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Interview With 2003 PGA Champion Shaun Micheel

JULIUS MASON: Ladies and gentlemen, Shaun Micheel, PGA Champion.

Shaun, some opening thoughts, please. We'd like to hear a little bit of emotion, and we'll go through your card.

SHAUN MICHEEL: I don't think there's much left. I spit it out there in the rough. It's all in the golf course.

First of all, I really can't believe that this happened to me. I showed up here on Tuesday to play a practice round and saw how difficult this golf course was. And after last week, I just was trying to make the cut. I know that sounds pretty simple, but really, that was my main goal, and I probably would have been happy with that.

As I got going, and I started playing a little bit better -- although I didn't play particularly well today, but I managed to hang on, and thank goodness for a short game.

I just totally lost my train of thought, so, anyway, bear with me today.

JULIUS MASON: That's the kind of stuff we're looking for. That's good.

SHAUN MICHEEL: As I said, as the week went on, and the days, I started striking the ball a little bit better. I was thinking really well out there. I knew how tough the golf course was and I didn't think anybody was going to hit 14 out of 14 fairways or 18 out of 18 greens. I just knew that as long as I could maybe make a few birdies and try to keep the ball in the fairway, which I couldn't seem to do, that I was going to have a pretty good chance.

When Chad made that putt on the par 3 there, it sure changed my perspective, really. I was pretty confident after making birdie on 14. So I really kind of had to bear down. When he missed the fairway on 16, it wasn't really a sigh of relief, but I was pretty excited when that putt on 16 went in for me.

I guess, you know, I'll try to be a little bit more descriptive today about my round.

Finally, I hit the fairway off the tee on No. 1. That was key. I hit a 3-wood off the tee. That's a very tough shot for me, a right-to-left hole with a left-to-right wind. That's always been just a really difficult shot for me. I had a nice, comfortable 6-iron into the green. It was just a shot that I was just trying to get onto the green, in the middle of the green, just to kind of get my day going, really. Had a nice yardage. I was able to make a nice, smooth swing and it went the perfect distance.

As I've been doing all week, I made more long putts this week than I could really remember in a long time. Ultimately, I think anybody will tell you that winning a golf tournament, particularly a major championship, you've got to make putts. You've got to make all of your short par putts, which I did, with the exception of the par 3. I think that was maybe -- I think that was my second 3-putt. I 3-putted that hole both days.

No. 2, Chad and I both missed the fairway. I don't really like that tee shot, either. There's a tree that kind of hangs over the edge, and just trying to hit a 4-iron out there in the fairway to leave me a pitching wedge in. Unfortunately, I had to pitch out, I had about 120 yards with a middle wedge, which is actually 52 degrees. I hit it about ten feet and thought I made the putt but just slid by. So it was kind of a birdie, bogey start but that was okay. I was feeling okay at that point.

Actually, the big hole for me was 4, trying to get that ball in the fairway. I think I hit it just through the fairway in the first cut.

No. 6, again, I had a perfect yardage on the par 3. I don't recall what it was, maybe 170 yards or so, 175 yards, and it was downwind. It was just a perfect 8-iron. I did pull it just a little. I left myself a pretty difficult putt, even though it was only four and a half feet. I really studied that one pretty hard.

Next hole, I don't normally tee up my 5-wood. I normally just throw it on the ground. There was a little wind in my face and that club has a tendency to get up in the air pretty quickly. I just got ahead of it just a little bit and I took a divot. I don't mind taking divots but it just was not a pretty shot. That left me nothing but a lay-up there. You hit in that rough, there's nothing but lay-ups there, depending on the hole and the wind direction. I pitched out there and actually made a great 2-putt. I was so happy to 2-putt, that was probably 40 or 50 feet, with about 15, 20 feet of break.

No. 8, I had no idea what happened there. I hit the ball dead-center of the club face. My tee mark was right down the center of the face and it just went left. I don't know what else to say.

You know, I knew I was going to be in trouble over there, but I was just trying to find a way to get back to the fairway and I couldn't do it, so I was happy just to get that ball on to the green. I think I had a 7-iron from -- it was 160 yards to the front out of the rough.

Everything was kind of pars, and I was missing some fairways, missing some greens, but I was chipping the ball very well, positioning my ball around the green pretty well to give myself an opportunity to get the ball up-and-down.

