Dodo Molinari and the US Open: “America, I’m back. And I’m at my best at 40!”

Francesco’s older brother qualified for the third major of the season. In 2005 he had won the edition reserved for amateurs: “Torrey Pines is a difficult field, but I like them like that”

Matteo Dore

Tomorrow he will be the first to show up on the starting tee of hole 1. At 6.45 am – 3.45 pm Italian time – Edoardo “Dodo” Molinari will open the US Open of golf in Torrey Pines, San Diego. A particularly Italian edition, because besides him there will also be his brother Francesco and Guido Migliozzi. Three blues in an American major, a great satisfaction. Dodo hasn’t played a Major since 2015. The last Us Open was ten years ago. But he has a special relationship with the United States. In 2005 he even won the Us Amateur, the tournament reserved for the best amateurs. On the Open website, in his presentation sheet, they recall that Chicco was bringing him the bag that day. “But go, they’re wrong, a boy I met at the qualifiers was my caddy. He hadn’t passed so I asked him to accompany me and help me. Francesco brought me the bag the following year, at the Masters” .

What do you remember of those days at the Us Amateur? The camp was Marion, near Philadelphia.

“It was a period similar to this, I played well but I went there without expectations also because at the time very few Europeans went to America to do that tournament. It was impossible to expect who knows what. But I have always liked very difficult fields and also in the Us Amateur, as is always the case with the Us Open, are always prepared for the worst possible… High roughs, fast greens. But it was a perfect week. A month later, in September, I also graduated in engineering. Days to remember… “.

Do you think you have had the career you deserve since then? Or what was he hoping for?

“In my opinion, one deserves what he sows. If one works he reap the rewards, it is not that they come simply because you are good or nice. But if they had told me at the time that I would have won three times on the European Tour, plus several victories on the Challenge , then the World Cup and even Ryder I would not have believed it. I expected much less. “

He spoke of difficult fields. He has played three US Open. 2006, 2010, 2011. What was the hardest?

“I would say Winged Foot, the first. That year Geoff Ogilvy won with a total score of + 5. Practically on the verge of unplayability. Plus I was still an amateur and I wasn’t used to such fields”.

Now there is Torrey Pines.

“I don’t know it yet, but I’m happy to … ‘taste it’. In the first few days of testing the rough made an impression on me. The grass is so tall that you eat balls.”

Where do you think you are in your career? In golf they win very young and even in their fifties, as Phil Mickelson demonstrated in the Pga Championship. She is 40. Are you already feeling old or are you expecting a decade full of competitions?

“I’m intrigued too. I have my own theory, probably bizarre, according to which every golfer lasts about 25 years. If he starts early he ends early, if he starts late he ends late. I think I am more or less halfway through. which potentially could be the best, with the right experience, but also the desire and enthusiasm that are still high “.

He arrived in shape at the right time. By chance or the result of strategy?

“I worked hard this winter to try to get ready for the season. I must say that at the beginning of the year I was playing quite well, even if I was putting up very badly. Lately I started to put up not well, but decently. Right now the long game – but I have to say that it has been like this for at least a couple of years – okay. Then golf is a strange sport in which you play well and maybe you collect little, now I am in a period in which I can collect something “.

Did you change the coach of the putt? “Yes, I started a little over a month ago with Andy Paisley. An Englishman who is the brother of a player on the European Tour. Honestly, the work is still in progress on the putt, but he gave me some ideas to work on. C ‘ it is a road, let’s say. It will take some time but now I have a bit clearer ideas about what to do “.

For some time he has been developing an app and inventing a statistics processing and study service designed to improve the performance of professional players. How is it going? “It grows, it grows. I also had to hire a person to help me. In the last few months some players from the pga tour have also joined. This week we are seven / eight players. Colleagues and customers … In the last few weeks there is someone who has already won on the European Tour. No one has won in America yet, so we hope that sooner or later we will be able to win with some of them .. “.

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Dodo Molinari and the US Open: “America, I’m back. And I’m at my best at 40!”