Skip to main content
Part of complete coverage on

Lesson learned for Sergio Garcia after 'horrible' Tiger slur

updated 11:16 AM EST, Mon November 11, 2013
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Sergio Garcia talks to CNN's Shane O'Donoghue about "fried chicken" controversy
  • Comments made following a fractious pairing between Woods and Garcia at Players Championship
  • Spaniard says fallout was "horrible" but insists he has learned from affair

(CNN) -- Tiger Woods was whacking golf balls across a bridge in Turkey last week, but back in Spain, Sergio Garcia is still feeling the need to build them following the "fried chicken" saga earlier this year.

Speaking to CNN's Living Golf, Garcia once again struck a chord of contrition over the comments he made about the World no.1 last May.

"I didn't mean it in a bad way. When I was driving back to the hotel, I started thinking about it," Garcia told Shane O'Donoghue.

"Obviously, I didn't expect that question at all and you try to be funny and it comes out the wrong way I guess," he added.

Garcia made the comment during a private dinner at Wentworth golf club a couple of weeks after he and Woods had endured a fractious third round at the Players Championship -- the Spaniard complained that the gallery following Woods had disturbed him during a shot.

Sergio Garcia on giving back
Tiger talking Turkey!
Tiger helps Turkey make history

When asked in jest if he would be inviting Woods for dinner during the then upcoming U.S. Open, Garcia replied: "Yeah, we will have him around every night. We will serve fried chicken."

Fried chicken is a common food in the American South, but when used in reference to African-Americans can often imply a negative stereotype.

Read: Tiger Woods reveals 'nerdy' side

Fellow Ryder Cup star Graeme McDowell perhaps summed up the slip best on Twitter: "Private/humor filled environment but he (Garcia) shouldn't have said it #slip."

The remark echoed U.S. golfer Fuzzy Zoeller's infamous slur on Woods' following his maiden major win at the Masters in 1997.

"Tell him not to serve fried chicken next year," Zoeller said to reporters in an attempt to make humor of the fact that Woods was the first African-American to win the tournament. Tradition dictates that the reigning Masters champion choose the menu for the Champions Dinner the following year.

Woods tweeted that Garcia's comments were "wrong, hurtful and clearly inappropriate" and even the Spaniard's equipment makers TaylorMade weighed in calling the comments "offensive."

Garcia issued an unreserved apology via the European Tour but recoils when asked to recall the media storm that followed the jibe.

"It was horrible, but what's done is done. Everybody knows how I feel about it, so I think they should be fine with it and if not, it's kind of their problem," he said.

"The most important thing is learning from all those things.

"I'm making sure that all those experiences make you stronger, a better person and things like that. I think that I've learned from those things and I just need to keep getting better at it, and hopefully keep making people happy."

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
updated 8:51 AM EDT, Fri September 12, 2014
It's a big dilemma: Be with your wife for the birth of your first child, or stay at work and try to earn $11 million. For Billy Horschel, it's a no-brainer.
updated 7:40 AM EDT, Fri September 12, 2014
She's just 19 but Hyo Joo Kim is already showing she's ready for the big time after recording the lowest ever round at a major championship.
updated 1:06 PM EDT, Wed September 10, 2014
Masters champion Bubba Watson says winning the $10 million FedEx Cup jackpot would bring forward his retirement from the game.
updated 7:31 AM EDT, Fri September 12, 2014
EVIAN-LES-BAINS, FRANCE - SEPTEMBER 15: A view of the 14th green during the third round of The Evian Championship at the Evian Resort Golf Club on September 15, 2013 in Evian-les-Bains, France. (Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images)
The world's top women golfers will be chasing a $3.25 million prize purse at one of the most stunning courses on the LPGA Tour.
updated 8:19 AM EDT, Wed September 3, 2014
Tom Watson selects Keegan Bradley, Hunter Mahan and Webb Simpson as his wildcard picks for the Ryder Cup contest with Europe.
updated 9:52 AM EDT, Tue September 2, 2014
Ian Poulter kept Europe clinging on in their Ryder Cup battle with the United States in Chicago.
Ian Poulter, who has constantly haunted the U.S. in Ryder Cup golf, is back after being chosen as a wildcard by European captain Paul McGinley.
updated 11:40 AM EDT, Mon August 25, 2014
Tiger Woods has split with his longtime coach Sean Foley after not winning a major during their four-year tenure.
updated 7:05 AM EDT, Mon August 11, 2014
Success just keeps on coming for Rory McIlroy, but the world No. 1 is already targeting more titles following his second PGA Championship win.
updated 10:24 AM EDT, Fri August 8, 2014
From Seve's "spine-shivering" moment to Jack Nicklaus' "perfect explosion," David Cannon has captured many of golf's defining images.
updated 9:20 AM EDT, Thu August 7, 2014
They came home as casualties of war -- physically shattered and mentally broken. But golf is proving to be an unlikely salvation for U.S. veterans.
updated 8:31 AM EDT, Tue August 5, 2014
You are the one hitting the shots, but the man standing over your shoulder could hold the key to your golfing destiny.
updated 8:27 AM EDT, Mon July 21, 2014
PINEHURST, NC - JUNE 10: Rory McIlroy (R) of Northern Ireland talks with his dad Gerry McIlroy (L) during a practice round prior to the start of the 114th U.S. Open at Pinehurst Resort & Country Club, Course No. 2 on June 10, 2014 in Pinehurst, North Carolina. (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
He has been there for all three of his son's major wins, but the latest triumph may well have been the sweetest yet for Rory McIlroy's father.
ADVERTISEMENT