Finally came to 14, and you really have to hit driver there. I hit it over the green there, just over the green on Friday and I made double, after laying up. I felt pretty good with the driver there. I hit it on the green and probably had 35 feet and I left it eight feet short. I just totally misjudged the speed. Actually, making the putt, that was a little more pressure on myself I thought because Chad's ball, I know he had a tough shot in the bunker. That's a long bunker shot, but when his ball hit that green, I thought he was going to go over the green. When it hit the flag and stopped four feet from the hole, that made my 2-putt a little bit more difficult, at least in my mind. I felt really good over that putt making that good stroke.

Then 15, just tried to hit it in the middle of the green. Unless you've been out there, I played eight feet of break and I needed to play 15, as you saw. That was not a good putt. It was just, I couldn't trust myself to start it up by the fringe for some reason because I felt like it might actually break towards the back of the green. And when he made that putt there, I knew that I was going to be in for a tough last three holes. Because sometimes you just need a putt to drop here or there, and when he got that putt to go in, I thought, well, I'm going to have to suck it up.

16, Chad hits it just to the left and I hit it right in typical fashion as I did yesterday. I was fortunate that -- as I said, certain holes, if you do miss the fairway and the wind is in a certain direction, you can get the ball on the green. Normally I might hit a 3-wood on that hole but the rough is so deep that the farther you hit the ball down there, I think that that just makes it a lot easier. I had a wedge into the green. I think I had 130 yards to the front. Somehow, the two times that I was in the rough on 12 and on that particular hole, the grass was growing towards the green, and you've got to have that. Just a pretty aggressive putt, actually. I had it read right. I watched Chad's and it broke a little to the right but from 30, 35 feet, picking the right line is very difficult.

17, I was just trying to hit a cut shot out there. That's really -- my shot is kind of a low cut but I hit it just a little bit towards the toe which got it turned over a little bit. I saw it bounce into the rough, and from there I knew that pin -- at least the pin was in the back; that when I laid up, I think I had 134 yards or so to the pin, and pulled that shot. So now I'm left with a 35-foot 2-putt. I'm still away, Chad is laying in two for birdie and he's just made a pretty good putt on the par 3 so I'm thinking now he is probably going to make his putt. Felt great about the 2-putt.

18, the same. I just tried to trust my swing. I tried to hit that cut and hit it dead straight. From what it looked like from the tee, it got a pretty nice bounce. Could have probably bounced left or maybe even straight and gone into the primary cut, but it got just enough of a bounce right and it's just long enough through that thru area that driver was okay for me. The ball was sitting up. The first cut of the rough this week, the ball just sits up magnificently. It's in great condition.

So outside of the fairway, I was in a pretty good spot there. I know Chad had a really good angle to the pin. I had 161 yards to the front, a little bit into the wind a little bit left-to-right with a perfect lie. I hit that just normal. It was an absolutely perfect, perfect number. And to hit the ball two inches from the hole, I knew it was pretty close. I had asked somebody how close it was and they weren't paying attention or didn't really care to tell me, which is fine with me. I saw it was only two inches; I figured I could make that one.

I don't know what else to say. I'm just thrilled to be the champion here in New York. It was a very difficult day emotionally for me. I'm looking at a lot of squares on my card, which I know that I turned out to be the champion, I shot the lowest score, but inside, I'm wishing that I could have played a little bit better.

I said yesterday that I wanted to play -- I wanted Chad and I to play some quality golf, for the fans, and everybody kept yelling at me to hit it in the fairway. Well, I was trying to but I just couldn't do it. Always a good way to finish, with a birdie and I'm going to think about those things.

JULIUS MASON: Very good.

Q. Assuming that this is No. 1, what was the previous clutch shot of your life before today?

SHAUN MICHEEL: Well, I can remember winning my first on the Nationwide Tour, the Nike Tour back then and Gary Willis and I were battling down the stretch. I had a 9-iron or something like that into the green that I hit 15 feet. I don't really know why that one stands out, I guess maybe because that was my first -- well, besides the Singapore Open, was really my first win over here of any significance, at least in my mind, anyway. There may be some other shots that I can think of.

Actually, I don't typically birdie the last hole. I seem to struggle for some reason coming down the stretch, but I hit -- there is one shot now that I think about. Playing the Hooters Tour, the TC Jordan Tour, I holed a 6-iron on the last hole to make the cut. That was probably the best shot as far as finishing.

Like I said, I don't normally close very well. I don't know why that is. Maybe just nerves, maybe I'm tired or maybe I'm trying to get the round over with, but I sure like the way I finished today.

