Golf Talk Live - Tommy Bolt Transcript Segment 2
BOLT THUNDERS TO OPEN CROWN
SCENIC SOUTHERN HILLS AT TULSA, OKLAHOMA, BATTLEGROUND FOR THE 58TH UNITED STATES GOLF ASSOCIATION OPEN CHAMPIONSHIPS. FROM THE OPENING SHOT IT TAKES A TOLL ON THE CONTENDERS WHO FIND IT THE TOUGHEST COURSE IN YEARS, BUT AT LEAST ONE
MAN IS PLAYING SOLID GOLF FROM THE START, IT'S TOMMY BOLT, WHO'S HAD TO CONQUER HIS TEMPER BEFORE HE COULD CONQUER PAR, APPARENTLY HE HAS SUCCEEDED.
WITH A FINAL ROUND OF 73, TOMMY BOLT WINS THE TITLE. HIS 72 HOLE SCORE OF 283 IS 4 STROKES BETTER THAN SECOND PLACE, PLAYER. KEEPING HIS TEMPER QUIET, BOLT LETS HIS GOLF DO THE THUNDERING FOR HIM. OPEN CHAMPION OF THE UNITED STATES.
DID THEY HAVE THE FINAL ROUND SCORE WRONG THERE, TOMMY?
YEAH, THEY SAID 73, I SHOT 72.
AND, AND WHAT AGE WERE YOU GOING BY THAT PARTICULAR TOURNAMENT? THE HOLLYWOOD AGE, OR THE BIRTH CERTIFICATE AGE?
I, THERE'S, I GUESS, THERE'S A LITTLE STORY ABOUT THAT, PETER. I DON'T KNOW IF YOU'VE HEARD IT OR NOT. DICK METZ, JULIUS BOROS AND, AND MYSELF, WE SHOT, WE SHOT 71'S TO LEAD THE TOURNAMENT.
FIRST ROUND AND THE, THE NEW, I LOOKED IN THE, THE UH, THE TULSA, OR THE TULSA WORLD I THINK IT IS AND THE GUY HAD ME IN THERE AS 49 YEAR OLD, TOMMY BOLT. HE HAD 50 YEAR OLD DICK METZ, 37 YEAR OLD JULIUS BOROS, 49
YEAR OLD TOMMY BOLT AND I CORNERED HIM WHEN HE CAME OUT THERE THE NEXT MORNING AND I SAYS, HEY FELLOW, WHAT DO YOU MEAN BY QUOTING MY AGE AS 49 YEARS OLD, I'M ONLY 39.
TOMMY, HE SAYS, I'M SORRY THAT WAS A TYPOGRAPHICAL ERROR. I SAID TYPOGRAPHICAL ERROR MY FOOT. IT WAS A PERFECT 4 AND A PERFECT 9.
THAT'S A PRETTY GOOD STORY.
IT'S A GREAT STORY, AND OF COURSE, EVEN THE BEST PART ABOUT IT WAS OF COURSE THAT YOU WEREN'T 49, YOU WEREN'T 39, YOU WERE 42.
I WAS 42. REALLY.
NOW, GO AHEAD.
NO YOU GO AHEAD, PETER.
I WAS JUST GOING TO SAY WITH, WITH THE OPEN RETURNING TO SOUTHERN HILLS IN, IN JUNE, ARE YOU PARTICULARLY PLEASED ABOUT THE GREAT BIG FUSS THAT'S BEING MADE ABOUT YOU THIS YEAR?
YES I AM PETER. I'M, I'M ENJOYING IT REALLY, BUT IT'S, I DIDN'T KNOW THIS MUCH MEDIA ATTENTION WOULD WEAR YOU OUT. IT'S KIND OF WEARING ME OUT,
BOY (LAUGHS), BUT I'M ENJOYING IT, VERY MUCH, AND I'VE DONE A LOT OF IT AND IT'S KIND OF LIKE, KIND OF LIKE WINNING THE OPEN AGAIN, ALMOST. IT REALLY IS. I, I'M ENJOYING IT BUT IT'S TIRING ME OUT AND I'VE GOT, I'VE GOT TO DO SOME MORE STUFF WHEN I GET BACK UP THERE.
