This week has been a rollercoaster of media attention for Casey Martin. The Oregon men’s golf coach was a surprise qualifier for the U.S. Open at the Olympic Golf Course in San Francisco next week. KLCC’s Rachael McDonald reports from a press conference Friday at the University of Oregon.
Casey Martin competed on the same course in the U.S. Open in 1998, a year after he won a lawsuit against the PGA to allow him to use a cart during competition. Martin has a physical condition that makes it difficult to walk long distances.
At 40, he says he’s nervous about going back to such a tough course:
“It is a really formidable challenge, in fact, not negative because it’s what makes the U.S. Open the U.S. Open," Martin says. "But it is so difficult it keeps me up at night a little bit thinking, 'Gosh, not only have I not competed I don’t even play much golf so now.' I go from nothing to that, it’s kind of a daunting task. But it’s also fun to think about.”
Martin says he’s keeping his expectations realistic, but he’d love to survive the cut at mid-tournament.
He’ll be decked out in Nike’s Oregon colors. He says fellow Stanford-grad Tiger Woods invited him to join him on a practice round Tuesday. [I’m Rachael McDonald in Eugene.]
Copyright 2012 KLCC