RBC Canadian Open

Tuesday, June 6, 2023

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Oakdale Golf & Country Club

Mike Weir

Press Conference

THE MODERATOR: We're joined by Mike Weir here at the 2023 RBC Canadian Open. Eight-time PGA TOUR winner. Mike, obviously serving as a Presidents Cup captain in 2024, originally we had some news to share today, but we're going to push that down the road a little bit. But ahead of your 30th start in the RBC Canadian Open if we could just get an opening comment from you on what it means to be playing in your National Open.

MIKE WEIR: Well, it's always an honor to be back playing the Canadian Open. 30 years. 30 or 31? 30, I think.

THE MODERATOR: This is number 30.

MIKE WEIR: This is 30. A lot of great memories over the years. From my first time qualifying for the event to when I was in college and getting in on a Monday qualifier. I remember winning in a playoff to get in, how excited I was to play my first Canadian Open. And to sit here 30 years later to still be playing is amazing. So, yeah, looking forward to getting the start here in a couple days again.

THE MODERATOR: Obviously this is Oakdale's first time hosting the Canadian Open. Could you give us an idea of your familiarity with this golf course and if you've seen it this week at all.

MIKE WEIR: You know, not very much at all. I was telling some guys that I think I was 15 or 16 years old was the last time I played here. You guys know Brennan Little, who caddies for Gary Woodland now, we played an Ontario Best Ball here. And the only thing I remember about it was that Brennan eagled the last hole for to us get in a playoff and we won the Ontario Best Ball when we were 16. So I think a lot of the older amateurs weren't too happy with a couple 16-year-old kids winning the Ontario Best Ball. But I think that was the last time I was here and playing the golf course.

So got around to play the front nine today. Very challenging front nine. The back nine may be a little bit more scorable. Course is in great condition though.

THE MODERATOR: We'll take some questions.

Q. The bombshell that was dropped today about LIV and the PGA merging. What's your reaction to that?

MIKE WEIR: Well, I'm kind of finding out as just like you guys did. There's not a lot of detail. So I don't really know much about it yet. So hopefully in the next few days we'll hear as things kind of unroll or roll out to see what the details, from my perspective, being a Presidents Cup captain, where that leads. I don't have any answers on that now. But I'm as interested as anybody to see where that goes here in the next few days, few weeks.

Q. Do you have any moral concerns about the PGA getting into bed with the Saudi government, essentially?

MIKE WEIR: You know, that's not my -- right now, I mean, there's so many things up in the air. I don't know. It's not, I hadn't really thought much about that.

Q. In the game of golf steeped in history, how important is it to have the world's best players playing together if we want to look at history books and records?

MIKE WEIR: I think that's important, yeah. I mean, I think that is. When the best players are playing together I think everybody wins. When you see, like at the PGA Championship there in New York, when the best players are there, I think it gets everybody's game up to a certain level. And to be frank, when I was playing at my best I wanted to be playing against the best players. So I think that's a good thing for the game.

Q. How is your game right now? I know after the Masters you said you were maybe going to be looking at or working on your putting. How are things going into this week?

MIKE WEIR: Yeah, I'm actually putting pretty well. The rest of my game's just not been super sharp, but things are kind of coming together. I haven't played quite as much as I would like to coming into here. A lot of stuff going on. But I think this golf course kind of suits me pretty well. I think that's -- I'm excited about that. It's not an overbearing long course. It's more strategy and you have to get the ball in the fairway. So that maybe suits my game a little bit more than maybe some other courses.

Q. When you back in 2004 when you got in that playoff with Vijay, what did you, what did something like that mean to you in terms of coming that close and yet not getting quite over the lip? Like what was the last playoff holes for you? You knew you could end the drought and I wonder if that was in the back of your mind and what that would feel like for a player who might be doing it this week.

MIKE WEIR: Yeah, I mean, I would say that maybe that's a little bit different scenario for the other players this week. I think for the time period in my game where it was, I was one of the best players in the world, the expectations were high. It was, there was a big, the World Cup hockey was in there. There was such a big energy going on at Glen Abbey that year. And hopefully if one of the Canadian guys and somebody gets in contention it will be like that. But I suspect it probably wouldn't be that insane that it was that week. So that was a little bit maybe different.

But I guess to answer your question as to how I felt, yeah, those things, can't help but those things run through your mind. To be the first Canadian to win that in over 50 years. Those are things you got to temper and put behind you and just try to get on with business. But it's hard to do. No doubt.

Q. If anybody wins the Canadian Open this year I would love to see you win it.

MIKE WEIR: Thank you.

Q. But if you can't or you don't there's so many Canadians in contention. What would it mean to you personally for a Canadian to win the Canadian Open this year?

MIKE WEIR: Oh, it would be fantastic. I would love to see, if it's not myself, one of the other guys win this week. Nothing would make me happier and put a smile on my face and go shake whoever's hand that is and congratulate 'em. Because it's due. We have such a great crop of guys now that could get it done. Where, maybe in my day, there was a couple of us. Now there's multiple guys that could win this championship. So it would be a thrill. It would be great.

Q. Obviously the Presidents Cup is right there. The runway is getting shorter after every week. But on a week like this when you're teeing it up on the PGA TOUR are you introducing yourself to maybe some people who maybe they don't know who you are or how saying hi to some potential guys that might be on that team?

MIKE WEIR: Definitely if I see guys on the range or in the locker room that are some up and comers and I'm trying to make myself familiar for them and to let them know that I'm here to talk to 'em about whatever questions they may have. We're sticking some tee shirts and hats in some guys lockers this week. Just get 'em thinking about it. Even though we're a year and a half out, I've been getting a lot of questions about it from some of the guys internally. Guys are very interested. I think anybody who's been on the team knows how special it is and they want to be on the team. So we have some great Canadians playing really well. That would be a real thrill for me to, you know, if two, three, four of these guys can make the team, it would be really special.

Q. You've talked in the past about, obviously you took a major championship over the hump, you won the Masters. For the guys to get into the mix more often, like Corey at the PGA Championship, was in the final group on Saturday, how much, how important is that for the guys who are, maybe have won on the PGA TOUR, but now they're looking forward to breaking through and winning a major themselves, how important is it to get in the mix?

MIKE WEIR: Yeah, I think it's really important. I think it's more unusual than usual for guys not to have those steps and those where you fall back and maybe don't get over the line. And you learn from it and then you take another little step forward and then hopefully win one of these big ones. So it's unusual that you get in that position the first time and win one. We have some special players in the history of the game that have done that. But the majority of guys, it's a learning curve. So the more often you can get yourself in those positions. And even if you don't play your best, you try to learn from it and you will be a little bit stronger the next time.

Q. You spoke about how special this tournament is. Does this morning's announcement change that at all for this week?

MIKE WEIR: No, not at all. That's an announcement for the TOUR and what's going on with the future of the TOUR and what that looks like. But we're all here this week. The guys, however many, 156 guys that are here, are focused on winning this championship. For me personally that doesn't change a thing. I'm trying to get ready for Thursday. I'll go back to the range and get practicing. It's something that's going on and that will all shake itself out. But, yeah, it doesn't change anything.

THE MODERATOR: All right, Mike. Thank you very much and best of luck this week.

MIKE WEIR: Thanks, Jack. Thanks, everybody.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports
133665-2-1001 2023-06-07 23:22:00 GMT

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