WELL CONSIDERING WE'VE GOT ANOTHER 5 WEEKS BEFORE THE OPEN BEGINS OR ANOTHER MONTH OR SO. YOU THOUGHT IT WAS A FAIR BUT BRUTAL TEST, DIDN'T YOU, IN 1958 WHEN YOU WON?
WELL I THOUGHT IT WAS A FAIR TEST, PETER. ACTUALLY, I WAS PLAYING PROBABLY BETTER GOLF THAN ANYBODY IN THE WORLD IN THOSE DAYS, IF YOU, I MISSED A FOUR FOOTER, YOU KNOW, IN
DALLAS, TO KEEP FROM TYING, I WOULD HAVE TIED AND, AND BEEN IN THE PLAY OFF WITH SNEAD AND PLAYER AND THOSE, OTHER GUYS. THEN I WAS, THEN I WENT RIGHT TO TULSA AND I PLAYED TWO PRACTICE ROUNDS WITH SAM AND I DID
GOT A LITTLE TEMPO OFF OF HIM, YOU KNOW, AND I CARRIED IT RIGHT ON INTO THE TOURNAMENT AND, BLESS HIS HEART, AND I DON'T, I NEVER DID THANK HIM FOR THAT.
THE COMBINATION OF HOW GOOD YOU WERE PLAYING, YOUR CONFIDENCE ABOUT HOW GOOD YOU WERE PLAYING AND RETURNING HOME TO OKLAHOMA
HAD TO MAKE YOU FEEL AS THE WEEK BEGAN AND THE HEAT WAS OPPRESSIVE AND THE HUMIDITY WAS PARTICULARLY TOUGH THAT THIS WAS LIKE GOING TO HEAVEN FOR YOU THAT WEEK,
WAS IT NOT?
RIGHT DOWN, RIGHT DOWN MY ALLEY, PETER.
RIGHT DOWN MY ALLEY. I, I'LL TELL YOU, I WAS PLAYING SO GOOD, PETER, OF COURSE I'VE TOLD THIS STORY A LOT OF TIMES. I BIRDIED THE FIRST HOLE TO HOLE
A 15 FOOTER FOR A THREE AND I TURNED AROUND AND LOOKED TOWARDS THE CLUBHOUSE AND I SAYS I WONDER WHO'S GOING TO FINISH SECOND.
NOW HE WAS MAD AT YOU ABOUT THAT, RIGHT? BECAUSE HE SAID YOU HAD SERENITY THAT WEEK BECAUSE YOU HAD RUN INTO BISHOP FULTON SHEEN WHO TALKED TO YOU A LITTLE BIT ABOUT STAYING CALM,
DID HE NOT?
WHAT DID HE SAY?
WELL IT WAS, HE, I READ THE, I WAS READING IN THOSE DAYS, I WAS READING THE, THE SERENITY PRAYER. GOD GRANT ME THE POWER TO, TO ACCEPT THE THINGS I CAN NOT CHANGE, TO CHANGE
THE THINGS I CAN, AND THE WISDOM TO
KNOW THE DIFFERENCE, AND IF YOU LIVE BY THAT YOU'D BE AMAZED HOW, HOW WELL YOU'LL FEEL ALL DAY, PETER.
NOW A COUPLE OPENS LATER, BY THE TIME YOU WERE TOSSING THAT CLUB AT THE CART
YOU'D FORGOTTEN THAT SERENITY THING?
YEAH, I QUIT READING THAT.
I'D QUIT READING IT BY THEN, PETER.
WHO WAS THE FAVORITE THAT WEEK, WERE YOU THE FAVORITE?
I DON'T THINK SO. NO I WASN'T IN, IN TULSA. I WASN'T THE FAVORITE. I THINK HOGAN WOULD PROBABLY HAVE BEEN THE FAVORITE. HE WAS PLAYING, THAT
WAS 1958 AND ALL, IT WOULD HAVE BEEN THE (UNINTELLIGIBLE), WOULD HAVE BEEN PALMER PROBABLY, PALMER OR ONE OF THOSE GUYS.
