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February 2, 2016
Dubai, United Arab Emirates
MICHAEL GIBBONS: Bryson, welcome to Dubai and the OMEGA Dubai Desert Classic.
BRYSON DeCHAMBEAU: Thank you for having me. This is awesome. Pretty cool for an amateur.
MICHAEL GIBBONS: Give your thoughts, even the last two weeks, reflect on The Desert Swing so far and how it's going for you. Do you enjoy it?
BRYSON DeCHAMBEAU: Yeah, the hospitality has been incredible to be honest with you. I can't say thank you enough to the whole European Tour and The Desert Swing, it's just been awesome. Done a great job and had incredible hospitality and the generosity around here has been great. It's been well received and I'm greatly appreciative of that, and I look forward to coming back the next few years, I would definitely say so.
Again, regarding the past two weeks, it's been fun. Learned a lot. Messed up a couple times but that's how it goes as an intern, so it's fun.
MICHAEL GIBBONS: Quick thoughts on the golf course. Have you seen it yet?
BRYSON DeCHAMBEAU: You know what, I have not seen it. I'm going to go play nine this afternoon and play 18 tomorrow, and play as an amateur with ThorbjĂ¸rn Olesen. That will be fun, he'll be the professional and I'll be the amateur. It will be a good time, though.
Q. How much does a 64 and a 65 in this country give you a boost ahead of a tournament like this?
BRYSON DeCHAMBEAU: It's great confidence, no doubt, to shoot a low number like that, and I know I can do it. It's just a matter of staying in the moment and staying in your rhythm and getting your job done, right. You have to go out there and execute.
Unfortunately my mind-set has not been in the best frame of mind, and working on that, figuring out how to deal with some different things. If I can get that past me and work on focusing on the next shot in hand, I think I can do pretty well.
Q. And how does it feel when people say you're the most interesting man in golf?
BRYSON DeCHAMBEAU: Again, I'm just a person. I just look at myself as, hey, I'm here to play some golf and do my best, whether that's a win or an major championship, doesn't matter, it's about learning every singling day. In regards to being the most interesting person in golf, look, I just like being different I guess, and if people say that I'm that, then it's fun. It's fun. I guess it's cool.
Q. Something like a 22-year-old Jordan Spieth the No. 1 player in the world, you are 22; how much does that motivate you?
BRYSON DeCHAMBEAU: Oh, absolutely. Jordan Spieth is an incredible ambassador. He's done a lot for the game already at 22. To see him performing so well and No. 1 in the world, that's just unbelievable. I certainly didn't imagine that for anybody when I was growing up.
I thought Tiger would always be No. 1. Obviously that's changed a little bit and I look forward to playing some more golf with him and hopefully competing with the best for quite a while.
Q. You joined four other big names when you won those two amateur tournaments last year. Did that put a lot of pressure on you, knowing you're in such esteemed company?
BRYSON DeCHAMBEAU: No, again, pressure is put on yourself, right, as you said. It's something that I try not to do. It's obviously a great feat but I'm not focusing on that. I'm focusing on the journey, the process, every single shot I'm trying to hit the next best shot, right.
And so if I can only -- if I only focus on that, then the rest will take care of itself. But if I think about, oh, wow, I've done this, I've done that, and I want to do this, and I want to do that, I'm going to lose sight of what's really important and that's playing the next golf the next shot at hand.
Q. Is it possible to get your wooden clubs the same length as irons? It's very difficult, isn't it?
BRYSON DeCHAMBEAU: You're saying the driver, 3-wood, hybrid? Yeah, so we're working on that. That's a difficult task because of the regulations from the R&A and USGA. They obviously have a COR limit and we are trying to figure out a way to make them the same length. That would be pretty cool.
We've definitely thought about that. We definitely test it out but it doesn't work very well obviously -- it works fine. It just doesn't go far enough on the driver and the 3-wood. It only goes to 255, 260, rolls out to that, and it could go a little bit further, depending on the conditions.
