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October 15, 2023

Talor Gooch

Jeddah, Saudi Arabia

Royal Greens Golf & Country Club

RangeGoats GC

Press Conference

THE MODERATOR: Let's welcome our 2023 LIV Golf individual season champion, Talor Gooch from RangeGoats GC. That's got a pretty good ring to it, hasn't it.

TALOR GOOCH: Man, it's awesome. From January 1 until now, that's what we've been working for, so to get here and to be the champion, man, I'm proud, I'm honored, and I'm excited.

Q. What a way to get it done, 8-under today. Tell us just a bit about that round with everything on the line. How were you feeling out there today?

TALOR GOOCH: Man, I was nervous as could be all night last night and all morning today, and we got to the first tee, and I knocked it on the green, made a 30-footer, and I just settled in. It was a very, very stressful day, very exciting day, but man, my caddie and I just did a great job of staying in the moment and just executing.

It was a day that you dream of for the score and the moment and all of it, so it was a special, special day.

Q. You've traveled well this year, wins in Adelaide, Singapore, Andalucía and performing well in Jeddah this week. What is it about the international events that bring out the best in your game?

TALOR GOOCH: Man, I've got no idea. It helps having a caddie from Australia that's traveled the world as a professional and as a caddie, as well. We just have great routines on the road, and the golf courses have fit us. It's been a great international 2023 for us.

Q. Talor, were you managing the scoreboard at all? Were you looking at it? How much were you aware of where you stood versus everybody else?

TALOR GOOCH: Yeah, absolutely. Like I said, in these moments your eyes are always going to look at scoreboards. You have to just figure out when that happens, how do you get back to focusing on the task at hand.

You know, I didn't come into this day thinking about winning a golf tournament. It's easy for your mind to just say, let's just go have a good day and solidify the individual championship, and then after nine holes, I was only one or two back, and I was feeling good, and the putter was hot. I was like, let's go win a golf tournament.

It was a little bit bittersweet at the end not being able to get that done. But all day you're looking at the scoreboard and seeing where you are compared to everyone.

Q. You told us earlier in the week that you had never won a season-long title before. In the scheme of things, can you wrap your arms around that? What does that mean exactly to finally achieve that?

TALOR GOOCH: Yeah, I mean, listen, you've got 48 guys. I don't know how many major champions and Ryder Cuppers and Ryder Cup captains and Hall-of-Famers, but you've got 48 of the best players in the world with some legends and some current great players, major champions. When you're playing all kind of courses across the world in different climates, in different parts of the world and back home in the States and everything over the span of a season, to beat everybody over the course of that, it speaks volumes to the quality of golf that you've played.

For me, again, it's a validation to all the hard work, all the patience and the years it took to get my game to this spot to, I think, be considered one of the best players in the world.

Q. Do you feel like you played with a chip on your shoulder this year?

TALOR GOOCH: Yeah, I think I always play with a chip on my shoulder. It's just everyone has always kind of -- I've gone under the radar, if you will, which is fine. But for me, it's a driving factor.

Then you circle all the way around to the end of last season with what DJ had said and being on the new team, it's motivating for sure.

Yeah, I like the chip on the shoulder.

Q. Just to go back to that playoff, obviously Brooks was in a very similar déjà-vu situation last year. Did that cross your mind at any point and how you were going to take that playoff on?

TALOR GOOCH: I mean, with that hole, you know how Brooks is playing. You know that birdie is probably not going to win it.

The first tee shot on the first playoff hole, I didn't have a chance to go for it, and then the second one -- I was trying to be aggressive, and I overcooked it a little bit.

You know that birdie is not going to win there. I was trying to win a golf tournament.

It was close, but Brooks played great and got the job done.

Q. What's $18 million going to spend?

TALOR GOOCH: So my wife and I have a foundation that we started, and first and foremost it's going to do a lot of good back home for a lot of kids. That's going to be the focus.

Q. Did you ever think that you would be standing where you are? There's 25 major champion victories out here and there's 13 major champion winners. You are standing on top of all those guys. You've got to feel like a million bucks, or $18 million.

TALOR GOOCH: Man, it's special. Again, I've always felt that I was good enough to be a professional golfer and play against the best in the world. Now to be here to, I think, consider myself one of the best in the world, it's what I've been dreaming about since I was nine years old. To get to this point in my career and to have this validating of a season, yeah, words can't describe how much it means and just how satisfying it is.

Q. Have you talked to your dad?

TALOR GOOCH: I have, yeah. It was a good convo.

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