South African Louis Oosthuizen, the 2010 Open champ, on winning at St. Andrews, how to shoot a 57, and some advice for raising daughters.
We’ve swapped spirits for caffeine today. Louis, how are you taking your coffee?
Black, with two sugars. I can’t start my day without having at least two cups of coffee in the morning.
When you have a drink at the end of the day, what’s your go-to?
I’ve got my Louis 57 [brand] wines. It started out as a sort of a hobby, and I really got into it. It’s something my wife and I enjoy a lot.
It’s been six years since your British Open victory at St. Andrews, and you almost won there again last year. What is it about the Old Course that brings out your best?
I felt really comfortable last year at the Open. I thought, I’m going to win this week, no one’s going to beat me. That helped me going into the last round. I was positive, played really good golf, and it was tough [conditions]. You haven’t played an Open Championship until you play it in St. Andrews. It’s where the game started, and that’s what golf is all about.
Did you drink coffee out of the Claret Jug, or something stronger?
Wine—but I didn’t care about drinking out of it. I just wanted to look at it. It’s quite special.
How civilized! Did you take the Claret Jug anywhere of note?
I took it to most of the tournaments [afterward], to have it at the functions. But it’s nerve-racking to travel with it. I was so scared that I would lose it. I don’t want to be the guy who loses the Claret Jug.
You never seem to show any nerves on the course. You always appear so relaxed. What’s your secret?
If I don’t enjoy playing golf, or can’t relax [when I do], then I don’t want to play. I do get cross, and I do get upset on the course. And disappointed as well. But you have got to have fun. If you don’t have fun, then it’s no good.
You call your brand “Louis 57.” Where did that come from?
In December of 2002, I shot 57 at my home club. I made two eagles and 11 birdies. And I actually putted out the whole round. I birdied 15 and 16 to get to 12-under. And then 17 was a par 5, and 18 was a short par 4, so I knew my chances for 59 were good. I chipped in for eagle on 17, and I made a 20-footer for birdie on 18, for 57. It was quite a fun day.
It must also be fun to have three young daughters. What’s your best advice for raising little girls?
I’m gonna get shotguns ready for when they grow up [to keep the boys away]. That’s the only advice I’ve got. [Laughs]