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March 7, 2019

Rafa Cabrera Bello

Orlando, Florida

Q. Well played today. Particularly that save there at the 9th. What was the key for you today?
RAFA CABRERA BELLO: Thank you very much. Yeah, the save was nice to wrap up a good round, especially after hitting that drive and a bad second shot it was nice to finish with a par. But obviously getting off to a hot start was nice, it set the tone. This is the first time I played this event. I really didn't know what to expect. I know how nice and tough the course is and I think it's a course with many, many daunting shots, so I feel the more you play it, probably the better. So I wasn't really having much high expectations as opposed to just getting out there and playing my golf. Don't get me wrong, I do think the course suits me and I'm going to try my best and I'm happy the way I'm playing, the way I've been playing this year, so I'm just really pleased with the round and happy to be here at Bay Hill.

Q. You mentioned the first time here. You got to play with Sam Saunders, obviously the grandson of Arnold Palmer. What was it like for you so far this week being apart of this event?
RAFA CABRERA BELLO: Oh, I mean playing with Sam is always a pleasure but not because of he's the grandson of Arnie but because of how nice of a guy he is. So I love to play with him any given week. Obviously playing at Bay Hill with him I know how special this event is for all of us, I can only imagine how special it is for him.

Q. Excellent start. Some comments on your round, please.
RAFA CABRERA BELLO: Well, obviously very pleased, very happy. It is my first time playing here at Bay Hill. I watched the tournament on TV many times, I know how tough the course is, so I really didn't know what to expect, to be fair. I've been playing good this year, hitting the ball good and not quite getting as high finishes as I wanted but I felt like my game is good and I got off to a nice early hot start, which helped a lot, I hung in there, I kept playing solid golf most of the time, didn't really give myself very much chances of trouble and the little ones that I had I managed to save most of them. A couple lucky breaks, a couple good putts and when I look at the leaderboard I'm like, oh, 7-under looks nice.

Q. What is it about this course that fits your eye do you think as you played it? Obviously you don't know that much about it, but what has fit your eye so far?
RAFA CABRERA BELLO: Well, I like the way it's set up. The rough is tough. I tend to hit it fairly straight so I feel like I'm getting some advantage from hitting lots of fairways. If I manage to do that, the greens are beautiful, the ball's rolling really, really nice and I like -- there's a lot of challenging shots, pretty much on every hole it's inviting you to take a risk and it really gets you focused on what you want to do. Of course it's testing you because of all those daunting shots. You commit, I mean, it forces you to commit and I really enjoy that challenge.

Q. Did you ever have a relationship with Arnold Palmer and what would it mean to win an event that has his name on it?
RAFA CABRERA BELLO: I mean I, unfortunately, I never had a relationship with him, I would have loved to, but it didn't happen and for me to be here it's an honor, obviously, I'm really happy to be playing here for the first time and then to win an event that has pretty much the name of one of the greatest players on earth would be really, really special, but I don't know if I should remind you it's only Thursday.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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