Q. Do you remember what course?

SHAUN MICHEEL: No, I don't. I just remember it was a 6-iron. Good shots, they stick with you.

Q. Speaking of great shots, there's a lot of great shots in the history of major championships and the newer ones are replayed over and over again on TV. What shot out of that kind of group -- yours will join that list -- is there any shot or shots that stand out in your mind, like how did he do that?

SHAUN MICHEEL: As far as winning a golf tournament, I remember Hale Irwin's putt to win I think it was at Medinah when he beat Mike Donald. That one stands out.

As far as a shot that really sticks out, there are several. I played in the Canadian Open a couple of years ago and Tiger Woods shot a second shot over that water at the Canadian Open at Glen Abbey. That's one of the best shots I've ever seen, because I actually played -- I think I finished 10th that week, so I can relate.

His 3-iron that he hit -- and they have played that over and over. I think they have it on Tiger's "Favorite Ten Shots" or something on the Golf Channel. That shot he hit out of the bunker last year at Hazeltine over those trees in the wind; that shot just seems to stick out in my mind.

As far as finishing major championships, what Ben Curtis did, making that 10-, 12-footer on the last hole this year. The other two majors -- well, Mike's win was won by his putter. And Jim, he had a pretty unassuming win at the U.S. Open. But I don't really recall too many great shots that won tournaments on the 18th hole. I'm sure Mr. Nicklaus probably holed his share of putts on 18 like he always has. And I'm not a great historian on golf, I apologize, but I just can't think of too many right now.

Q. What club did you hit on 18, the approach?

SHAUN MICHEEL: I hit a 7-iron. I think I had -- I can give you an exact. I had 162 and 13, so I had 175 to the hole.

Q. Are you playing in the Canadian Open again?

SHAUN MICHEEL: I'm not.

Q. Can you talk about your nerves last night and how were you feeling this morning?

SHAUN MICHEEL: I was okay this morning. Maybe I was a little more stir crazy today because I knew what I went through yesterday. Trying to kill -- I don't sleep that well, really, on a normal basis. My dog usually gets me up pretty early.

Like I said, I knew what I had in store for me today. I woke up at 7:30 or something like that, was stirring around, trying not to think of golf. And so it was a pretty difficult morning, actually. I had some oatmeal for breakfast and got about three bites taken out of it. I just had a lot of anxiety today and just a lot of anticipation.

I said this yesterday, that any one of us, I think the fear of the unknown frightens all of us, and I certainly had that today. Even though I am a PGA Champion, I don't know what's out there in store, I really don't. I hope to have some guidance. I know that Rich Beem has spoken about someone giving him a manual on how to handle things, and I just hope that I can represent the PGA, the PGA of America in a professional and very humble manner.

Q. You talked about the physical toll this golf course takes in the hole-by-hole. Can you kind of run through an emotional hole-by-hole, how you handled it throughout the day?

SHAUN MICHEEL: You know, the first tee shot for anyone, I think really doesn't matter what tournament it is. It just makes it -- the first hole, the first tee shot for me seems to be critical. I don't like that tee shot with the way the wind direction was blowing today. I just don't like that. It doesn't matter what golf course I'm playing. I'm just not comfortable with a left-to-right wind on a right-to-left hole.

When I got that ball in the fairway I felt like I was going to do something. Maybe I should have hit a few more 3-woods off the tee out there, because when I did hit the 3-wood I seemed to hit the fairway and maybe that's something I will take away from today.

So there was a lot, there really was. You can look at my card: Birdie, bogey, par, par, par, birdie, bogey, bogey -- you can see that it was like that. I was trying to hit shots, but, you know, a lot of that was the pin positions, the pins were very difficult today. The fairways were just as wide as they were yesterday or Friday or Thursday. I just couldn't seem to find them. I don't know why. And that part of it was really taking it's toll and I was getting frustrated because I was so used to hitting the fairways that I just -- I knew that if I missed the fairway, I wasn't going to win the tournament.

Chad didn't make enough birdies, really, to offset some of his good shots, and I was fortunate to kind of hang around and make a few putts at the critical time.

For all of the poor drives I hit, I made up with my putter, and that's probably the biggest thing for me today.

Q. Obviously Oak Hill has got a lot of lore, a lot of history, all of those great names and now your name and your face is going to be on that wall forever. Obviously it's kind of quick here, but have you even thought about the magnitude of what just happened an hour ago?

