July 6, 2022
North Berwick, Scotland
The Renaissance Club
BRIONY CARLYON: Delighted to welcome Jon Rahm back to the Genesis Scottish Open. Rolex Series Event, you've taken up that title four times, so you seem to perform and love it but now as well special that it's a DP World Tour and PGA TOUR co-sanctioned tournaments for the first time. Give us your thoughts on being back and the two tours coming together as well.
JON RAHM: Yeah, selfishly, I can say that for somebody who plays both tours to, have one event that counts not only as a start but it can count for both tours, it's a wonderful thing. You can come over and play well in Europe. To travel over for European players that live in the States, it's a huge help. I think it's wonderful for the game of golf. You get more players that maybe wouldn't have come to this event to come and see this beautiful course, and play in Scotland. Looking forward to it, and I can't wait to get started.
Q. What is it about your game that travels so well?
JON RAHM: I've been asked this question a couple times and I can't tell you one thing. In one word, I'd say it's consistency on the swing, consistency in the way I do things, I would say. I have a rather simple swing that allows me to pretty much play my game anywhere I go. In the last five years, any golf course -- I would say the one word, I would say consistency.
But I am a firm believer, you know, you hear nowadays that on this golf course, it suits this player, but our job as players is to be adaptable. It's my job to adjust myself to a golf course, not the golf course to adjust to me. If I have golf courses that are on paper very good for me it would be a short list. It's my job as a golfer to adapt to the situation.
Q. Is this event, now that it's much bigger because of the collaboration between The European Tour and the PGA TOUR, how important is this preparation for St Andrews next week?
JON RAHM: So I think it's very important to play an event when you're trying to get ready for a major like The Open Championship. We don't play -- when you live in the US, you don't see anything like it all year round. It takes a bit of adjusting to get your golf game ready for links golf. You have to be able to control your spin, trajectory and ball flight and try to use the ground a lot more than we are used to in the US. Being able to come the week before and have such a strong field, it's an added bonus.
Now with St Andrews, yeah, playing in The Open the at the Old Course, it's the dream of every golfer, especially a European golfer, and to be the 150th edition, it's something that's very, very significant. I can't imagine, again, I can't tell you how many times I've seen the images of Seve celebrating his winning putt, and it would be amazing to hopefully be able to join my name to that list.
To be honest, I don't think there's a bigger achievement in golf than winning The Open Championship at St Andrews. I think it's the biggest event.
Q. Top 10 finish last year, can you talk about the week in general?
JON RAHM: Yeah, it's always good to play solid golf on a links course before you go to The Open Championship. It gave me quite a bit of confidence knowing my game is ready to basically take home whatever St George's had ready for us.
It wasn't my best weekend. I remember starting really hot on Friday morning. I think I was 7-under through ten holes and came in at 6-under par, I believe. I did have a go but I didn't have my best week. It's golf. It is how it is. I had a really good weekend at The Open Championship, and those things happen.
It just shows that I know how to play the golf course. I remember we had completely different wind every day. So we'll see. If we have the wind we have right now, it going to be a very different golf course to what we play. We'll see how the weather is and we'll see what I can do. But I think Phil Mickelson has shown that you can take a lot of confidence from playing similar the week before since he's won a tournament before a major and then won a major a couple times.
Q. When was it that you learned that you didn't have to be perfect to win?
JON RAHM: A long time ago. A long time ago. I wasn't a good ball-striker, even remotely good to a ball-striker until my junior year in college. My whole life, I would describe myself more as a competitor to where I just, you go to the course with what you have and you have to try to shoot the lowest score you can -- Spanish golf. That's how I grew up AND my short game got me out of a lot of trouble. That's the life of a golfer, you're not always going to be feeling your best and on those days when you're not at your best, somehow, somehow, try to post it under par.
Q. With the number of exemptions in the field, does it feel like a different tournament?
JON RAHM: Nothing really has changed. Some different players but I would say the field is stronger which is a good thing, makes for a better champion and championship. The course is the same. Nothing's really changed.
