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April 9, 2009

Chad Campbell


LARRY PUGH: We'll get started. Thank you for being with us. Chad, just a terrific day. Just a little history, if you're not aware of this, in 1956 Ken Venturi birdied the first four holes in the first round. This is the first time the first five holes have been birdied in the first round at Augusta. Quite a feat, and you kept it going in the second nine, also.
We'll open up for any comment you have or just go to questions.
CHAD CAMPBELL: Yeah, definitely happy the way the round started. Got off on a roll, and it's always nice to make a couple of birdies to start, much less five. It was definitely the way I wanted to start.
Felt like I was hitting it good all day. I think one of most important things today was making those two saves on 10 and 11, the par saves on 10 and 11 kind of kept the round going. Unfortunately I ended up with two bogeys to finish, but overall, pretty happy with the round.

Q. You're pretty easy-going, how excited were you inside after 5-under in the first five?
CHAD CAMPBELL: I was pretty excited. You can't get too excited after five holes; you have a lot of golf left. I was trying to hit good golf shots to try to give myself as many opportunities as I could. There were some birdies to be made out there, but if you hit a couple of bad shots, you can make bogeys out there as well.

Q. I guess they had the tees up pretty far right on the very first hole, to the degree that they can control it, they were giving you guys green lights to play today. Must have been nice after the last couple of trips around this place.
CHAD CAMPBELL: Yeah, they must have felt sorry for us, especially on the first hole to get it up top. I had 7-iron in there. It was definitely nicer having 7-iron in there than 3-iron or 2-iron as I have sometimes.

Q. Were you thinking about the course record at one point?
CHAD CAMPBELL: You know, just on the back nine. It's always in the back of your head as you're making birdies, and you know you've got 13 and 15 that's Par-5s, and, you know, able to pick some up there.
You know, just somewhere in there, and kind of hard to say where exactly; I can't remember where exactly I thought about it. But the fans did a good job of reminding me. (Laughter).

Q. Can you talk about, just like as a basketball player makes all of the shots and are in the zone; when you make five birdies like that, are you in the zone at that point?
CHAD CAMPBELL: Like I said before, alls I'm trying to do out there is hit one shot at a time. I know it's kind of cliché, but it's really all you can do, especially out here. Like I said, you get one bad shot and you're behind the 8-ball, no telling. That's what I was trying to do and definitely felt good with my swing and good with the stroke, as well.
So when you feel that way, you can be a little bit more aggressive than usual.

Q. You talked about the par saves at 10 and 11; can you give some details on what you had to do to get those down?
CHAD CAMPBELL: I hit two good shots on 10, just had it probably 25, 30 feet right of the hole, 25 feet, and just hit a bad putt, bad speed, and I ran it probably at least ten feet by and was able to make that coming back.
On 11 hit a great tee shot, and hit my 5-iron a little right of the green. Actually I hit a pretty good chip and I thought it was -- thought it was good, anyway, and it kept running. It ran probably about the same, about ten feet past the hole. I was able to make that, as well; and then birdied the 12th.

Q. You mentioned the fans were reminding you of the course record; how were they doing that? Were they yelling 63 or what were they saying?
CHAD CAMPBELL: They were yelling everything. You know, "One more; get to ten; 63." I heard it all. It was good, though. Glad to see them behind me.

Q. At the end of a round like this, do you ever get mentally tired? You had such a great round, and to bogey the last two holes, is it a factor of fatigue at all?
CHAD CAMPBELL: The two bogeys weren't. It is; you do get a little mentally tired today, but I have not been doing too much the last few days with the weather, just laying around. So I don't have many excuses or that.
But I do know what you're saying. You're grinding so hard for that many holes; I just hit a couple of bad shots there on the last few holes.

Q. Can you take us through 17 and 18?
CHAD CAMPBELL: Love to. (Laughter).

Q. Not blow by blow, but obviously --
CHAD CAMPBELL: I hooked it off 17 and was behind the tree, and really didn't have a shot. I was trying to hit it up right of the green and chip it up and left it in the bunker instead of keeping it right of the bunker, and it was a pretty tough bunker shot, and then hit it out to probably 15 feet and missed that.
18, just pulled the tee shot just a hair and it ran into the bunker. I actually hit a really good second shot. I had 7-iron in, didn't know if I was going to be able to get it over the lip. I was pretty far in the bunker. Hit a great shot and then hit two pretty bad putts.

Q. Just as a follow-up, at that point, are you mad at yourself or are you happy with yourself that you are in the lead after round one?
CHAD CAMPBELL: Obviously happy that I'm in the lead, but definitely never want to finish the round with two bogeys. Kind of leaves a little bit of a sour taste in your mouth.
I still feel like I'm playing well, and just kind of keep it going. There's a lot of golf to be played.

