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July 24, 2018

Lee Trevino

Oakville, Ontario, Canada

Q. First win of the Canadian Open in 1971 back in Montreal. What was your best memories about this win?
LEE TREVINO: This win here?

Q. Yeah, in Montreal?
LEE TREVINO: In Montreal, it was simply I was on a roll at the time. I wasn't even thinking well, to tell you the truth. I just had won the U.S. Open in a playoff against the greatest player that's ever played the game, Jack Nicklaus. I shot 68 on Monday. He shot, I think, 71. I beat him by three shots. So I actually was on cloud nine when I got here.

The hole looked like a bucket. In other words, it looked like a gallon bucket. I was very relaxed. I wasn't expecting a lot, to tell you the truth. But I fell in love with Richelieu. I liked that golf course. I liked it. You had to hit it straight, and I loved the greens. And it fit my game, bump-and-run type game.

So dogleg right, the first hole, I loved it. It doglegged to the right. 18 was a little difficult for me because of the ravine and everything else, but I just, you know, I didn't start there very well, as you remember. In fact, I was over par, I think, and then I came back a little bit, and then on the last day I was a little behind and eagled the first hole. I remember holing the wedge on number one, and then I got started.

But I tied Art Wall. Art Wall had a chance to make a 25-footer on the last hole to win, and he missed it, and then we went into the playoff. I think the first playoff hole, if I'm not mistaken, I made about a 35-foot left-breaking putt. I remember it like yesterday, and beat him. Then I went from there to Royal Birkdale and won the Open Championship.

Q. So many great accomplishments in your Hall of Fame career. Winning the Triple Crown, only you and Tiger have done it.
LEE TREVINO: I never thought anybody would do it. It's very difficult to get these -- it's very difficult to get these guys to play these tournaments. There are so many good tournaments out today and they're playing for so much money. Back in the old days when we played, and no disrespect to the players today, I don't blame them for taking some time off, because they are -- if you can win, you don't need to do much else.

But we had to play. There wasn't that much in it. If they told you before, I won three Canadian Opens, I think I won $165,000 combined with all three of them.

Q. I was going to say that, what does a Triple Crown mean to you as far as ranking?
LEE TREVINO: Like I said, it's the third oldest tournament. And anytime you can win a country's open, it's a feather in your hat. I don't care where it's at. If it's the Open of that country, that means every player in the world, every player in that country tried to qualify to get into that tournament. So the competition is stiff.

Q. Jon Vegas is trying to win his third Canadian Open this week. As someone who did that, what advice would you give him in attempts to complete this feat?
LEE TREVINO: I wouldn't give him any advice, because I never won two in a row in the same place. I did win the British Open back-to-back. But I don't give advice, no. I watch just like everybody else. Every week is different. Your swing leaves you a little bit, confidence is everything. You've got to get to the guy's head.

The question is how's your confidence level? When a guy tells you I'm hitting on all cylinders, you better watch it. But if a guy tells you, I'm not doing this very good, and I'm not doing that very good, so subsequently, what he's going to do is he's wasting a little bit of precious practice time at that golf tournament, trying to figure out something, and you can't do that. Darrell Royal, which coached for the Texas Longhorns said it right. He said, When you go to a dance, you've got to dance with who brung you. You can't be looking for somebody else in there to dance with, you know what I'm saying? Because you don't know their steps. When you take a partner to a dance, you know their steps.

Q. What are your people memories of this golf course as far as the design is concerned, and the prospect of that being developed?
LEE TREVINO: Well, I actually don't have a comment either way. I can remember every hole on this golf course, I remember the 9th hole was a very difficult hole for us short hitters, because I had to hit 3-woods, and I watched the guys in the past and watch this tournament every year, and they're hitting 8-irons and 7-irons but these guys hit it 350, 325. They fly if 308. We were a 240 hitter. No. 18 and No. 16 is a gimme to them, you know what I'm saying?