SHAUN MICHEEL: No. I haven't. My wife and I were in the contestant's lounge just about every day and I noticed Dr. Middlecoff, his picture was up there and he was also a Memphian. We went to the same high school and actually I didn't really catch onto that story until recently.

It's kind of scary, really. I was trying to win the B.C. Open a year ago at this time trying to keep my card, and even up till maybe a month or two ago, I was trying to keep my card. To have my name on that trophy, I don't really know what I'm thinking right now. I look down that list right there and see all the names, but I just hope that maybe I can produce a career like a lot of those guys have.

Q. Let me ask you this: How much did your aggressive approach to getting three bogeys on the last holes yesterday toughen you or mature you for the end results today?

SHAUN MICHEEL: Well, I told Stephanie today, or it must have been last night, I think she could see the disappointment in my eyes and my voice, because I was extremely disappointed with my finish yesterday. I didn't choke, I didn't do anything, I just missed the fairways, that's all I did. I missed them far enough to where I couldn't recover.

So, that really warned me today. I got a chance last night to hit a few golf balls after being in here. I thought I had my nice little fade going out there on the range, and even today, I hit the ball very well on the range. But as far as in toughening me up, I think it scared me more than anything else, because I knew that I could not afford to do that today.

You know, I'm obviously going to have to work on my driver. It did not prepare me for anything; it's just what happened. And I want it to happen. I don't like to hit my driver in the rough; no one does. It was something that happened and I had to try to get over it and I think I did okay.

Q. Even though the 7-iron, you were under as much pressure as possible, because of the way it was setting up on the first cut, because it was the perfect number, did you just know that you were going to hit it that well? And then again, what were you going through emotionally as the ball was headed towards that hill? I know you said, "Be right."

SHAUN MICHEEL: I was more concerned -- I knew it was a perfect yardage. I was just more concerned with hitting the ball solid. I certainly had a line picked out, a direction that I wanted the ball to go and where I wanted to end up. It was not next to the hole, I can assure you. I'm very happy that that's where it ended up. I was aimed just a little bit to the right of that. I figured that anything to the right or anything a little bit long would still give me an opportunity to play a shot, make par. And again, I guess I was thinking par.

Maybe I don't give myself enough credit, but, yes, when that ball is in the air, all I was asking for was just to carry it to the front of the green. I didn't care if it hit on the green and bounced 15 feet by or came up 15 feet short. My main focus was to hit the ball solid and I was going to do anything I could to do that.

I think I made a pretty good swing.

Q. You said you had to hit driver on 14; why, and had you tried to drive the green in the other three rounds?

SHAUN MICHEEL: I did yesterday. I hit driver yesterday.

As the tournament went on, I gained a little bit more experience on what was around the green, where there were holes that I could maybe be a little bit more aggressive on. I laid up the first two days. I think I did birdie it one day and one day I hit double, I hit it just over the back to the back pin. I just felt like in order to -- I just felt like I needed to make a birdie there. I hit a nice tee shot on No. 9, which was the last time that I had hit a driver and I hit it really well.

I thought, well, you know what, I'm just going to do it again. Chad hit driver, made the aggressive play, and I figure, you know, if I get it up and it doesn't get on the green, I can make a pitch to the green. I can make a pitch to that pin. I wasn't going to short-side myself. I knew there was no way I could knock it over and then I was going to have a downhill chip.

But what I was afraid of, is that if I mis-hit a 5-iron and it goes into the rough, well, now I'm going to bring long into play if -- you've got an uphill shot that plays an extra 10 to 12 yards in distance and I was afraid that if I was too aggressive trying to fly it up on the top shelf that it might skip over and I was going to have that shot. I would have much rather driven it out to the bunker and clutched it out on to the green and 2-putted rather than try to hit that shot up that hill.

Q. You mentioned a lot of things that you thought you could have done better today. You seem genuinely surprised to be up there; are you?

SHAUN MICHEEL: Maybe a little. I felt like it was starting to slip away from me on No. 8 because I had hit that fairway every day, and that fairway to me sets up so nice, I mean, visually. When I mis-hit that, I was really getting kind of dejected, because the driver for me is typically a pretty straight club.

Of course I'm surprised. I did not look at the leaderboard one time, I don't think, until 18. And that was probably -- that probably helped me. I don't really -- I don't know what anyone shot today other than Chad, and that's probably a good thing. But I'm very surprised to be up here. Like I said, I've been to a lot of places. My first couple of years on TOUR, I was just trying to keep my card. I was just trying to survive. I've started to come into my own a little bit towards the end, and my mental -- actually I think I hit the ball better a few years ago, but I'm able to put aside the bad shots a little better than I used to be able to do and I think that's ultimately what carried me through today, because, of course, I would have liked to have gone out and hit four fairways.