Q. The inevitable LIV question. How do you feel about, I think there were four players who have been added to the field having successfully appealed against their sanctions.
JON RAHM: Yeah, I found out recently. The best way I can describe it is simply not my business, not my decision. So they are allowed to play in the competition, it is what it is. I truly don't know how or what really happened, so I don't know as much as I probably should to be able to answer the question.
But yeah, I think what's important is that we have a great championship at hand and not let the golf politics dictate how good the tournament is.
Q. Rory said, and Billy Horschel was in yesterday --
JON RAHM: I haven't seen what they said. I really don't know much about it.
Q. Their attitude seems to be, well, if you want to play LIV Golf, then fine, don't play and don't come back here. Would you go along with that; that if players are going to go, don't try ask come back and play on the DP World Tour?
JON RAHM: Again, it's not my decision. There have been a lot of members that have been both members of PGA TOUR and European Tour. I think it's a bit -- it wouldn't be too logical to expect them to play all three tours. I don't think it's really more than that.
Yeah, I understand where they are coming from. European Tour and PGA TOUR have done a wonderful job for so many years, and have been given those players a platform to play golf and make a living. If they choose to leave to play a different tour, I wouldn't necessarily think they should be expected to be welcomed back.
Q. I know you're sick and tired of being asked about Dubai, what will make you change your mind?
JON RAHM: One year was COVID. Not going to risk anything for that. Dubai is a tournament I really love. Last year, mentally and physically, I needed a break. We were new parents, and I had played so much golf that I wasn't able to exercise that role as a dad.
After The Ryder Cup and not seeing my child for a whole week that time and going to Spain afterwards and not seeing them for two weeks, I just wanted to be home. I got to a point where -- really sorry for DP World Tour, but spending that extra week at home with my family was more important. Unless something happens, I do plan ongoing to Dubai this year, if I qualify. I don't even know if I'm in the top 60 now but I am, I would like to go.
Q. I'm sure you're familiar with the expansion alliance between the PGA TOUR and the DP World Tour. Can you explain to me from a PGA TOUR what the benefit is for the PGA TOUR players?
JON RAHM: I think it's more playing opportunities in that sense. This is a perfect example, if it's a PGA TOUR that's also in The Open and wanted to play this week, this is a clear path. This is the beginning of hopefully more than one that is a co-sanctioned event and giving players a chance to come to Europe and play more golf.
There is some wonderful events here in Europe. Without speaking to most of the players about it, I think a lot of them would love to come and have a chance to play. Some are trying to go play Italy, maybe make it a vacation at the same time. Sounds pretty good to me.
Yeah, like I said, I do see also what you're asking, there's a lot of European Tour players now that have more clear path to the PGA TOUR, and there are some great events there as well. It's going to be easier for each one to do, basically, transfer, if you want to play one tour.
Q. Do you foresee at some point the two tours being one, one day?
JON RAHM: I have no idea. I don't think there will be one. I do think there will be a number of events that will count for both tours. Like I said, be more opportunities. I don't know exactly. I can't really tell you what's in their minds. But if we could possibly end up with such thing where maybe under some scenario there's one tour, I think it would be amazing. One of the beautiful things got game of golf is that it takes you to some beautiful locations in the world, and if united tours is what it takes, I wouldn't be opposed to it.
Q. The Opens you've played, I'm sure you've been caught on the wrong side of the draw.
JON RAHM: Probably.
Q. Is it difficult attitude-wise at an Open?
JON RAHM: I can't remember in any of my Opens having a clear cut, massive difference because the waves, I think one year at Muirfield where one of the waves had massive -- Birkdale, big difference -- Harrington.
So it's just golf. It happens. And champions have come through that weather, so it's not impossible. It's just what is expected. It happens. It happens in a lot of tournaments we play. There's always by difference one wave to the next. But out here, the difference is quite a few strokes and it is what it is. As a player, like I said earlier, you have to adapt and sometimes it's just out of your control.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports