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April 3, 2012

Patrick Cantlay


LARRY PUGH:テつ Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen.テつ It's my pleasure to welcome to our interview room the No. 1 ranked amateur, Patrick Cantlay.テつ Patrick is making his first Masters debut, having qualified by virtue of his runner‑up finish at the 2011 U.S. Amateur.テつ He was also runner‑up at the Western Amateur and has performed very well in several professional events already.
Patrick is a sophomore at UCLA, and we are delighted to have him here this week.テつ Before we get going with questions, I would like to ask Patrick, how does it feel to be competing in your first Masters?
PATRICK CANTLAY:テつ Yeah, it's great.テつ It's a dream come true to play here at Augusta, and to play as an amateur makes it even more special.

Q.テつ I take it you're staying at the Crow's Nest?

Q.テつ And what's that experience like for you?テつ Apologize if it sounds like an obvious thing, but do you think you can win this tournament?
PATRICK CANTLAY:テつ Yeah, staying in the Crow's Nest is great.テつ Coming in on Sunday night, I came in late and no one was around.テつ I saw Kelly and Corbin up there, we are the only three staying up there this week.テつ It's not too crowded or anything.テつ It's really special waking up in the morning and seeing the place empty.テつ It's pretty cool.
Yeah, I do feel like I can win this week.テつ I feel like any tournament I tee it up in, if I play well, I have a chance to win.

Q.テつ What have the guys around you, John Merrick, Cook and Goydos told you about this week?テつ What advice are they giving you?
PATRICK CANTLAY:テつ Cook's, you know, golf is just golf no matter where you're playing, Long Beach City Amateur or theテつ Masters.テつ So either way, it's still get the ball in the hole as fast as you can.
Merrick said a couple things about the golf course about a couple different holes, because he played ‑‑ I think he played well one year.

Q.テつ Your experience with the U.S. Open and going through what a Major Championship was like, how has that helped you as you've been preparing, do you think, for this week?
PATRICK CANTLAY:テつ I think it's helped me a lot, especially getting comfortable and not being overwhelmed by the atmosphere of the tournament.テつ So it's nice that it's not my first major as well as my first Masters.

Q.テつ Patrick, how difficult is it not to think about turning pro?テつ I know you sort of try to keep the focus straight ahead, but does it get more and more difficult the more you're out here and obviously being here this week?
PATRICK CANTLAY:テつ Not really.テつ I really like trying to prepare for every tournament as best I can.テつ So I think that takes up most of my time, most of my focus.テつ I'm not really worried about what the future is, because if I stay really engaged in the present, then the future will take care of itself.

Q.テつ What about when you're off the golf course?テつ A little harder?
PATRICK CANTLAY:テつ Maybe, yeah.テつ When I'm off the golf course, I try not to think about golf at all.テつ I spend enough time on the golf course worrying about it.

Q.テつ By the time the Tournament comes around on Thursday, how many practice rounds will you have logged here?テつ And related to the previous question, do agents try to recruit you or somehow entice you to look at it harder, turning pro?
PATRICK CANTLAY:テつ I've played‑‑ let's see, today was probably my seventh or eighth round out here.テつ And then to your other question, I'm letting my swing coach, Jamie, and my dad worry about that stuff.テつ I'm not really worried about that.テつ I'm just worried about getting the ball in the hole.

Q.テつ What's been the most surprising part of this course that maybe you didn't expect?
PATRICK CANTLAY:テつ Definitely the green undulations, you can't see any of that stuff on TV.テつ A lot of the greens are big on paper and in real life are not very big.テつ Your landing areas are very small.テつ That was the biggest, I guess, shock coming here.テつ I've adjusted pretty well, and I feel comfortable coming into the greens.

Q.テつ Your game overall, you were at such a high level last summer.テつ Do you feel you're in a similar position?
PATRICK CANTLAY:テつ I'm hitting it really well and stroking it really well, too.テつ Yeah, my game feels really good right now.

Q.テつ You told me last summer when you got away from the course, you like just to play video games with your buddies.テつ Had you ever played the Masters video game?
PATRICK CANTLAY:テつ I don't play too many video games, but I do try and just chill out and relax with my friends.テつ So I haven't played the video game, no.

Q.テつ What was sort of the first thing that went through your head when you kind of first set foot on the grounds here, first thought maybe, if you can remember it?
PATRICK CANTLAY:テつ I was just surprised at how big the place felt and how big and open it was when you stepped up there like on the first tee.テつ On TV it looks really tree‑lined and narrow, but out here you can see all of the other holes and it feels open, especially 9 and 18 greens when there's no people and no grandstands.テつ It's just there and there's no framing other than the bunkers.

Q.テつ When you've been working on things with your game over the course of the last few months, is there anything specific that you've been doing in preparation specific for this week?
PATRICK CANTLAY:テつ I've been trying to hit a bunch of putts that break a lot, short ones, so I get comfortable seeing it right‑to‑left, a bunch, and left‑to‑right.テつ So that, and I've hit a bunch of lobs and chips, especially here.テつ They have a great practice facility here.テつ I spent a bunch of time over there.

Q.テつ You've had obviously some pretty good accomplishments early in your career, 60 at Hartford.テつ What did you do on the first hole when you stuck it in the ground here for the first time.テつ Can you just walk me through that maybe?
PATRICK CANTLAY:テつ Yeah, I was out here with my dad and my grandfather and a member, Jim Hoch.テつ I just remember it being really special being here with my dad and my grandpa, because they introduced me to the game and I played a lot of golf with them when I was younger.
It was really fun and really cool to share that with them.

Q.テつ What did you make on the first hole?
PATRICK CANTLAY:テつ I don't remember.テつ Par or bogey probably.
LARRY PUGH:テつ Patrick, we wish you well this week.テつ Good luck.

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