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August 7, 2015

Zach Johnson


Q. First time back in the saddle after The Open Championship, champion golfer of the world, how does it feel?
ZACH JOHNSON: It feels good. I mean, both, actually. Getting back in the saddle feels good just to get out there and compete again. Clearly, having that title, as you mentioned, is a good feeling as well. So I feel good about things. A little rusty the first couple of days, but my short game has actually been okay, and that's really something you've got to have out here at the Firestone.

Q. I think that's the beauty of the golf course is the fact that you can go out and shoot a couple of 70s, but yet no one's going to actually run away from you.
ZACH JOHNSON: That's exactly right, especially in these conditions. Fairways are hard to hit. Greens are firm. It's hard to hit a the ball close and see a lot of wedges in your hand. It's a beautiful test. It's good when it's wet. It's good when it's firm. That's why it's one of the most popular and certainly the favorite among all the -- it's a favorite of mine and my peers.

Q. You're one of the best drivers on the PGA Tour. Is this one of the toughest golf courses with all the slopes and the speed of the fairways?
ZACH JOHNSON: Without a question. I struggled so much yesterday on the front nine. I didn't hit a driver on the fairway until the 10th hole. But it exposes you. That's the beauty of it. If you're playing well, you'll rise to the top. If you're not playing well, it's going to eat you up. Certainly, as a competitor and a player, that's what you want. It separates the field nicely.

Q. Consecutive rounds of 70. How do you feel about this one?
ZACH JOHNSON: I probably played a little better today than I did yesterday. Granted, I did have some nice saves. My driver was once again okay. It was good at the end. I probably left a couple out there and had some good putts at the end that just didn't drop. When you miss a three-footer on the last hole, it always becomes sour. All in all pretty solid. It wasn't a flashy scorecard, but on this golf course, it's just a tough test.

Q. Talk about good saves. (Inaudible) it looked suspiciously like a --
ZACH JOHNSON: That might have been a lateral. I was standing on a root. There was a root near the ball. I wish I could say, but I don't think it was. The next shot --

Q. Occasionally, I like to make you guys suffer.
ZACH JOHNSON: I hear you. It was a really, really poor shot.

Q. We're going to talk about some nice things too. The victory at St. Andrews, obviously fantastic for you. Having had a couple of weeks to absorb it and looking at the names on the trophy and having added yours, describe the sense of achievement.
ZACH JOHNSON: It's hard to put into words. It's one of those things I'm still on cloud nine. I'm still pinching myself. I'm still reminiscing and soaking it all in because the history, the tradition, certainly the gentleman that paved the way for all of us there, it just -- all those feelings and emotions. It's starting to hit me, but yet I'm not so sure it has.

Q. We're used to players posting pictures and drinking various things from the Claret Jug. Explain this one.
ZACH JOHNSON: This is an idea by my wife. I'm from the state of Iowa, and outside of corn, we have a lot of soy bean. There's not a whole lot going on. Back home, this is a big deal. It's sweet corn on the cob. It's a staged picture. I didn't eat it. I don't even think that corn was cooked. It's just one of those things, we just figured, you know what, why not have fun? That was a brief moment. There's only been beverages in that jug.

Q. What sort of beverages have you had?
ZACH JOHNSON: Where do you start? Where do you end? Essentially everything. Everything from water to you name it.

Q. Very well deserved championship. The nice guys do win. Congratulations on being champion golfer of the year.
ZACH JOHNSON: Thank you very much.
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