But again, the distance gap between the driver/3-wood and 3-wood/hybrid is probably around seven -- six, seven, eight degrees depending on who you are, right. And my irons are all four to five degrees of loft different. And that four to five degrees loft difference, when swung at 90 miles an hour, goes 12 to 13 yards further.
And from the 3-wood to the driver, you need it to go about 20 to 25 yards further. So we need to literally double that; make it eight degrees difference. And in doing so, as you push it further and further to the driver, you go from a 3-iron to the hybrid, and 3-wood to the driver, you get into negative loft and it doesn't make sense. So we're working on it. (Laughter).
MICHAEL GIBBONS: That's the short answer.
Q. Has your club manufacturer tried to market this yet?
BRYSON DeCHAMBEAU: So I can't say too much about that yet. I'm still an amateur obviously. But there is some work that we're doing to try and figure out a fitting system, and we do have something in the works, but again that's down the road. When I turn professional I can take more about that.
Q. How much has this journey of three weeks helped you for the Masters and what are you playing before that?
BRYSON DeCHAMBEAU: Yeah, so these past three weeks, and even four or five weeks, I've literally been on the road, travelling and going to some club companies and figuring things out. It's been a long journey, I can tell you that, and I'm definitely sensing when I'm breaking down.
Last week it was a bit of a -- I stopped playing my best, just because I got a little tired. I'm hopefully going to be ready this week. I know I will get some good rest in this week but I see these break-off points of when I can play and when I'm not able to perform my best. We're learning that aspect, and that's really going to help we in the Masters, figure out when I can play and when I can't and how to get ready.
I'm also playing in the Arnold Palmer Invitational before that I'll play in the Georgia Cup. It's the competition between the U.S. Amateur and the British Amateur Champion held at Georgia Golf Club, I believe, and we'll be playing that, I think the Thursday before -- two Thursdays before the Masters I think -- Thursday before the Masters. From that, I'll get ready for the Masters.
Q. Obviously you said there's been a lot of media attention around you, especially this past couple of weeks. How have you embraced that? How has that been for you?
BRYSON DeCHAMBEAU: It's been great. Everybody has been incredible and really nice through this whole process. It's a little different obviously.
Last year at this time, I was kind of a nobody, you know, and to be honest with you, I still think of myself as that. I try to be as humble as possible, and it's difficult at some points in time but I'm learning how to go through that process. And it's a lot of fun, too. It's a platform where you can speak your mind and say what you want for the world to hear; it's a little different. But I'm embracing it. I'm liking it. It's enjoyable. It's something I look forward to doing quite honestly for a long time.
Q. Has it surprised you that it's been so quick that you've managed to get all this media attention?
BRYSON DeCHAMBEAU: Yeah, it's incredible. I never thought -- let me tell you, I never thought I would win the NCAAs and U.S. Amateur in the same year. That's just something that I never even dreamed of. That's something that's come about because of the process and how I've worked through this. And in that comes a lot of attention, and we're working through that. I'm getting better at it. I wasn't very good at first. I'm getting better and it's a lot of fun.
Q. When you say working on it, who is that helping you with that?
BRYSON DeCHAMBEAU: I have people that help me out, speech coaches and things like that, and brain coaches I guess you could say. Can't talk too much about it, endorse anything, but it's a lot of fun. I'm learning and figuring out how to talk and what to say at the right time. It's great.
Q. What do you know of this tournament?
BRYSON DeCHAMBEAU: I know Ernie's won it; Rory's won it; Henrik's won it. There's been a lot of great champions that have played here and done very well.
So I'm looking forward to putting my game up against the best in the world and seeing where I kind of fit in right now and from that experience, I'll definitely learn where I am and where I need to be for the Masters. So it's kind of a great preparation for the Masters, too.
Q. You had your first trip to Augusta just recently. Can you tell us about the "wow" factor and getting that out of the way and how it all went and what your first memories were watching on TV?
