An Interview With: CHAD CAMPBELL
September 20, 2006
CHAD CAMPBELL: Yeah, it was unusual. It was a great idea. Obviously it was a tough day out there weather wise, and it's really not a good day to sit out there and beat balls all day. I think what we did was great, go out there and hit some shots from 100 yards and play a little alternate shot and just have a good time. I think that was the main objective.
Q. You, like many players from Texas, are a good wind player. Ian Woosnam was in here before and said that he thinks these conditions favour the Europeans because they are more accustomed to playing in it, and he also said with the wind, with the heavy air here, that the wind has a more pronounced effect on draws and fades than it does in America with a similar miles per hour. Do you agree that the Europeans have an advantage in these conditions and have you noticed that about winds here?
CHAD CAMPBELL: I have noticed about the winds, definitely, they are strong. I think a 15 mile an hour wind over here is probably closer to a two club wind whereas at home it's probably a one club wind. It's definitely a lot stronger.
As far as the advantage, I don't know that I really see that. Most of the time we do play in good weather back in the States, but there are times when it's not so good early in the year. You know, we're on that West Coast, we have some pretty nasty conditions at times. I don't know, I guess I don't really believe in that. Me personally, growing up in Texas, we have a little bit of everything as far as weather wise.
Q. The experience you had last time in the Ryder Cup, can you just talk about what was the most difficult about that, and how was this different and how do you feel going into this one?
CHAD CAMPBELL: You know, this one is a little bit different obviously because I knew a little bit I know what to expect now.
You know, it's something you can't tell the guys for the first time. You know, I'm trying to tell them, you're going to be nervous, it's just the way it is. Kind of a little bit of what to expect, but until you get here and go through it, it's unexplainable. The feeling that you have on the first tee, each day, especially the very first day, it's an awesome feeling and it's also something you've never gone through before.
What was the other part of your question, I'm sorry?
Q. What do you expect out of yourself this time and how much more comfortable are you?
CHAD CAMPBELL: I'm definitely way more comfortable. Like I say, you know, knowing what it's about, how everything works, how you go through the week.
I think more than anything, you've got to learn, kind of going back to the other question, but you don't have to wear yourself out early in the week, practising too much and the dinners and all of the stuff that we have to do. You know, it's just take it easy and relax and not get so tense and worked up about everything. If you stay out there practising all day, you'll wear yourself down.
And obviously I expect a lot of myself to contribute and to help the team win. That's obviously the main goal. It's not about individuals here, but individuals win the points. Two individuals win the points in the first two days. So to help my team get a point, that's my main goal.
Q. Just to follow up a little bit about what you said about the feeling on the first tee, you said it was awesome. Can you go into a little more detail? What do you feel like, what do you see and who do you hear and what are you thinking about when you are on the first tee for the first time?
CHAD CAMPBELL: Obviously it's a little different, but going up the first tee on at Oakland Hills, the 'go USA' chants were just so loud. I don't think we're going to hear that here. It's still going to be a great feeling and obviously Europe is going to have all the fans behind them.
Just being on the first tee knowing you're representing your country and with all of your teammates, it's just an awesome feeling.
Q. Can you compare the leadership styles of Hal Sutton and Tom Lehman?
CHAD CAMPBELL: Yeah, they are definitely a little bit different, both of which did a good job. I don't think Hal did a bad job by any means.
I think Tom's been awesome, though. He's really gotten us together throughout the last two years, actually. He pretty much had dinners and stuff for everybody, pretty much all the Americans, not necessarily the people, obviously because you didn't know who the teams were going to be, but just pretty much all Americans, he had a couple of those each year. And obviously the trip over here to see the course, familiarize ourselves with it, I think he's done pretty much everything he can do to prepare us.
Q. I remember at the Sony Open this year, Tom had just distributed his letter. That was something you felt he built on throughout the season? What other things did he do?
CHAD CAMPBELL: That he built on?
Q. That Tom did, because he had done the letter for you all right at beginning of the season. What happened, what followed after that that you thought added to what he's done?
CHAD CAMPBELL: He obviously put a few letters in the locker throughout the year. Just telling you, you know, play good and all the best and hope we have you on the team and stuff like that.
You know, little stuff like that's great. It's just showing so much effort and it means so much to Tom that you can just see it, and you know, when he talks to us, just everything he does, this event is very important to him as well as all the team members.
Q. Tiger was in here today and gave a very impassioned statement about things that were printed about his wife and other wives on the team. I just want to find out what the team thinks about that and what you specifically think about that your wife was mentioned in one of the stories, too?
CHAD CAMPBELL: Well, I didn't see it. Obviously it's unfortunate. You know, I'm not going to answer for Tiger. I'm sure he cleared everything up for you guys. But, you know, I'm sure it was probably a little bit uncalled for. But you know it's going to happen so just kind of deal with it.
Q. Was there a particular importance for you guys to win the Presidents Cup last year? And the way that you won it, do you think it was just a crossroads in any way for how the team came together? Do you think there's some momentum that can be built to carry over here?
CHAD CAMPBELL: Well, I wasn't on the Presidents Cup team last year, but it was great, you know, for the guys in the United States to get a win and to build momentum. I think we learned a lot from that and we might be using a little bit of the attitude that those guys took into that, and it definitely worked out for them last year, had a lot of success.
Q. Do you feel a little pressure at all to try to sort of live up to a lot of expectations that you're going to be a rising superstar and all that kind of stuff? I know guys that qualified high in the points have established records in these events. Do you feel like you're ready to step up now?
CHAD CAMPBELL: Yeah, I do. You know, I've won a few tournaments on Tour. Obviously I would have liked to have won more. But, you know, I'd like to maybe get a major here shortly.
Obviously I feel like I'm working on the right things and working toward that way, being a more consistent player and try to get into the upper echelon of players out there, it's tough. Those guys, Tiger goes out there every week and, you know, he's so dedicated every week. He finishes, and if he's not winning, he's right there close to it.
That's probably the most impressive thing about him. Even when he doesn't win, he's playing his best and he still puts himself in position to win. That's what I'm working toward.
GORDON SIMPSON: Well, Chad, thank you very much.
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