Cheyenne Woods discusses the massive amount of travel she does (1:55), desire to go play golf in Iceland (2:52), her process during tournament weeks (3:58), how she manages attention (8:20), earliest memories watching LPGA/PGA (11:00), striking balance between idolizing Tiger and making a name for herself (14:00), her question to Tiger in the media center at the 2013 U.S. Open (16:55), interest in working in media (19:20), how long she wants to play golf (21:15), her interest in fashion (23:45) and her charity trip to Africa with Golf Fore Africa (27:30).
On Traveling the World on the LPGA Tour
“I’m blessed to be able to live this life and be a professional golfer and travel the world. I always think about it when I’m getting ready for my next trip and I’m flipping through my passport and I see all these stamps. A lot of my friends don’t get to travel as much as I do. They don’t play golf and they don’t travel for their jobs so I’m very lucky to get to experience what I have.
On what country she wants to play in that she hasn’t visited
“I would love to go to Iceland, which sounds really random. I had a college teammate at Wake Forest, Olavia, she plays on the European Tour now, but she is from Iceland.”
On her typical tournament week
“This past year was my first year on the LPGA so my process was something I really had to learn as I was going event to event. I needed to learn my surroundings, who to talk to, how I was going to structure my practice, how pro-am’s work. There is a lot more that goes into a tournament week than people might think.”
On who she communicates with during the week
“I mainly communicate with my caddie Reynolds and my mom, who doesn’t travel with me, but is always here for me at home in Phoenix. She is my number one fan, my travel agent and my personal organizer. She helps me with everything. I am a very unorganized person and mom is always there save the day so I’m very thankful for her. “
On how she deals with extra attention
“Growing up with the last name of Woods, I’ve had a lot of attention on and off the golf course. Whether it is media or fans, I’ve kind of been raised with that sort of attention. I’ve learned how to manage it while I am playing and practicing. It is almost second nature to have to manage it now. Whether it is a 67 or a 77, people are there to support me and they took the time out of their day to come and watch. My fans are amazing.”
On her earliest memories of the LPGA
“I grew up in Phoenix so I would always go to the Safeway Classic or the Phoenix Open. Ever since I was eight or nine years old, I would go out there when I didn’t have school and walk and watch all the guys and girls play. My earliest memories are watching Annika. I was there when she shot a 59 and that was actually the home course that I grew up playing.”
On creating her own identity with the Woods last name
It is definitely difficult. Like I said, Tiger was the only one in my family that really played golf. Obviously, my grandfather is the one that got me started, but competitively, Tiger was the one. I looked up to him ever since I was five years old. I was a fan. It was hard for me to make that connection when I was that young that he was a member of my family. I had the t-shirts and all the Tiger Woods Nike stuff. I definitely looked up to him as a lot of young kids did because he made golf so cool. I wanted to be like him. Once I started playing competitively and then collegiately, that is all people saw. They just saw Tiger Woods in me. So, it was difficult to create that separation in my identity. All I can do is be myself and hopefully people will get to know that and recognize that.
On Asking Tiger a Question at the 2013 U.S. Open press conference
“I was working for Back9Network and I was going to majors that year and just kind of helping with media. It was an idea from them to just go to the press conference more for just experience. I asked Rory a question, asked another player a question and then Tiger’s press conference came up. I was very, very nervous. I didn’t even know if I really wanted to ask a question. I was one of the only females in the room which I thought was crazy. So, Tiger is doing his press conference and I raise my hand. My heart was racing so fast. I don’t think he recognized me at first because there are so many people in the room. He saw me and just started laughing.
On how long she wants to play golf
That’s kind of a tough question for golfers, you can really play your whole life if your ability allows you play on Tour that long. There is no real expiration like you have in other sports like basketball, football or soccer where their careers are really cut off at a certain time. For me, there is no set age. I kind of want to just feel it out. On the women’s side, I think it’s a tough question too because some women decide not to play because of the family aspect.
On golf fashion
I remember growing up playing golf when I was 10, 11, 12 years old and I had to wear boys golf clothes as a junior golfer. There were no girls golf clothes at the time. I would have the little khakis and the oversized polos and the belt looped around twice. It was not cute. I’m definitely thankful for how golf fashion has evolved as my career has evolved.
On getting involved in Golf Fore Africa
I got involved through Betsy King, who co-founded the organization. I met her a few years ago. She lives out in Phoenix and we were practicing at the same course. I heard stories from Katherine Kirk and Stacy Lewis and their trips to Africa. I’ve always been big in giving to those that are less fortunate. We are blessed with not only financials, but also the basic necessities in life like water. These people in Africa don’t have clean water. To hear that they don’t have clean water is one thing, but to go there and see the water that they were drinking is a whole other thing. It was brown. It was dirty. We want to go back and raise money for a new well system that will not only give water to one or two villages, but thousands of people.