Jason Day: “I’ve never played anything like this”

By |  June 16, 2015 0 Comments

I caught up with two players today, Jason Day and Graeme McDowell, and asked them their thoughts on the course.

Here they are, in their entirety:

Jason Day

“(The course) felt pretty good. The morning rounds are a lot different compared to the afternoon rounds. The green firmness and the speeds of the greens are a lot slower during the mornings, but I think the course is playing pretty well.

Jason Day takes a rip on Monday morning at the U.S. Open.

Jason Day takes a rip on Monday morning at the U.S. Open.

…It’s just tough to tell because this is the first time we’ve had it here, and I don’t know where they’re going to put the pin positions and stuff like that.

I think the greens are OK. It’s something you have to watch, where you place yourself on the greens — it’s really hard to stop the ball, especially with the clubs you’re coming in with. But, position is obviously key. The fairways are more forgiving than you think, because off the tee it looks much tighter, but when you get down to the fairways it’s actually quite wide. It’s obviously a good second-shot golf course, and from there, you have to make sure the putter is rolling.

I’ve never played anything like this. This is quite different compared to what we usually play with U.S. Opens… but it is what it is, you have to go with it and control everything — all the attitude, emotion and stress levels and stuff like that.

This is something I get excited for. A course like this is actually quite enjoyable to play. More so, the challenge and everything with it. But the views are spectacular, the course is quite neat, there is a lot of creativity you have to have here, especially on the greens.”

Here is my quick chat with Graeme McDowell — it was cut short because, well, some big dude (I have no idea if he was even affiliated with McDowell) took umbrage with me disturbing Graeme (but Graeme was totally cool!) because “he has a press conference tomorrow!” But whatever, big dude. Here’s what Graeme McDowell (who, again, has always been cool to me) said:

“Golf course is good, fast, impressive… on a massive scale. I like it a lot, it’s a very good golf course.

Graeme McDowell signs autographs for some fans.

Graeme McDowell signs autographs for some fans.

I think the greens are big and fast and undulating and we’re going to be putting from long range. Putting is going to be a massive part of the week.”

NOT my typical amount of player interviews, I’ll admit. I’ll blame old age, the long walk from maintenance to the course, and mostly the fact that there doesn’t seem to be a good spot to catch the guys as they come off No. 18 green.

In fact, this may be the most challenging U.S. Open I’ve ever worked, layout-wise. I wish I had a pedometer on me today to track how many miles I walked, from taking photos in the morning, to marching back and forth to maintenance.

I’ll see if I can catch more players tomorrow. If that fails, I’m storming one of those chalets on No. 18 tee, and you’ll at least get the scouting report from inside there…

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About the Author: Seth Jones

Seth Jones, a 25-year veteran of the golf industry media, is Editor-in-Chief of Golfdom magazine and Athletic Turf. A graduate of the University of Kansas School of Journalism and Mass Communications, Jones began working for Golf Course Management in 1999 as an intern. In his professional career he has won numerous awards, including a Turf and Ornamental Communicators Association (TOCA) first place general feature writing award for his profile of World Golf Hall of Famer Greg Norman and a TOCA first place photography award for his work covering the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. In his career, Jones has accumulated an impressive list of interviews, including such names as George H.W. Bush, Samuel L. Jackson, Lance Armstrong and Charles Barkley. Jones has also done in-depth interviews with such golfing luminaries as Norman, Gary Player, Nick Price and Lorena Ochoa, to name only a few. Jones is a member of both the Golf Writers Association of America and the Turf and Ornamental Communicators Association. Jones can be reached at sjones@northcoastmedia.net.

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