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May 4, 2012

Webb Simpson


Q.  Another good day for you.  I thought you played better today than yesterday.
WEBB SIMPSON:  Yeah, I played pretty good today.  I couldn't quite make as many putts as I did yesterday, but all in all, it was a really solid day, no bogeys until the last, and through two rounds I'm pretty happy with where I am.

Q.  You play with a lot of confidence.  You know where the ball is going, don't you?
WEBB SIMPSON:  Yeah, we're doing the right stuff.  We're getting better, and that's all we care about, me and my caddie, so we're doing the right stuff.  Through two days we haven't made really any mental mistakes, which is what we want ultimately, so I'm pleased.

Q.  Talk about the caddie player relationship where you guys talk all the time out there, and it's really working.
WEBB SIMPSON:  Yeah, he's a great friend apart from work, and he's been a great player himself, great caddie, so he's helped me a ton on and off the course this last year and a half.  What he brings to the table is pretty intangible.

Q.  You live so close to the golf course.  Are you walking to the course every day?
WEBB SIMPSON:  Not quite.  A little too long for that, but it's a short drive.

Q.  A lot of relatives at the house and that sort of thing, and now you get to sleep late tomorrow?
WEBB SIMPSON:  Yeah, actually Nick Watney is staying with me, so if we're playing together it'll be fun‑‑ it'll be fun to go out with my roommate.

Q.  What was the difference today from yesterday?
WEBB SIMPSON:  Probably just a couple more putts dropping.  I made a few bombs yesterday, and that was probably really the only difference.  I hit some really good iron shots today.  The good thing we're doing, I think, is not making mental mistakes.  The two bogeys we've had in two days were not really mental mistakes.  If we can do that on the weekend, we should be in good shape.

Q.  Do you expect to see the low scoring to continue here on your home golf course this weekend?
WEBB SIMPSON:  Well, it's unbelievable.  I think the record here is 16‑under, but I think with the perfect conditions, low winds, humidity, greens are softer, I think you're going to see a lot of birdies this afternoon and probably will continue into the weekend.

Q.  You enjoy the ride, if you will, of playing with some of the best players in the world.  What was it like the first 36 holes here playing with Tiger?
WEBB SIMPSON:  It was great.  I got to know him at the Presidents Cup a little better, and he's a great guy, he's great to play with and fun to watch.  He and I and Geoff had a great time.  It was a really good pairing.  I would enjoy it again.

Q.  You've had a good week so far.  Talk about today's round.
WEBB SIMPSON:  Yeah, today was really similar to yesterday.  I played well.  Didn't quite make as many putts but still putted well, played well.  Unfortunately bogeyed the last hole, but that's going to happen on that hole, and through two rounds I'm really pleased.

Q.  What do you think is more important?  Do you think the way you're playing right now or how well you know this golf course?
WEBB SIMPSON:  I think both.  I think it's an advantage to know the sort of things that I know about this course, playing it so many times.  Coming off a good solid week last week, I'm pretty confident right now, and that's kind of what we look for.  You know, I think it's one of those weeks, though, that guys are going to compete and make birdies, where I feel tomorrow I might be two or three back, so I've got to keep the pedal down.

Q.  Did you actually play better today than yesterday, even though the score would be‑‑
WEBB SIMPSON:  Yeah, I probably hit a lot less loose shots today.  We feel like we've got the tee ball kind of more what we want.  Yeah, so overall a little more solid.  Just, again, I only birdied two of the par‑5s, which out here you want to get at least two, maybe three.  Yeah, overall it was pretty‑‑ it was a lot more boring today for sure.

Q.  Playing in front of family and friends can be overwhelming.  You seem to be inspired by it.  Can you talk about being home and playing in front of family and friends?
WEBB SIMPSON:  Yeah, you know, I had a hard time the first couple years with it, but I just understand they're all rooting for me, and it kind of mellows out when you're playing with Tiger because the crowds are huge.  It's harder to see the people I know, which probably makes it easier.  So yeah, it was fun, and I think the crowds, I'm sure, will continue to be big this weekend.

Q.  Why was it hard early on?
WEBB SIMPSON:  I think I was just putting too much pressure on myself my first couple years on TOUR.  I didn't know what it was like to play in front of your home crowd.  I got to hang of it finally in Greensboro in 2010.

Q.  Is this week any different or is it business as usual?
WEBB SIMPSON:  Yeah, it's business as usual.  There's a lot of distractions with, you know, you've got tons of friends and family around.  You've got to continue to do what you normally do on a normal week and carve out some time to see friends and family.

Q.  Is that easier to do than you thought or is it harder to do given all the‑‑
WEBB SIMPSON:  You know, I think it's just quietly not responding to text messages as quick.  I do a lot of responding on Monday morning.

Q.  Have you become Kryptonite to Tiger or something all of a sudden?  He's going to miss the weekend here.  Are you surprised at the way he played given Bay Hill and sort of what we all thought was happening?
WEBB SIMPSON:  Yeah, he just couldn't quite ever get it going.  I don't play with him‑‑ I've only played with him a few times, so I don't know his game that well.  But you know, he hit a lot of good shots, and I think it wouldn't surprise me at all if he's playing next week really well.
This course is tricky.  It's a lot trickier than people think and imagine.  You hit a couple loose shots like I did yesterday and don't get the bounces I got and you're looking at a lot of bogeys.  So I think that's what happened.

Q.  You said you might be two or three back by the end of the day.  How low do you expect guys to go?
WEBB SIMPSON:  Well, I don't think it's going to blow that much, but there's a 6‑, 7‑, 8‑, 9‑under out there, so any of the guys that shot 5 or 6 yet will go do that and they'll probably be leading by one or two.  And then again tomorrow morning the wind will probably be down, so they'll probably go do it again.

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