But look at my stats; that's just not my game. I don't drive the ball poorly, but it started to slip away. I tried not to let myself think about it. I thought when I had that three-shot lead over Chad that it was pretty much done, and he makes birdie and I make bogey and it just goes to show you, never get ahead of yourself. Always expect your opponent to come back at you.

Q. You come to 18 with all of the pressure, one-shot lead, you hit one of the great shots of the tournament and then you have to come up and stand there and wait, wait for everything to get done to tap out. What is going through your mind; just waiting to go tap out and win the tournament?

SHAUN MICHEEL: I was so thankful that the day was over. I was really leaking oil coming down the stretch. I felt bad for Chad. I think that he felt -- and I certainly would have -- that after parring 17 and me bogeying 17 and him to getting within one again, that he really was looking to get into a playoff. So when I hit that ball up there, and walked up and actually saw how close it was, a whole range of emotions came through.

I said this one of the first days, that people rate their careers on how many majors they win, and I was just happy to have won any PGA Tour event. A lot of that was coming to me, the B.C. open, that tournament, not closing the deal, was probably the first thing that came to my mind, besides my family and my wife, because I knew I couldn't miss that putt. It was a great feeling.

I wanted Chad to make his putt. I was really glad that he made his second putt. I looked up at the board and I think Tim Clark had finished -- I may be wrong, but finished at 1-under. If Chad misses that second one -- because I know he was disappointed when I hit that ball really close because I really felt like he had a great angle into that green. Like I said, I was happy for him that he got that putt in the hole and finished second alone. I was even more thrilled that I didn't have to work too hard on my putt.

Q. There's a lot of pressure that comes along with playing in the final pairing on the final day of a major, especially for a guy doing it for the first time. But it really didn't seem to faze you at all; why was that not a factor today?

SHAUN MICHEEL: I think the pairing had a lot to do with it. I can be honest and say that had I been paired with Tiger -- and I've played with Tiger one time, and he is an intimidating man. We are all out here trying to do the same job, but I know that people want him to win. Maybe I'm a feel-good story, I don't know. But the pairing yesterday with Billy, really helped me because he was very encouraging. I mean, he's been out here a long time and has won some events, and for him to push me along like he did even though he was trying to win the golf tournament, really meant a lot to me.

Now, Chad and I today, we had some nice conversation out there. I didn't see him as often as I would have liked because he was down the middle and I was off doing something else in the high stuff. I think we both benefitted from that pairing. We're both Cleveland staff players, we both have played with one another a few times. That helped me.

Like I said, had I been paired with Mike who has already got a major under his belt and going for Player of the Year, that probably would have been more difficult. So I think I was blessed with my pairing.

You know, not that I'm going to run away and be shy about my pairing if I get paired with Tiger Woods in the last day of a major championship, but I just think that it made it easier on me.

Q. You said that you were thinking about Chad all day and you didn't look at the leaderboard. Was your strategy to go into the final round as a match-play, the two of you going at it head-to-head?

SHAUN MICHEEL: I think so. As much as I didn't look at the leaderboard, I paid attention to the roars in front of me. We did get a little bit behind and we were told to speed up on a couple of holes, but heck, that's because, you know, I was all over the place.

I didn't look at the board, but I was listening to what was going on in front of me. The crowd tells you an awful lot, just like it told me on the last hole that I was pretty close. I didn't realize I was that close.

Yeah, probably. Probably felt like it was a match-play situation. Maybe I should pay attention to the board more. It seemed to work today.

Q. You just won the PGA Championship and you come in here and you talk about how you wish you -- you start beating yourself up about how you wish you played better today. Why don't you talk about what kind of -- how you conquered yourself and why you think you were able to do that this week, because it sounds like you've spent a career battling yourself.

SHAUN MICHEEL: I think most of us will say that that's -- I mean, I can't really control what anyone else is doing. I've had a lot of tournaments where something negative just creeps into my head at the wrong time, and it's amazing -- you think the word "3-putt," and next thing you know, you've got a 6- or 7-footer and you 3-putt the hole. I just wish that I could turn that around into something positive. I wish I could think, wow, I'm going to make this putt, and actually make it.