WELL HE HAD JUST WON HIS FIRST MASTERS.
HE WON THE MASTERS, YEAH, AND, NO, I, I, I DON'T KNOW IF I WAS ACTUALLY THE FAVORITE OR NOT, BUT A COUP... THREE WEEKS BEFORE THAT I WON AT COLONIAL TOO,
BEFORE THE OPEN, AND THAT GOLF COURSE'S KIND OF SIMILAR TO SOUTHERN HILLS BECAUSE YOU HAD TO WALK SINGLE FILE DOWN THOSE FAIRWAYS AND THAT'S A GOOD DRIVING COURSE, BELIEVE ME IT IS AND TIGER, TIGER'S GOING TO HAVE TO WORK ON HIS
DRIVER IF HE'S GOING TO WIN THAT TOURNAMENT... BECAUSE HE'S NOT DRIVING THAT BALL AS WELL AS HE SHOULD. HE MISSES A LOT OF FAIRWAYS. HOGAN NEVER MISSED MANY FAIRWAYS.
PERRY MAXWELL WAS INVOLVED IN BOTH OF THOSE COURSES WASN'T HE?
YES HE WAS.
WASN'T HE? HE DID SOME WORK ON THE EARLY HOLES AT COLONIAL
YES HE DID
BASICALLY RESPONSIBLE FOR SOUTHERN HILLS AND A NUMBER OF THE CONTOURED GREENS AT AUGUSTA NATIONAL.
I THINK PEOPLE AREN'T AWARE OF.
HE WAS A, HE WAS A GREAT ARCHITECT. HE, HE, HE DESIGNED SOME GREAT COURSES, PETER.
WHEN WE COME BACK LET'S KEEP TALKING ABOUT THE OPEN FOR A FEW MORE MINUTES
AS WE LEAVE, I WANTED TO SHOW YOU A PLAQUE OF WHICH 1958 ARE BEING MADE, NOW ISN'T IT INTERESTING THAT YOU GOT MORE GREY HAIR IN 1958 THAN YOU DID IN 1971 IN A SHOT WE'LL SEE YOU LATER? AND IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO ORDER THE
PLAQUE 800-465-3609 OR RAZORGOLF.COM AND LATER IN THE SHOW WE'LL SEE TOMMY'S NEW GOLF CLUBS MADE BY RAZOR GOLF. SO WHY WAS THE HAIR DARKER LATER?
PETER, I'D BEEN GETTING SOME OF THAT COLOR BACK.
TILL IT RAINED THAT DAY AND IT WENT ALL OVER YOUR FACE, RIGHT?
YEAH AND I GOT IT IN THE, GOT CAUGHT IN THE RAIN AND IT CAME DOWN ON MY FACE AND I SAID THAT'S ENOUGH OF THAT.
THAT'S THE END OF THAT. WE'LL BE RIGHT BACK.
The missing link: Advice from successful tour pros
Today’s topic is significant in that it underscores the direction golf is headed, a direction that has me a little concerned.
Now, more than ever, it has become the norm for PGA Tour players to put together a team to assist in all aspects of their career. These teams can typically include the player’s swing coach, mental coach, manager, workout specialist, dietician, physical therapist, short-game guru, doctor, accountant, nanny and wife. Though it often concerns me the player may be missing out when others are making decisions for them, that is not the topic.
I want to talk about what most players seem to be inexplicably leaving off their teams.
One of the things that separates great players from the rest of the pack – other than talent – is the great player’s ability to routinely stay comfortable and play with focus and clarity in all situations. Though innate to many, this skill is trainable and can be learned. Don’t get too excited, the details of such a plan are too long and more suited for a book than the short confines of this article.
So, if that aspect of the game is so important, where is the representative on the player’s team who has stood on the 18th tee with everything on the line? Where is the representative on the team who has experienced, over and over, what the player will be experiencing? In other words, where is the successful former tour player on the team?
You look to tennis and many players have such a person on their team. These teacher/mentors include the likes of Boris Becker, Ivan Lendl, Jimmy Connors and Brad Gilbert. Why is it not the norm in golf?
