO BEAT THE PLAYERS MY AGE, MY PEERS.
PETER KESSLER
WHEN YOU JUST MENTIONED THAT THERE WASN'T MUCH MONEY I THOUGHT OF YOUR FIRST GREAT YEAR IN 1969 WHERE YOU WON A COUPLE OF TOURNAMENTS IN AFRICA AND A COUPLE OF TOURNAMENTS IN GREAT BRITAIN, AND OF COURSE FOR THE WHOLE YEAR, IN THIS GREAT YEAR WHEN YOU'RE
TWENTY YEARS OLD AND LEADING THE ORDER OF MERIT AND WINNING THE HARRY VARDON TROPHY, YOU WON LIKE 5000 POUNDS, WHICH IS ABOUT
BERNARD GALLACHER
WELL IT WAS ABOUT 7000 POUNDS
PETER KESSLER
7000 FOR THE YEAR?
BERNARD GALLACHER
YEAH
PETER KESSLER
I DIDN'T REALIZE
BERNARD GALLACHER
YEAH
PETER KESSLER
THAT OTHER COUPLE, BUT THAT'S 14, 15 THOUSAND DOLLARS AT
BERNARD GALLACHER
YEAH
PETER KESSLER
THE TIME IN AMERICAN DOLLARS
BERNARD GALLACHER
WELL... IT WAS A LOT OF MONEY TOO, AND I BOUGHT A HOUSE WITH THAT MONEY. IT WAS THE FIRST THING I DID. I BOUGHT MYSELF A HOUSE, OR I BOUGHT MY PARENTS A HOUSE. SO, THAT'S HOW MONEY, HOW THE VALUE OF MONEY... DOESN'T SOUND MUCH TODAY BUT YOU KNOW, WE DIDN'T REALLY
PLAY, I DIDN'T REALLY COME IN, ALTHOUGH I WANTED TO MAKE A LIVING FROM GOLF I WAS MORE INTERESTED IN TOURNAMENTS. I WANTED TO, I WAS JUST SO PLEASED TO PLAY AND QUALIFY FOR THE EVENTS AND WIN A
TOURNAMENT AND FINISH SECOND IN A TOURNAMENT. THAT'S REALLY AND, SOMEBODY GAVE YOU MONEY AT THE END AND THAT WAS GREAT (LAUGHS). GOT MONEY AT THE END OF IT TOO.
PETER KESSLER
LET'S TALK A LITTLE BIT ABOUT 1969 WHEN WE COME BACK. DON'T GO AWAY.
(MUSIC)
(BREAK)
 
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