LA QUINTA, CA – The PGA TOUR’s next two stops will be within the Southern California PGA Section. Representing the SCPGA at the first stop will be 2017 Section Champion, Michael Block and 2016 Toyota Tour Cup Champion, Charlie Reiter.
Arroyo Trabuco Golf Course Head Professional Michael Block is no stranger to playing on PGA TOUR, as this will mark his 13th TOUR event. Block will be competing at the CareerBuilder Challenge in addition to Torrey Pines for the Farmers Insurance Open at the end of the month.
For young Charlier Rieter, this will be his first PGA TOUR event, an exciting moment made possible by his exceptional play in recent months. Reiter made the cut at the Australian Open, playing in a field with Jordan Spieth and Jason Day. Read his first Media Day Question and Answer below.
CareerBuilder Challenge Tuesday, January 16, 2018 Charlie Reiter Press Conference
DOUG MILNE: We would like to welcome Charlie Reiter to the interview room here at the CareerBuilder Challenge. Obviously most of y’all heard a lot about Charles making his first PGA TOUR start here this week at the event and coming off a made cut in Australia at the end of last year, so obviously very excited about this week. We know you’re kind of fighting a lit bit of a throat issue, so fortunately the microphones work well. So a few comments on being here this week and how excited you are.
CHARLIE REITER: I’m very excited, I’ve been coming here watching this tournament since I can remember, me and my dad, and now getting the chance to play out here is definitely a dream come true for me and I’d just like to thank all my coaches and everybody who’s helped me through the years out here.
DOUG MILNE: Have you had certain players that you kind of looked up to that you’re excited to be out here and meet?
CHARLIE REITER: Yeah, I recently played with Jon Rahm up at Big Horn, we both have a little membership up there and I kind of look up to him, and Phil Mickelson and players like that.
DOUG MILNE: Scale of one to 10, 10 being the most nervous, how are you feeling right now?
CHARLIE REITER: We can say a 10. (Laughter.)
DOUG MILNE: Questions? How does the preparation for this week feel any differently than what the preparation was in Australia when you made your first pro cut? CHARLIE REITER: It’s a little different here. Being at home you’re not 16 hours away on a flight. Being here it’s a little more easier for me preparing and being — I already know the golf courses, playing in local tournaments out here, so I think just being at home makes it a little easier. Q. How many people have asked you for tickets for the week?
CHARLIE REITER: A good amount.
A lot of friends and family want to come out and watch.
Q. What’s the week been like in terms of or not really even the week, but since you got the exemption, how much have you been playing out here on these three courses? I know you had told me that you weren’t all that familiar with La Quinta, even though it’s just down the road.
CHARLIE REITER: Yeah, I’ll be going out to La Quinta to play a little practice round later today, but I played here at Stadium and Nicklaus a bunch, so I should know them pretty well. But we’ll see how it goes.
DOUG MILNE: Did you have to go into school and say, hey look, guys, I’m not going to be here this week, I got a little something going on.
CHARLIE REITER: Yeah, I told all my teachers that I wasn’t going to be here all this week, so.
DOUG MILNE: Did they load you up with stuff to catch up on or is that going to be an after the fact kind of thing?
CHARLIE REITER: A couple of my teachers were like just look on-line, all the assignments are on there. All the other ones are pretty cool. Q. What do you expect or what are you hoping to get out of the experience this week?
CHARLIE REITER: I’m not really expecting anything from the event, I just want to go out here and have a good time and play as well as I possibly can. Q. You said you played around with Jon Rahm, was that eye opening to watch him play and did he give you any advice or what was that like?
CHARLIE REITER: Yeah, it was definitely eye opening. We played like 12 holes together and I think he had maybe, I don’t know, a 1-putt almost every single hole. He made like six straight birdies. It just showed me how good you have to be in certain areas of your game to be on the TOUR and be a top level golfer.
Q. That get to my question, which is, after Australia we talked, and you said that there would part of you that felt very comfortable being there and thatthat felt right to be there the, but that there were, there was another part of you that said, oh, I got things to do.
CHARLIE REITER: Yeah.
Q. I assume those things are from a hundred yards in, am I right?
CHARLIE REITER: Yeah, that’s exactly what they are.
Q. What’s your, how do you feel about, you seem so calm. You seemed calm going to Australia, you seem calm now, yet you say you’re on a scale of one to 10, a 10 being nervous. How do you mitigate that calmness or that nervousness and when you get on the first tee tomorrow or Thursday?
CHARLIE REITER: I know I’m nervous so I kind of just accept it and just kind of deal with it and let it go out and happen. If you’re nervous for something I believe that you just got to accept it and you’ll overcome that and it will just become more of a calming idea for you. Q. You have an interesting caddie this week. CHARLIE REITER: Yes. Q. Dave Stockton, Junior, who I think you worked with for a little while.
CHARLIE REITER: Yeah, he’s been my putting coach since I was 10.
Q. He won the Q-School on these courses once, has he told you that?
CHARLIE REITER: Yeah, he won it a couple times out here he told me.
Q. That’s different than Australia, on Australia it was your dad who was your caddie. What does that mean to have a guy like Stockton on your bag?
CHARLIE REITER: Definitely it’s actually really nice to have somebody who is, he’s one of my really good friends, I’ve known him since I was 10, and having him on the bag, knowing that he’s played out on these courses and won out here is kind of, it allows me to be more comfortable on the course knowing that he will be able to help me play through the course.
Q. Did you in your wildest dreams when you came back from Australia think that you would be playing in this tournament this year?
CHARLIE REITER: No, no way. I did not think it was going to happen, but it turned out to be that I was going to be able to play and I’m just really excited to be here.
DOUG MILNE: A couple little nuggets, kind of like when you first started playing golf, when you first broke par, when you first beat your dad, kind of thing.
CHARLIE REITER: I think the first time I ever played golf was pretty much when I could walk. My dad put clubs in my crib when I was born, so I was kind of born into golf, you could say. I don’t remember the first time I shot, broke par. And then first time I beat my dad? I think I was like 12. He was really good. He played in a bunch of mini tours and stuff like that and he was a really good stick, so it was a tough competition.
DOUG MILNE: How did that go over with his attitude when you beat him?
CHARLIE REITER: I think he quit for four years. (Laughter.) Now he’s coming back to play me again, so.
DOUG MILNE: I saw on the local news last the night that he’s under the weather.
CHARLIE REITER: Yeah, he’s in the hospital right now, he had a little — he was supposed to caddie for me in this tournament, but he had a little complication so he’s in the hospital now. But he should be fine and be out I think Thursday or Friday trying to come out and watch me.
Q. You’re 18 right now, first PGA start, PGA TOUR start, you’re already kind of the youth movement right now. Have you ever thought about the impact you’re having here in the valley with the young guns out here the young golfers, high school golfers, have you thought about the impact you’re having?
CHARLIE REITER: Yeah, I’ve always tried to bring up a younger generation here on, like the First Tee, I love the First Tee, I’ve always been out there. And I’ve met a couple younger kids probably like six, seventh grade, that I always see on the golf course, I always try to practice with them, give a little advice here and there. I always try to make the younger kids think golf isn’t so bad.
Q. Do you think you’re going to inspire kids to get into golf around here?
CHARLIE REITER: Yeah, that’s my plan. I hope to do that.
DOUG MILNE: All right, everybody good. Okay. Thanks again for the time. Best of luck this week to you.