Sure, a few players have sought out the advice of Jack Nicklaus, but he’s not part of a team. The teaching ranks also include some former players like Butch Harmon and a few others. But how many teams include a player who has contended in a major, let alone won one or more?
I’m not here to argue the value and knowledge of all the other coaches who make up a player’s team. But how can the value of a successful tour professional be overlooked? If I’m going to ask someone what I should do in various situations on the course, I would prefer to include the experienced knowledge of players who have been there themselves.
This leads me to the second part of today’s message. Is there a need for the professional players to mix with professional teachers to deliver the best and most comprehensive teaching philosophy to average players? I feel there is.
Most lessons are concerned with changing the student’s swing. Often, this is done with little regard for how it feels to the student because the teacher believes the information is correct and more important than the “feels” of the student. “Stick with it until it’s comfortable” is often the message. This directive methodology was put on Twitter for public consumption a short time back:
Once we give 'em a lesson, we are faced with:— Trackman Maestro (@TrackmanMaestro) January 16, 2018
A. Will they do what we asked them to do
B. Can they do what we asked them to do
C. Will they put in the practice time
D. The fact that golf is a hard game
We face multiple barriers as golf instructors.
On the other hand, the professional player is an expert at making a score and understands the intangible side of the game. The intangible side says: “Mechanics cannot stand alone in making a good player.” The intangible side understands “people feel things differently”; ask Jim Furyk to swing like Dustin Johnson, or vice versa. This means something that looks good to us may not feel right to someone else.
The intangible side lets us know that mechanics and feels must walk together in order for the player to succeed. From Ben Hogan’s book:
“What I have learned I have learned by laborious trial and error, watching a good player do something that looked right to me, stumbling across something that felt right to me, experimenting with that something to see if it helped or hindered, adopting it if it helped, refining it sometimes, discarding it if it didn’t help, sometimes discarding it later if it proved undependable in competition, experimenting continually with new ideas and old ideas and all manner of variations until I arrived at a set of fundamentals that appeared to me to be right because they accomplished a very definite purpose, a set of fundamentals which proved to me they were right because they stood up and produced under all kinds of pressure.”
Hogan beautifully described the learning process that could develop the swings of great players like DJ, Furyk, Lee Trevino, Jordan Spieth, Nicklaus, etc.
Bob Toski is still teaching. Steve Elkington is helping to bring us the insight of Jackie Burke. Hal Sutton has a beautiful teaching facility outside of Houston. And so on. Just like mechanics and feels, it’s not either-or – the best message comes from both teachers and players.
Lately, it seems the scale has swung more to one side; let us not forget the value of insights brought to us by the players who have best mastered the game.
Woods, Rahm, Rickie, J-Day headline Torrey field
Tiger Woods is set to make his 2018 debut.
Woods is still part of the final field list for next week’s Farmers Insurance Open, the headliner of a tournament that includes defending champion Jon Rahm, Hideki Matsuyama, Justin Rose, Rickie Fowler, Phil Mickelson and Jason Day.
In all, 12 of the top 26 players in the world are teeing it up at Torrey Pines.
Though Woods has won eight times at Torrey Pines, he hasn’t broken 71 in his past seven rounds there and hasn’t played all four rounds since 2013, when he won. Last year he missed the cut after rounds of 76-72, then lasted just one round in Dubai before he withdrew with back spasms.
After a fourth back surgery, Woods didn’t return to competition until last month’s Hero World Challenge, where he tied for ninth.
Woods has committed to play both the Farmers Insurance Open and next month's Genesis Open at Riviera, which benefits his foundation.
Even on 'off' day, Rahm shoots 67 at CareerBuilder
Jon Rahm didn’t strike the ball as purely Friday as he did during his opening round at the CareerBuilder Challenge.
He still managed a 5-under 67 that put him just one shot off the lead heading into the weekend.
“I expected myself to go to the range (this morning) and keep flushing everything like I did yesterday,” said Rahm, who shot a career-low 62 at La Quinta on Thursday. “Everything was just a little bit off. It was just one of those days.”
After going bogey-free on Thursday, Rahm mixed four birdies and two bogeys over his opening six holes. He managed to settle down around the turn, then made two birdies on his final three holes to move within one shot of Andrew Landry (65).
