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March 10, 2011

Hunter Mahan


CHRIS REIMER: Hunter, 7-under today, a little weather here early in the day but you got out there and got on a roll. Just talk about probably optimal course conditions for a day like today.
HUNTER MAHAN: No question. I guess with that storm it brought some tranquility to the golf course, because there was just no wind. There was nothing out there. The course is in perfect shape. I was seeing there was a bunch of low scores; so good players and a good golf course and benign conditions, you're going to have some good scores.
CHRIS REIMER: If you could, maybe just talk about getting off to the hot start. You birdied the first four.
HUNTER MAHAN: Yeah started on 10 with a reachable par 5 and hit the green in two. Had about a 20-footer and 2-putted for birdie.
Made a long putt, about a 30-footer or so on 11.
I think I made about a 6-footer on 12.
The best Shot of the Day no, question, was on the par 3. I hit a 4-iron to about a foot. So that kind of kept the momentum going there.
Then I parred 14, 15. Birdied 16. Made about probably a 15-footer there, played the hole pretty well.
Birdied 17. Hit two good shots. Had about a 10-footer and birdied 1 from about ten or 12 feet.

Q. Where were you, I know you weren't starting your round yet, but where were you during the storm?
HUNTER MAHAN: I was just about to go to the putting green when they called it, and I noticed everybody was walking back into the clubhouse. So I saw the clouds; I assumed that they called it, and they did.

Q. In years past when you've had weather situations where you've had to stop and start, how have you done? Is it difficult for you to get started and stopped with the weather?
HUNTER MAHAN: You just have to be mentally prepared for it. It can be kind of sluggish I think, kind of starting and stopping and starting.
But you just have to be kind of mentally sharp when you get on that shot, just because it's not a normal Thursday, Friday, Saturday, you have to mentally get into it and kind of Jack yourself up a little bit and make sure that you realize that every shot still counts. Especially when you finish a round and you know that darkness is coming and you kind of want to get in.
So you've just got to stay focused on each shot out there and not let anything slip. Because, you know, for four days, there's a lot of shots, so you don't really want to give anything up.

Q. Did you know that the storm was doing that sort of damage or did you just find it out when you went out on the course?
HUNTER MAHAN: I was in my room. Came out, and I got a text from my caddie, John Wood. He sent me a picture of 9 and I saw the kind of destruction there and saw a few other pictures. You saw some of the trees kind of uprooted and stuff like that it. It seemed pretty severe. They said they had about 60-mile-an-hour winds. We are just glad nobody got hurt because that could be pretty ugly if somebody did. Luckily we got out of there and the only damage was to a few expensive cameras; so someone is going to have to foot the bill on that one.

Q. Were you thinking with the course conditions you had to make a lot of birdies or you would be behind off the bat?
HUNTER MAHAN: No, I felt pretty good about my game in general so I just wanted to go out there and play and let everything happen. I didn't want to put any expectations on myself.
I just kind of want to trust my game, trust my swing and just let everything kind of flow. I got off to a good start and that just kind of gives you a little confidence and gives you a little momentum. With the conditions the way they are you can be aggressive with a lot of pins and the greens, they are not that fast -- there's a few fast putts, but you can be pretty aggressive with anything inside 20 feet.

Q. You came close to 29; how many of those have you had?
HUNTER MAHAN: Gosh, maybe one or two. I had one in high school, but I don't know if I've had one as a pro. I think maybe once in Canada. Maybe in Canada, I'm not sure.

Q. Who are you rooting for tonight?
HUNTER MAHAN: Lakers. Dumb question. (Laughter).
CHRIS REIMER: Hunter, good playing, good luck tomorrow.

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