I always seem to battle myself. Golf, it's a very difficult game. There's nothing I can do to anyone else. I know my strengths and my weaknesses. I was trying my hardest to play to them today. I feel like, I think my way around the golf course very well. I may not be the most patient person, but at least I kind of plot my way around the golf course; I strategize a lot.

I think that you can look back in history, the major champions, the guys that win the majors, they play golf a certain way. And maybe that's why they don't win 20 regular tour events where it takes 20-under to win. I seem to play to the fairway and I play to the middle of the green, and some tournaments, you just can't do that. You cannot do that at the Bob Hope Chrysler Classic where it takes 30-under to win, and those are not good tournaments for me. But I just always seem to battle. Anybody would probably tell you that. You always are afraid you're going to blow it, and I didn't want to do that.

Someone yelled at me today, that I didn't want to pull a Jean Van de Velde. I was surprised he could even pronounce his name. (Laughter.) That was kind of irritating, actually. I kind of put that behind me and went on.

We all battle that. I felt for him when he did that. I'm sure he wishes he could do things differently. And to birdie the last hole of a major championship shows that at least I have the mental fortitude to just forge ahead and get the job done and I did that.

Q. You won a major, that of the four has the strongest field of all the majors. You slept on the lead, or part of it for three nights, and you had, I think ten or 11 previous major champions and guys in the Top-10 that made the cut. At any point during the last two days did you look at a leader board and wonder, "Where is everybody?"

SHAUN MICHEEL: No. I watched the coverage just like everyone else did. On Thursday afternoon after I finished I went home and watched the golf. On Friday when I teed off at 2:25, I watched the golf. I was studying the golf course. I did that yesterday and I did that today. That was one of the benefits of playing late, the coverage came on at 11:00. I got a chance to watch what the wind was doing, maybe what some of the guys were doing on the scoreboard. Nobody was doing anything this morning, unlike yesterday. I think Hal had gone out 4-under early. I got a lot of good-luck wishes from a lot of the guys before I played. Of course, we all have our selfish part of us that we want to win, but everyone was pretty -- they were great to me, actually.

But as far as looking at the leaderboard and wondering who is going to make a charge, you can't do that on this golf course. I thought Chad's round yesterday was phenomenal. I had a great round going yesterday until the last three holes. I wasn't really too concerned that there was going to be somebody coming from behind. I was more trying to pay a little bit more attention to what I was doing so that I didn't back up. I just wanted to kind of hang around the last nine holes, and I did that, and tried to make a few birdies. I just knew nobody was going to come-from-behind.

Q. For those of us who live in Rochester, New York, your accomplishment culminates six years of anticipation and excitement from the first day we learned that Oak Hill was going to host another major golf he event. Could you address the golf fans of Rochester and Western New York and leave us with some closing thoughts on Oak Hill Country Club?

SHAUN MICHEEL: I was not fortunate enough to qualify for the tournament at Bethpage last year. I know that New Yorkers, they love golf. I was a little unnerved, or a little uneasy about how I was going to be accepted. I feel like I was cemented and I feel like Chad was accepted into your community.

Outside of the one gentleman today that yelled what he yelled to me at 17, everyone was cheering for me. They were cheering for Chad. I think we were just genuinely happy that one of us was going to win. I heard several times that fans were happy about some up-and-comers, "Way to go," and that made me feel real nice. I felt great and I felt very much at home.

As far as the golf course goes, there are certain holes out there that I don't particularly like. I think you could ask that of anybody. The golf course is very difficult. I think that sometimes course setup, I'd be interested in knowing why they set the course up a certain way.

I think particularly No. 7, not playing here when there's no rough, I think that that fairway could come a little bit more to the left. It makes too much of a dogleg. There's no dogleg there, but the way they mow it, it makes it a dogleg. I wasn't a big fan of that real hole, really, all week.

But I loved the golf course. I thought the green speed was perfect. There were some putts that maybe you could get away from you. The greens are fair. I think courses, like Pinehurst, make it so challenging, even when you pitch the ball out in the fairway from the rough. Here, you can position your ball on to the green where you have a chance; you're not having to play ten feet of break.

I love this golf course. Not just because I won, but just because I felt like, if you made a mistake off the tee, you could get the ball back in play and get it on to the green. The greens were large enough, and they were receptive enough that they would accept nice shots into the green.

Outside of that, the fans of New York were great. They were cheering me on all the way. I know they were cheering Chad on, and I'm very thankful for them.

JULIUS MASON: Thanks very much, ladies and gentlemen.

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