There are other signs that Strange is slowly recovering from his Ryder Cup hangover. Disheartened after Oak Hill, Strange said that he was tired of trying to correct a fatal flaw in his swing. Now he says that was just something that popped out in a moment of frustration. Now he talks about playing in the next Ryder Cup, serving as captain of the team in 1999 at The Country Club, and staying on Tour for another 10 years, right up to the time he joins the Senior tour.
Those who know him best are not surprised.
"Certainly what he went through at the Ryder Cup is a tough experience, but he didn't get to where he has been by rolling over and playing dead," says Tom Kite. "It would shock me if he did now. Obviously he's got two choices. He can say, 'Well, that was more than I can handle' and roll over. Or he can say, 'This is going to make me a better player.' "
If Allen Strange knows his brother, there's no question which route Curtis will take.
"I don't think this changes him at all," Allen says. "He's pretty stubborn about it. I don't think this changes his practice habits or his desire or his ambition. God forbid his accomplishments are forgotten because of one match. He's been awfully successful over the years. The Ryder Cup can't destroy that. He's a pretty hard and coarse son of a gun when he needs to be."