The PGA Tour has not even reached the East Coast yet in 2019 and already Tiger Woods has one eye trained toward the Masters.
In fact, Woods admitted Wednesday, in advance of this weekend’s WGC-Mexico Championship in Mexico City, that the Masters, set for April 11-14, grabbed his attention long before this week.
“(It) started probably back in October, November,” Woods at a Wednesday press conference in Mexico, of the major tournament he has won four times, including his most recent in 2005.
With the PGA Tour having already roared through Hawaii, California and Arizona, it will reach Florida next week for the Honda Classic at Palm Beach Gardens, Fla. Then there is the Arnold Palmer Invitational at Bay Hill, Fla., a tournament Woods has won eight times.
With four consecutive Florida tournaments on the horizon, Woods is starting to realize there is too much of a good thing ahead. He wants to find the sweet spot between too many rounds before the Masters, and not enough.
“From here on out, it’s very complicated,” Woods said. “That’s what I’m trying to figure out; how much to play, how much is too much, how much is not enough.”
The 14-time major winner, whose last grand slam tournament victory came at the 2008 U.S. Open, was tied for 15th at last weekend’s Genesis Open at Riviera Country Club in Pacific Palisades, Calif. He also finished tied for 20th at the Jan. 23-26 Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines, in La Jolla, Calif.
Unlike at last year’s Masters, when Woods finished tied for 32nd while just making his return from spinal fusion surgery, he sounds as if he has more confidence this time around.
“Last year was different, and in previous years it was nonexistent,” Woods said. “This year, to be able to ramp up a schedule and to be able to know what I can and can’t do going into the event, is a lot more comforting than this has been in the previous years because it’s been kind of an unknown going into that event.”