But I'm never in favor of developing any golf course, regardless of where it's at. You have to understand, the gentleman that owns this. You've got to have a little bit of thought about what he's thinking. I don't know of any golf course that I have ever seen, for the exception of Shinnecock, maybe, or maybe some of the golf courses, Pebble Beach, maybe, that are on a piece of property that's worth $2 million an acre. You understand what I'm saying? Those things don't happen.

Generally, when you build a golf course, especially as late as they built this one in 1975, generally you're given the bad part of real estate, you understand? Because nothing can be built there. It's flood plain a little bit, whatever.

If this whole golf course was built in that valley, there would be no argument, because you can't built houses there because it's a flood plain. It happens that this property is on top. It's very expensive. And not a good deal either way. I would love to see the course stay, but you have to understand his part of it too.

Q. (Indiscernible) walking along the line there. Do you look at guys on TV and say, I can help this guy, he's doing something wrong? Do they ask advice of you?
LEE TREVINO: Yeah, but you don't ever -- you never teach anyone that's fixing to play. You don't want to ruin their day. You have to understand this, when you give someone a lesson, the worst thing in the world is teaching at a club or any length. Because the person that takes the lesson is going to go right away out to the golf course, and after four holes it's not working and he's going to revert back to his old way.

Well, he's going to revert back to his old way. You always go to your strong suit. It's like teaching a guy to get out of a hook, and you do it on the driving range. As soon as he gets on the course, the fade is not working, so he's going to go back to his hook. You understand? Because that's what he's familiar with, and that's what he wants to play with.

If you're going to change something, you have to take the time to practice, practice, practice, and leave the playing alone.

Q. You see guys on TV and say, oh, man, this guy's all screwed up?
LEE TREVINO: Oh, I've seen them and they look like pretzel makers. But there's something you can do about that. That's the whole thing about golf. Golf changes daily. You get up, and you saw Tiger Woods at the British Open, creeking his neck, had the taped-up neck, the whole thing. Slept on the pillow wrong. That moves everything. That moves everything. That changes the shoulder turn. That will change just about everything.

So there's a lot of things that you have to do, and everything is where you're -- the ground. Do you hit down on it? I was talking to DJ this morning, and he said to me, he said No. 18 killed me. I said, what happened there? He said, well, I was trying to hit a wedge in there, and the ground, he said all the grass is dead, and he said when I hit down into the ground there, I wasn't using a lot of speed, and he said the heel caught. When the heel caught, he said the club face went boom, this way. And he said, actually, it took loft off the club, and I pulled it, and went over the green.

Q. Earlier you were talking about the modern game, the modern player, the modern equipment, the modern ball. Do you think anything can be done to dial it back or just let them go?
LEE TREVINO: It would take years to dial it back. Manufacturers are set up, the lobbying and the lawsuits, it wouldn't be worth it. It would damage the game more than anything. The question is this, they've done some modifications. I'm totally against the long putter. Always have been. I have the solution about the long putter. The way the rule is written is kind of vague anyway. It's just intent. Well, if they catch you taking the putter and putting it up, putting your hand up against your chest, and they call it on you, well, my intention was not to do it. Now where the hell do you go from there? You understand intent.

I talked to the USGA, I talked to the PGA, I talked to everybody until I was blue in the face, and said, you took the driver and took it to where it was only 48 inches long. They made a rule. The size of the head of the driver can only be 460 CCs. Okay.

Now they have the rule where the club has to be at least 18 inches long, that's a rule. Why can't they make the putter the shortest club in your bag? Then if you want to anchor it, stick it in your pocket, or whatever you want to do with it, you do it. You understand? If you can anchor with a 35-inch putter, anchor with it.

There were a lot of guys back in the old days. I mean, Billy Casper put his left-hand on his thigh, and he went like this, he anchored. So you can anchor a short putter. But there's still a lot of stuff out there about the club being, you know -- about the club, people anchoring and everything. They've been on poor Bernhard Langer forever. Even the USGA called him in on the block.

But the word intent is there. No I'm not intending to do it. I could care less, whether it does. But they could remedy that. They could make it so easy. Why do they make it so difficult? Just make it the shortest club in your bag.

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