BRYSON DeCHAMBEAU: Of watching the Masters on TV? Yeah, so I knew it was an incredible experience, something that I didn't think I was going to be able to do at this early of an age. I always dreamed of it but definitely happened sooner, rather than later, which is nice.
Growing up watching it on TV, I was always watching -- the most famous shot for me was 2006 when Tiger chipped in from back of the green on 16. I went over and tried to replicate that shot a little bit, and just looking at it, going, wow, this is where it is, that's pretty cool.
In regards to the "wow" factor, though, it's already starting to taper off a little bit. I mean, it's still amazing, and I'll always have that "aura" feeling around where Bobby Jones is still living there. I can definitely say that. It's incredible. When you get there, you go down Magnolia Lane, you go around a little circle, you find the clubhouse and you see that huge trophy, and never realised how big that trophy really was until I got there. I mean, it's legitimately almost two and a half to three feet in diameter. It's incredible. It's silver and it's just amazing.
And some of the stories there were just unbelievable. Had a great guy named Charley, the assistant pro, that kind of gave us a little bit of a tour around the place, and it was quite amazing, and I was definitely wowed by that, right, but hopefully as time goes on, I play three or four more times, I'll kind of get that out. And I'll still be an amateur but I think I'll be more focused on how to play golf rather than just this experience.
Q. Do you keep score?
BRYSON DeCHAMBEAU: No.
Q. Are you going to get some players to practise with?
BRYSON DeCHAMBEAU: Yeah, I mean, Phil was nice enough -- Phil Mickelson was nice enough to actually give me a little spot in the Tuesday game. He said, "You and me are going to be a team." At least that's what he said, I don't know if it's true or not, I've got to be careful what I say in that regard, but he said that and hopefully we do that, and if not still, it's fun. He was super nice to me and gave some helpful insight when I talked to him. But that's all that we've set up so far from what I've heard from him.
Q. Bet you won't talk about the money either --
BRYSON DeCHAMBEAU: Still an amateur (laughter).
Q. You said you tired a bit towards the end of Abu Dhabi. How can you sort of get over that to be more consistent with your scores here this week?
BRYSON DeCHAMBEAU: Tired, you said?
Q. You said you were tiring.
BRYSON DeCHAMBEAU: Well, in Qatar, I was pretty tired, yeah. And I think that in order to take that away, it could affect the way -- I've got to eat better and sleep a little bit better, right times in the day. I sometimes stay up a little too late, ten, eleven o'clock where I should be getting to bed early and go working out in the morning, getting my body prepared and healthy. I think my body just kind of gives out.
It's tough when you're travelling internationally, too, because you're not used to the same foods and things like that. It's tough, a little more difficult to eat and it's been a difficult process, but it's one that I'm learning and knowing when to eat, how to eat and what things to eat, as well.
So it's a bit of a process but I think in order to sustain my energy levels, I have to eat a little bit better and sleep at better times, and actually take some naps every once in awhile when I have some time. Because there is a lot to see, a lot to do and you want to go do these things and go see the Burj Khalifa or do things like that, but you have to manage your time in order to play your best, and that's what I think I can do a little bit better job of next time.
Q. Can you believe Jordan Spieth's recent schedule, six countries in less than two months or something like that?
BRYSON DeCHAMBEAU: Yeah, he's a world traveller. I think I saw him in one of the articles that he doesn't want to do that next year or something like that, which I understand. It's brutal, definitely is, takes a toll on you. The European Tour travels every week and these guys are troopers, they go every week and they are in another country and they are used to it, though. Jordan is not used to it.
So that's why I think he said that. I can't put words in his mouth, I'm obviously not him but I think that that's kind of along the lines of where he's thinking, and I certainly wouldn't be able to do that. Too difficult for an American who is used to travelling in the country, and it's very easy to get from place to place; compared to where you're travelling from country to country and going through the passport checks and all that. It's a little difficult.
But it's amazing what he's done. Again, he's a great ambassador for the game and he couldn't be a better person for the game of golf.
MICHAEL GIBBONS: Bryson, we wish you very well this week.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports