Time management as important as course management at Presidents Cup
SAN FRANCISCO — During a typical week on the PGA Tour, professional golfers get to set their own schedules. They can practice as long as they like, eat where and when they choose, and prepare for the start of the tournament however they want. In short, golfers get to be selfish.
But the Presidents Cup is all about the team, and a player's time is not his own. Canadian Mike Weir, an International team veteran who has played in four previous Cups, noted that players have to attend several functions early in the week and are constantly being shuttled all over town.
Still, each player has to get his homework done. In order to be ready to play his best, Weir says, it's important take full advantage of the practice time he gets. "You have got to make the most of when you're out there on the range and on the golf course to get done what you need to get done."
Camilo Villegas (above), a native of Colombia who is making his Presidents Cup debut this week at Harding Park, seems to have an attitude tailored for weeks like this.
"There is time for everything," he said Tuesday afternoon. "Yes, you have your commitments with the team and with the media. Yes, you have to sign X and Y stuff. But at the end of the day, you still have two or three hours that are your time. I'm one of those guys who think that it's important to be in the gym, so I'm going to find time to go to the gym. I'm going to find time to do my practice. I'm going to find time to be with the team. It's a matter of being organized. If you are organized you can have time for everything and prepare yourself for the best."
South Africa's Tim Clark, preparing to compete in his third Presidents Cup, takes a slightly different approach.
"I don't do a whole lot of practice during tournament weeks," he said. "I play the pro-am and hit a few putts on a Wednesday, and I'm pretty much ready for the tournament. So adjusting to this is not a big deal."
Clark said that the event's off-the-course commitments — like team dinners, Ping-Pong matches and bus rides — are part of the fun of competing in a Presidents Cup. But don't confuse Clark's relaxed attitude with ambivalence.
"Come Thursday, everyone will have done what they need to do to get their game right," he said.
(Photo: Monica Davey/Getty Images)