By now the story of the U.S. Ryder Cup rain suits (and generally silly-looking apparel in general) is an old story. However, in an interview Monday at the Chevron World Challenge Media Day, Tiger responded to a question regarding whether the malfunction of the suits could've been made the difference in the match with a definite "maybe."
Q. One of the things, just going back to the Ryder Cup for a minute I never really got to ask you about that over there is I know Steve's been caddying since he was 12 years old. He's pretty good at keeping clubs dry, but he was unable to keep your clubs dry for most of that week. The other issue was the rain suits which leaked and guys were walking around with very heavy suits. I know these are all little things, but when you look at it, it was only half a point that separated victory from defeat. Do you look back on that and say, you know, maybe we should have figured these things out a little bit better beforehand with the equipment?
TIGER WOODS: Well, there's no doubt. I think that those are issues that should be resolved before we get there so they're not an issue while playing. Come tournament time there are always going to be things that pop up, and you just have to deal with them. It happens in every team event I've ever been a part of. But little things like that, I think could have been taken care of so they weren't an issue. Or at least have been tested prior to game time so that any kind of corrections that could have been made, would have been made.
In this case, Tiger might be saying nicely what should have been made pretty clear, in not so pleasant terms, to Corey Pavin, his wife Lisa, or whoever had the responsibility of choosing the U.S. apparel: make sure the stuff works 100 percent of the time before the matches begin. And take my word for it, finding a rainsuit that's completely waterproof isn't that hard. I've stood in pouring rain with 30 mph winds in Zero Restriction rain gear and stayed completely dry.
If you're interested in Sun Mountain's (the U.S. rain suit provider) on the situation, check out the Golf.com story here. Tiger returning to Riviera? In the same interview at the Chevron World Challenge Media Day, Tiger was asked about his possible return to playing at Riviera, and whether or not he's heard from former Laker great and current Northern Trust Open executive director Jerry West on the subject. His response was guarded, but it definitely sounds like the current No. 1 player in the world might be returning to the place he's competed the most without notching a victory. Tiger first played at the L.A. Open (as it was called back then) in 1992 as a 16-year-old amateur. He's played it ten more times since then. Here's what he had to say about playing at Riv in 2011:
TIGER WOODS: As far as coming back, I'm always excited to come back to So Cal. This is where I grew up and where I lived most of my life. So for me to come back is always fun. Fun to see friends and go out to dinner with people that I haven't seen in a long time, so I always enjoy that about coming back home. Then playing in front of the hometown fans, it's always fun. As far as Jerry West contacting me, he hasn't of yet, but there is still some time (laughing).