January 22, 2021
La Quinta, California, USA
La Quinta Country Club
Q. 15 birdies over the last two days, but you just have some other ones out there as well. Is that just because a little bit of rust as this being your first tournament of the year?
MAX HOMA: No, the 10th hole bugs me, I just haven't really figured out a great way to play it. I played here a million times, it just doesn't suit my ball flight. But other than that I only had a couple ticky tack bogeys, it wasn't really like -- yesterday I only had one -- so I haven't been making a lot of mistakes I've been leaving it in the right spots, I just had one bad hole today.
It's not rust, I've been playing really well at home and it's been similar, one bogey a day or something. So other than 10, it was a still a pretty solid round. This golf course will get you here and there and it's a little windy today, so I'm not surprised I made a couple bogeys, just got to get the big number one 10 out of the way. But other than that I played really well the last two days.
Q. Certainly have. You finished the season last year at Mayakoba with a really solid finish there. Anything in particular that you found at the end of last year that you've been working on the off-season?
MAX HOMA: Yeah, I switched coaches at the end of last year, started working with Mark Blackburn. So it was about a month learning curve, but everything's been really solid since the week before Mayakoba, my wedges have gotten a lot better, that's what we worked on primarily.
So it wasn't -- it was kind of like I knew it was coming, it was nice to see it at Mayakoba, I got extremely warm for awhile out there and then I've been playing like that in the off-season, just trying to keep refining what we have been working on.
So it's been feeling better and better, so, yeah, coming to a golf course I know really well, one that requires a lot of wedge, it's kind of just a good setup.
Q. You're a West Coast kid. Is playing on the West Coast here over the last four, five weeks, or coming up the next four, five weeks, kind of give you a sense of calmness like you're at home playing?
MAX HOMA: Yeah, every week feels like a home game. The only one that didn't for awhile was Phoenix and then we moved there, so smart move on our part.
Yeah, it's been -- every week out here on the West Coast is great for me. It stinks not having any fans, usually get my family and friends out, but I'm trying to give them a little excitement at home. I love playing all the golf courses on the West Coast. So it's always comfy to start the season out here.
Q. After what happened at 10 do you get more aggravated at making a triple bogey or how you responded with birdies afterwards?
MAX HOMA: I've been working really hard on my mental growth, you could say, this off-season and the week or so prior to Mayakoba. So I don't really get too aggravated. It was a bad swing compounded by another one. So it's just, it is what it is.
But, yeah, I mean there's no reason why you can't approach the next hole with the same vigor you would, how I tried to approach 10. So it was just a bad swing, hard hole, kind of tried to forget about it and worry about what I could control, which was 11 through 18.
Q. How do you work on your mental growth? Are there exercises that you can do for that?
MAX HOMA: Reading, positive affirmations, I've been very focused on being in the present. So it's very hard to get mad at something if it's already happened, if you're being in the present. So that's what I've been working on.
Q. Kind of just brought this up about your record on the West Coast and specifically California, eight top-10s on the PGA TOUR, four of them have come in California. Obviously there's a comfort level here. Does that carry over to all the golf courses?
MAX HOMA: Yeah, I love them all. Honestly, Stadium probably is -- this one typically hasn't fit us well in the past. We have been talking, Joe and I have been talking about playing this one well finally. We talked about it last year, I played well through three rounds.
So, like I said, working on my wedges, so that's helped out here I think finally making it fit a bit more. But, yeah, I mean Torrey Pines fits me great, Phoenix fits me well, I know Pebble probably the best and then Riviera is my favorite golf course in the world. So it's just like a good run of events for me. But, yeah, I mean it's just a West Coast kid, the grass is all the same, climate's similar, so I'm just very used to it.
Q. One last question, Kevin Price said when you're playing well, you talk about touching the sun. Is there an expression that you use for when things aren't going so well that would be of interest?
MAX HOMA: Of interest? No, I think you just start over climbing towards the sun. So you just got to restart the ascent. But, yeah, you try to make those happen a lot less than the approach.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports