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March 21, 2015

Jason Kokrak


JOHN BUSH:テつ We'd like to welcome Jason Kokrak into the Interview Room after a bogey-free 7-under par 65.テつ Making his 3rd start at the Arnold Palmer Invitational and coming off of a 4th place finish here last year.
Tremendous round out there today.テつ Get some comments.
JASON KOKRAK:テつ You know, it was a fun day out there.テつ Anytime you get a bogey-free round out here on Tour, especially around a tough golf course like this -- I know the conditions are a little bit soft but, you know, they are few and far for me.テつ Hit the irons great.テつ Got off to a good day.テつ Looking forward to moment.
JOHN BUSH:テつ Built some momentum last week in Tampa.テつ Tied for 7th played.テつ Talk a little bit about it, about your game right now.
JASON KOKRAK:テつ Callaway has got a great driver in my hands, different irons than I started the year off with.テつ Got those dialed in this week and last week.テつ Last week played really tough with the swirling winds but played solid golf and this week, you know, if I can hit more fairways and hit the greens, we're rolling that putter that I got from Odyssey pretty well.
JOHN BUSH:テつ We'll pass the microphone around.

Q.テつ How tough is it to change irons mid-season?テつ Most people wait until the end of the year unless they're having a real problem.テつ What was the wrong with the ones you had and what are these doing right?
JASON KOKRAK:テつ The other ones I had were very similar to my old irons that I had from Cleveland.テつ So, it was just an easy change look-wise but there's just a little bit too much movement on the golf ball from left to right and right to left.
There's less movement with these irons that I have now so I just feel more comfortable with them.テつ They got a little bit more of a flange on the bottom.テつ The divots aren't nearly as deep.

Q.テつ Moving day you talked about it.
Are you watching the scored board on moving day to see who else is moving and who has stopped?テつ You kind of want to take note of where you are and what you're doing?
JASON KOKRAK:テつ I know I have some of the best players in the world behind me and I don't expect to go into tomorrow with the lead but I put myself in great position to make a run on Sunday and, you know, if I can stick to my guns and hit quality iron shots and roll the rock the way I have been we'll definitely have a fun day tomorrow.

Q.テつ What is it like when the four of you even teed off you see how many people have shot really low numbers?
JASON KOKRAK:テつ You know, you look at what the lower scores out there so you know it's out there but there's some great scores yesterday.テつ You know, friend of mine, Danny Lee, shot 8 under par.
The golf course it's out there, you know, you can play some aggressive golf with softer greens but, you know, I expect tomorrow the greens to be even a little bit firmer and faster.テつ You always have to make adjustments going into Sunday but you know the game kind of stays the same, hit it inside of 20 feet and try to make it.

Q.テつ What did you learn from the experience last year of having a chance coming down the stretch?
JASON KOKRAK:テつ I think just putting myself in that position over and over again.テつ You know, I can recall on different things, you know, the feelings I have I know I get a little bit jacked up coming down the stretch so I know to hit the irons a little bit further.
I can play -- it's tough to play.テつ I thought the 8-iron would be perfect and I flew it to the back of the green.テつ I obviously know I'm going to be a little jacked up.テつ You got to -- just limit the mental mistakes out there.

Q.テつ Did you draw upon or will you draw upon what you saw last year from Matt playing along side on Sunday?
JASON KOKRAK:テつ Yeah, absolutely.テつ You know, I played along side on Sunday.テつ He played great golf.テつ I played pretty solid right next to him but he got the putter hot middle of the round and just made everything.テつ So, one of those things that's out here on Tour, it's a putting contest.テつ Most of the guys hit it pretty well but if I can limit the mistakes and make a few putts, you know, I expect to be 16, 17, 18 coming down the stretch.

Q.テつ Did you take to this course right away the first time you played it?テつ Did you have to adjust your game or is this a case of if you're playing well doesn't matter what the course is?
JASON KOKRAK:テつ Yeah, I think, you know, obviously some courses fit my eye and some don't.テつ Arnie's place, little bit special so I get good vibes coming into this tournament but I think if you're playing well you're playing well, doesn't matter the golf course you're going to play.テつ Everybody can adapt and Tour professionals can all play golf, you know, at any golf course any day.

Q.テつ You referenced it before but how is tomorrow going to be not only going for the win but trying to fend off two of the top 3 players in the world?
JASON KOKRAK:テつ I've been paired with a couple of those guys, you know.テつ I just got to stick to my game.テつ It's golf.テつ You're hitting in the fairway and 3-wood, stick to your game plan.
I'm going to make birdies, they're going the make birdies and it's just one of those things, I just try to make the best of it.テつ You know, I know the crowds are going to be a little bit better if I get paired with Rory or Stenson or whoever.テつ The game plan stays the same.

Q.テつ What do you think has held you back from winning to this point?
JASON KOKRAK:テつ You know what, I don't know.テつ Just I guess the confidence to know that I can win out here, you know.テつ It didn't take me very long to win on the Web.com Tour but out here everybody is -- everybody can win.
These guys are the best players in the world and I'm just thankful and blessed to be out here and given the opportunity to play everyday.

Q.テつ What's the confidence level like coming from off of a Top-10 last week to a place where you played so well last year?
JASON KOKRAK:テつ I think it's just, you know, knowing that I can just step up there with whatever iron it is or driver, I know the shot shape and I've got it pretty dialed in.
You know, it comes and goes.テつ It's not the same every week but I feel good about the irons.テつ The putter is -- I'm rolling it great and I expect to keep rolling them in.
JOHN BUSH:テつ Anything else?

Q.テつ After watching you play last week, your speed, ball speed 180 to 189, impressive.
The top players you have played with, do you consider yourself a Top-5 percent of the long hitters or do you have anybody that you say, "This guy I can't keep up with", anybody on the PGA TOUR?
JASON KOKRAK:テつ I get that question all the time.テつ When I'm out here on Tour I'm not swinging for the fences.テつ I can get the ball speed up to 189, 190.テつ I don't know if I'm losing where the ball is going to go.
I hit the ball plenty far enough, 300, 320, that's plenty far enough to play with these golf courses.テつ I just know that I can gear up, another gear and carry a bunker whenever I need to.
I tell everybody that you know, those guys like Gary Woodland, Tony Finau, all the long ball hitters, if they hit one good, they hit it further.テつ If I hit one good, I hit it further.

Q.テつ Was there a set of birdies, key putt or shot that sticks out in your mind that was the highlight of your round?
JASON KOKRAK:テつ I probably say the putt on 16 was probably, you know, a big putt.テつ I had a great round going and I think that topped it off.
I hit it -- I hit good shots on 18, I hit a good one in there, just went a little bit long.テつ You know, it's not what I have drawn up because I'm a long ball hitter, I probably would have only had 8, 9-iron with the fairway.テつ Just knock it in the bunker, would have gone for the green.テつ Laid it up.テつ Wedge didn't spin as I thought it was going to.
If I land it in the hill it could spin in the water.テつ Guarding a little bit against that.テつ Rolled it well all day long.テつ It was a good putt to make and confidence booster to know that I am rolling it really well.
JOHN BUSH:テつ Jason best of luck tomorrow.

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