Q. Have you ever played Augusta National under such benign conditions, and can you give us a perspective of how different the course really was for you?
CHAD CAMPBELL: I'm sorry. Could you repeat the last part of that?

Q. Can you explain and give us a perspective of how different it really was out there?
CHAD CAMPBELL: You know, maybe a few times, I've played it with this little wind. Not very often, though.
You know, by no means is it easy out there. But if you hit good golf shots, you really get rewarded. I think that's the main thing.
You know, as opposed to what we had the last couple of days, 30-mile-an-hour winds that couldn't really even go out on the golf course. Just hoping that it wasn't going to be like that during the tournament. With ten-mile-an-hour winds, you can be aggressive, especially with holes that are a little bit into the wind, you can fly the ball back into the pin.

Q. When you have the "next big thing" tag tacked on you at the beginning of your career, did it have any affect on you?
CHAD CAMPBELL: Honestly, I really don't. I don't pay that much attention to it. I obviously have not done as much as I would like to since I've been on TOUR, but I'm only 34. I have a little ways to go, so hopefully I can win a few more times before I'm done.

Q. Were you aware that the course was yielding scores before you went off, and if so, was that a factor?
CHAD CAMPBELL: Not so much before I went off. You know, you can kind of see it when you're out there. You can see some guys making birdies. Jim played really well today; Hunter and Larry Mize had a great round, Shingo, a lot of scores. Tim Clark shot 4-under pretty early. I think he was out pretty early.
So obviously you see those kind of scores, you know there's birdies to be made. You definitely have to be cautious, too, of being overaggressive.

Q. What has the last year or so been like for you, a child and even changing clubs, and also your decision to go to Shady Oaks?
CHAD CAMPBELL: Yeah, I've had a lot going on the last couple years. First and foremost, probably the birth of my child; he's seven months now. He's doing great. They were out last week. They didn't make it out this week.
You know, he's doing awesome. It definitely changes your life, as everybody knows that has kids. They try to tell you, but you don't listen. You don't know it till you're going through it.
But he's awesome. He's doing great. My wife's doing great.
I've been at Shady Oaks for almost two years now, so it's just an awesome place to be. All of the people out there are great, and just kind of let me do what I want to do. The pros out there are all good guys. I think it's a good spot for me to be.
Was there one other part to that question?

Q. The practice area there, the Hogan practice area, was that appealing to you and has that helped you at all?
CHAD CAMPBELL: Absolutely. To go out there, that's kind of the way I grew up, hitting my own range balls and then picking them up. It's kind of get out by yourself and work on it with nobody else around. So it definitely appealed to me.

Q. Have you ever made five birdies in a row on the PGA TOUR?
CHAD CAMPBELL: I think I have. I couldn't tell you where. I don't think I've done it to start the round.

Q. You mentioned earlier that there were more players having good rounds today; was this something you were expecting yesterday looking forward to today?
CHAD CAMPBELL: I think everybody kind of knew the weather was going to be pretty good, light winds, ten-mile-an-hour winds or so.
So when it's like that, you know, you can definitely shoot some scores if you're playing well and making putts. You know, you've got to make putts out here to score well. The greens are always tough to putt. They are a little bit less difficult to putt, obviously, when the wind is not blowing. I think that is the hardest part when it is windy is putting on the fast greens.

Q. You had mentioned the first tee box, and several players mentioned that. Were there other examples of tees that looked like they were up, or pins?
CHAD CAMPBELL: The pin on 2 was in the front. Pretty much you always have that pin. You just kind of never know when you're going to have it.
You know,3 was in the back, which is probably the easiest pin on that green. You can be aggressive to that pin, and the other ones, you're kind of just trying to keep it on the green.
But tee box-wise, they had it up on 7 a little bit. Trying to think offhand; it was on the front part of 10. That's not a very big tee box. Maybe 11 as well, front part of that box.

Q. Can we get birdies and bogeys, please?
CHAD CAMPBELL: You want me to go through what I hit?

Q. Yardages.
CHAD CAMPBELL: No. 1, driver, 7-iron from 167, I believe, to about two feet.
2, driver, 4-iron from 240-ish.
3 was 3-wood, sand wedge from 92, 93 to five feet.

Q. Did you scare eagle on 2?
CHAD CAMPBELL: I think it ran past the hole. I landed it short and it was kind of behind the right bunker. Had probably 30 feet.
4, I hit 2-iron to -- it was probably 18, 20 feet, just off the left side of the green.
5 was driver, 7-iron to about 15 feet.
12, 8-iron to roughly five feet.
13, 3-wood, 5-iron, 60 to about 70 yards and hit that to about ten feet.
14, driver, 9-iron, 12 feet.
15, driver, 3-wood just over the back of the green and chipped it up to a foot, six inches.
LARRY PUGH: Thank you.

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