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May 23, 2018

Jon Rahm

Fort Worth, Texas

Q. Jon, what does it take to compete around this golf course?
JON RAHM: You know, it's an old-school golf course and I believe old traditional golf courses give any kind of player a chance to win it.

So there are so many different ways of playing it. You can play it like I do and hit drivers all over the place and be aggressive. You can play it more conservative. Hit irons, make sure you hit fairways. There are just many ways to do two.

At the end of the day, you need to hit greens on this golf course. You need to be able to hit the greens and not be out of position too much.

As history shows, you don't really shoot very low here. Last year we all played good. I was 9-under and one shot off the lead, so certainly not easy to score.

Q. Talk to me about the tee shot at 16.
JON RAHM: The par-3? Well, it's not an easy one definitely. Really depends on the pin position, like most par-3s. This one, it's a key component. If the pin is the top right there really isn't any room to hit on the greens. You need to be able to be smart and be able to, you know, go to the fat side the of green and take a conservative spot.

If they put the pins short, you can be really aggressive because you got a backstop. If you get the chance you can almost get a one.

So it's one of those holes where you probably want to be left of the pin. As a general rule, you want to be left.

Again, it's really hard one of. If you miss the green, it's going to be an extremely hard up and down no matter where you are. If you hit the green, it could also be a tough two-putt.

So it's one of those finishing stretches that's not easy. One of those holes, make a birdie, picking up a lot of strokes.

Q. What does the name Ben Hogan mean to you?
JON RAHM: Tricky question. You know, it means so many things to I believe most of us. Ben Hogan was a visionary of the game; greatest shotmaker to ever live, and if it wasn't for the car accident, probably the greatest player to ever live.

So you never know. But the legacy and what he stood for, integrity, the hard work, and the imagination and the engineering that comes (indiscernible) he worked on is very special.

Probably one of those few players that played in that time that would be happy about the technology changes. We're all (indiscernible - wind.) with Jack Nicklaus, Tiger. I was at the Ben Hogan, (wind interference.) got to love the technology.

I think he would have been the only single one in that era that believes this is better for golf. But I think they would all agree that if it gets more people into the game, it's good.

Finally, being a two-time Ben Hogan Award champion and finalist, just to be somewhat related to his history and legacy, it's a huge honor. That's why I keep coming this year. This spot, this clubhouse, this golf course, is deep in my heart. It's thanks to him that I won here twice.

You know, I can't wait to just keep coming and represent the game golf the same way Hogan did.

Q. On a different issue, Thomas Bjorn named four more vice captains this week. What are your thoughts on how his backroom team shapes up for Team Europe and your enthusiasm to be on the playing side of his team in September?
JON RAHM: Well, I mean, obviously when you're captain pick people that have been in you plenty of Ryder Cups, have plenty of experiences. They're going to be able to help out people like me, right? When you got people like Padraig Harrington and Lee Westwood combined on the Ryder Cup, ten plus, for sure, right? How many matches they've played, how many up and downs, I mean, they know everything there is to know.

And also, two players that have played in golf (indiscernible). Lee have been in a playoff to win that event. You know, there is a lot of people that have a lot of experience and will be able to help us out.

From what I've seen, great players with a lot of experience (indiscernible) former No. 1 in the world. (Wind) great decisions.

I think, I mean, there is no better way to go with it. He is going to pick whoever he thinks it best. It's not like I can disagree or agree, right? It's great choices, great players.

Luckily, as Europeans we have many players to choose from.

Q. Jon, what was it about Colonial this fits your eye? You played so well in your first appearance.
JON RAHM: I like traditional golf courses. You know, everything that says it shouldn't be good for me, in my mind is good for me.

Really I grew up next to a golf course very similar to this, tree lined. A lot more trees than this one has. Narrow fairways, but it's not long. After playing there for so long, I got used to just hitting drivers all over the place, right?

When I came here and I saw the golf course, I'm like, I'm just going to keep doing the same thing. I felt like if I am going to miss the fairway I would rather be 60 yards away or 70 yards a way than laying up and having 130, especially with this rough being unpredictable and these small greens, right? The closer you are the green the easier it will be to hit the green. That's kind of the idea I have.

I'm also a lot more comfortable off the tee with a driver than I am with a 3-wood or an iron, so all combined, it's just something that really fits my eye. A lot of holes also are left-to-right tee shots. A lot of them besides a couple down the stretch.

I don't now. It's just a place I come to and the vibe is so positive. I got good memories here from the Ben Hogan award, so every time I come, no matter how I'm playing, I'm just so happy I feel like I'm going to play good.

Q. How does your game feel coming in this year?
JON RAHM: Feels really good. I mean, I been playing good all year, besides PLAYERS. PLAYERS is such a hard golf course for all of us. Playing good is not enough.

It feels really good. I been taking a lot of time off this year getting ready for summer events, and I feel like this could be a good one to hopefully play good and have a chance to win on Sunday and get some positive vibes going for the U.S. Open.

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