There is nothing normal about this year, so it's not surprising that Tiger Woods is thinking about changing up his usual preparations for the Masters.
A five-time Masters winner and the defending champ, Woods usually doesn't play the week before Augusta, but he's considering adding another tournament, possibly the Houston Open, before the Masters begins on Nov. 12.
"This entire year has been different for all of us," Woods said Tuesday after a nine-hole practice round at Sherwood Country Club in Thousand Oaks, Calif., where the relocated Zozo Championship begins Thursday. "And my run-up to Augusta is unlike anything I've ever experienced. That's just the way it is.
"The whole idea is to be ready in a few weeks and whether or not that's playing one more event, whether that's Houston or just playing here at Zozo, just making sure that I'm ready for Augusta."
Thanks to COVID-19, the Masters was postponed from April until November. Also unusual will be the missing roar of fans, like the ones who spurred Woods to victory last year.
"The fact that the Masters will be held in November, it's unprecedented, never been done before," Woods said. "I can't simulate the normal ramp-up that I normally have, and I don't think anyone else can either. It will be different for all of us.
"The fact that we have no spectators is going to be very different optically for a lot of us. It will be like how we normally play practice rounds there when we kind of go out there."
The weather at Augusta will be quite a bit cooler than the usual tee times in April. The days will also be about two hours shorter since it will not be Daylight Savings Time, meaning sundown will occur at about 5:30 p.m. ET.
"I have played there in November," Woods said, "and the few times that I have played in November, it's been the same. It's been cold, ball doesn't go very far.
"If you're able to get the north wind that time of year, it can be awfully difficult and long and very different than what we normally play in April."
--Field Level Media