Rahm has missed only five greens through two rounds and sits at 15-under 129.
The 23-year-old Spaniard won in Dubai to end the year and opened 2018 with a runner-up finish at the Sentry Tournament of Champions. He needs a top-6 finish or better this week to supplant Jordan Spieth as the No. 2 player in the world.
Landry stays hot, leads desert shootout at CareerBuilder
LA QUINTA, Calif. – Andrew Landry topped the crowded CareerBuilder Challenge leaderboard after another low-scoring day in the sunny Coachella Valley.
Landry shot a 7-under 65 on Thursday on PGA West's Jack Nicklaus Tournament Course to reach 16 under. He opened with a 63 on Thursday at La Quinta Country Club.
''Wind was down again,'' Landry said. ''It's like a dome out here.''
Jon Rahm, the first-round leader after a 62 at La Quinta, was a stroke back. He had two early bogeys in a 67 on the Nicklaus layout.
''It's tough to come back because I feel like I expected myself to go to the range and keep just flushing everything like I did yesterday,'' Rahm said. ''Everything was just a little bit off.''
Jason Kokrak was 14 under after a 67 at Nicklaus. Two-time major champion Zach Johnson was 13 under along with Michael Kim and Martin Piller. Johnson had a 64 at Nicklaus.
Landry, Rahm, Kokrak and Johnson will finish the rotation Saturday at PGA West's Stadium Course, also the site of the final round.
''You need to hit it a lot more accurate off the tee because being in the fairway is a lot more important,'' Rahm said about the Pete Dye-designed Stadium Course, a layout the former Arizona State player likened to the Dye-designed Karsten course on the school's campus. ''With the small greens, you have water in play. You need to be more precise. Clearly the hardest golf course.''
Landry pointed to the Saturday forecast.
''I think the wind's supposed to be up like 10 to 20 mph or something, so I know that golf course can get a little mean,'' Landry said. ''Especially, those last three or four holes.''
The 30-year-old former Arkansas player had five birdies in a six-hole stretch on the back nine. After winning his second Web.com Tour title last year, he had two top-10 finishes in October and November at the start the PGA Tour season.
''We're in a good spot right now,'' Landry said. ''I played two good rounds of golf, bogey-free both times, and it's just nice to be able to hit a lot of good quality shots and get rewarded when you're making good putts.''
Rahm had four birdies and the two bogeys on his first six holes. He short-sided himself in the left bunker on the par-3 12th for his first bogey of the week and three-putted the par-4 14th – pulling a 3-footer and loudly asking ''What?'' – to drop another stroke.
''A couple of those bad swings cost me,'' Rahm said.
The top-ranked player in the field at No. 3 in the world, Rahm made his first par of the day on the par-4 16th and followed with five more before birdieing the par-5 fourth. The 23-year-old Spaniard also birdied the par-5 seventh and par-3 eighth.
''I had close birdie putts over the last four holes and made two of them, so I think that kind of clicked,'' said Rahm, set to defend his title next week at Torrey Pines.
He has played the par 5s in 9 under with an eagle and seven birdies.
Johnson has taken a relaxed approach to the week, cutting his practice to two nine-hole rounds on the Stadium Course.
''I'm not saying that's why I'm playing well, but I took it really chill and the golf courses haven't changed,'' Johnson said. ''La Quinta's still really pure, right out in front of you, as is the Nicklaus.''
Playing partner Phil Mickelson followed his opening 70 at La Quinta with a 68 at Nicklaus to get to 6 under. The 47-year-old Hall of Famer is playing his first tournament of since late October.
''The scores obviously aren't what I want, but it's pretty close and I feel good about my game,'' Mickelson said. ''I feel like this is a great place to start the year and build a foundation for my game. It's easy to identify the strengths and weaknesses. My iron play has been poor relative to the standards that I have. My driving has been above average.''
Charlie Reiter, the Palm Desert High School senior playing on a sponsor exemption, had a 70 at Nicklaus to match Mickelson at 6 under. The Southern California recruit is playing his first PGA Tour event. He tied for 65th in the Australian Open in November in his first start in a professional tournament.