August 11, 2023
Bedminster, New Jersey, USA
Trump National Golf Club
THE MODERATOR: We are joined now by Charles Howell III from Crusher GC. You shot a 4-under 67. Tell us a little bit about your round.
CHARLES HOWELL III: Well, at the start of the day I would have taken anything under par, that's for certain. This golf course is really difficult. Compared to last year, this was my first LIV event. The rough is a bit thicker, and yeah, the golf course is playing longer, being a bit wet. Anything under par around here I'll take.
Q. You mentioned that this was your LIV Golf debut, so it's been exactly a year. Can you take a minute to reflect on this last year?
CHARLES HOWELL III: What a year it's been. You know, it's probably been the best golfing year of my career, just from all sorts of everything, from playing with the teammates every week to the 48 guys we have assembled. I think we've all become closer and better friends through this, traveling together, traveling the world together. Even the LIV Golf staff, we've all become much closer and friends, and there's a lot of people that put a lot of effort and time and sacrifice into this, and a year now in for me, it's only gotten better.
Q. Mike was writing a story about some of the other teams asking who's the team to beat this year, is it the 4 Aces or Torque, and Sergio actually said it was Crushers, specifically calling out your play. What do you think of that?
CHARLES HOWELL III: Was he drinking? No.
Listen, I think I've had a nice year. I've had a few weeks where I've struggled a bit. But I've had a nice year.
Bryson is going to play good. Bryson is obviously a world-class player. Paul Casey is obviously a veteran Ryder Cup stalwart, et cetera. Anirban is really steady. I need to uphold my end of the spectrum, and I've done that most weeks. A few weeks I've struggled. I love our team. I love our guys. Got to mention Bryson's 61-58 again last weekend, which is just incredible golf.
That's a bit of the team aspect that gets a bit underrated is the pressure you feel.
I'm kind of okay disappointing myself. I don't want to disappoint those around you. You feel it every day.
Q. Can you tell us where you were and what you were thinking when Bryson shot his 61-58?
CHARLES HOWELL III: Well, first I was on the golf course and I kept watching him make birdies, then I didn't see that many were out there, but I was just left of the green on 18 when he holed that putt in the rain and up over the hill and it was a smelly putt and tough to get the speed right.
I would have been trying to lag that thing to shoot 59, and he makes it to shoot 58, which is why he's a world-class player.
But what a moment. What a moment for him, for LIV Golf, for the game of golf, for everything.
Q. Paul Casey said that you were horrible at spraying champagne. Do you care to comment on that?
CHARLES HOWELL III: I am horrendous at it. At Mayakoba I didn't even get the cork off and then just quit. This one I was nervous it wouldn't come off, so I shook it a bit and then popped it off to make sure it would. Yeah, Paul is extremely accurate on that. I'm not good.
Q. Do you think part of the team dynamic also is that Bryson can go out and do what he did last week and you can actually feed off of that the following week, and do you feel like that played any kind of part even in today, for instance?
CHARLES HOWELL III: There's definitely a standard to uphold or that you try to uphold. I know Bryson expects to win and to be up at the top. Then he goes and shoots 61-58 to kind of show that.
Yeah, I think it's the pressure that you feel playing for other people and not just myself. No matter what you've shot the day before, you're still beholden to not letting the team down the next day, and I think that's the team element of it where even on Sunday, if you're not in the running to win the tournament individually, you're still pressing on for the team.
Q. Today, for instance, specifically for you, do you feel like this is as good as it's been for you since Mayakoba? Are you feeling --
CHARLES HOWELL III: I've had some nice rounds. Yeah, some nice, steady tournaments, and the last round in Singapore I played well there, had 63 there, some good days in Tulsa.
But I think some nice rounds last week, but today was a bit feeding off of last week, I think. Obviously this golf course is extremely challenging. It feels a bit like a major, to be honest.
36 hard holes ahead.
Q. How important was it to have par there on that final hole?
CHARLES HOWELL III: Oh, always, especially that darned par-3, and then playing that back tee where it's 220 with the wind across and all that. Yeah, that was a nice one to steal that one.
Q. You are overwhelmingly positive. Can you tell me how you stay so positive, and can you give me an example of you getting angry?
CHARLES HOWELL III: I realized early in my career that if I was going to play golf -- and this probably applies to anything, that if you beat yourself up, you're going to have a miserable life. There's no question. So no matter what situation happens, you can either choose to be positive or negative about it.
That's not always easy to do. It's much easier said than done. But I've tried to choose to be positive in that.
Moments of me getting mad? Boy, there's plenty of them. I don't really show it a lot.
But I haven't had like a massive just meltdown on the golf course yet, but give me time. I've got some years in me.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports