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April 25, 2014

Ben Martin


THE MODERATOR:テつ Welcome Ben Martin back to the media center.テつ You were just here a couple hours ago, but now you're here after a second‑round 67, and you have the new record through 36 holes at TPC Louisiana for this tournament.テつ So maybe you could start off by just telling us, you know, an overall assessment of the game through the first couple rounds and then we'll open it up for a couple questions.
BEN MARTIN:テつ Yeah, overall, I don't think it could have gone much better.テつ Yesterday ten birdies, eight pars, no complaints.テつ Today I got off to a hot start, birdie, eagle, par, birdie, so I was 4‑under through four.テつ Maybe got a little bit ahead of myself on the last couple holes of the opening nine making a bogey and a double bogey on 18.テつ So my caddie, Alex and I, were talking down the first fairway.テつ I was like, you know, yesterday I felt like I really stayed in the moment on every shot.テつ I wasn't worried about what had happened previously or what was coming up.テつ Just try to do that again on this nine.
Executed most every shot, just like I wanted to on the last nine holes and I shot 4‑under.テつ Only two hiccups were a couple three‑putts on 18 and 2, and other than that, I'm extremely pleased.

Q.テつ After making the turn on 18, did you kind of have a talk with yourself on the way to 1 or anything like that?テつ You seemed like you got back right on top of it.
BEN MARTIN:テつ I don't know if I had a talk with myself, but I was like, all right, this is a new nine holes.テつ You know, it's turned around like I've been doing, like I've been playing all week.テつ I didn't have to change anything because I've been playing well.テつ I was just kind of erasing, really, the three‑putt.テつ The drive was bad but almost crossed the hazard.テつ Ended up having to drop back by the tee box.テつ But if I had gotten out of there two putts and a 6, I would have been happy, but the three‑putt was more what was a little frustrating.

Q.テつ Is this your first time through two rounds in the PGA with the lead?
BEN MARTIN:テつ I was tied for the lead the last week after Friday.

Q.テつ Okay, so you don't expect‑‑ how do you feel about being in this position?テつ How do you think it will affect you tonight going to sleep, stuff like that?
BEN MARTIN:テつ Hopefully, not at all.テつ I actually have a‑‑ I don't have anymore, but I have a scripture written in my yardage book from Galatians 6, and it kind of talks about basing your performance on how you're working and not worrying about what anybody else is doing, so I've been reading that kind of constantly throughout the round.テつ It's helping me just kind of not look up at the leaderboard and just say, hey, I'm going to go do what I've got to do and put in the work and add them up at the end.

Q.テつ Ben, you didn't have a whole lot of time between when you left here last night and coming back here.テつ Was that a good thing?テつ You just slept on it and came right back out here and played?テつ Was that good for you?
BEN MARTIN:テつ I think so.テつ We went straight to the Acme Oyster House last night to the player party and had fried oysters, raw oysters, chargrilled, a little bit of etouffee, jambalaya, so went to dinner, and pretty much shower and bed and got right back out here.テつ Yeah, it was nice.テつ I tried not to worry about if I had the early‑late or late‑early, but after a good round it was nice to not have to think about it too much and just get right back out here.

Q.テつ I know you talked yesterday about how maybe focusing on the results more than shot by shot and the process may have led to some of the missed cuts earlier in the year.テつ What was kind of the ah‑ha moment for you to change your thinking?
BEN MARTIN:テつ I'm always kind of an analytical guy, and tweaking week to week and what can I make a little bit better?テつ So I like to play around with weekly goals or yearly goals.テつ But really I changed my yearly goal to winning two times, to being top 30 in the FedExCup and playing the TOUR Championship.テつ So I wanted to win two tournaments.テつ So I was thinking about winning every week and I was missing cuts, so it was really frustrating.
But now when I kind of have that goal to be in Atlanta at the end of the year, then it's kind of a week‑by‑week deal where I can say, all right, I'm creeping up the FedExCup money list.テつ I think that takes a lot of the pressure off.

Q.テつ We're smack dab in the middle of the Pete Dye portion of the PGA TOUR schedule with Harbour Town last week and here this week and with THE PLAYERS in a couple.テつ Is there something about his design work that you like that seems to fit your eye considering how you played last week and how you're playing this week?
BEN MARTIN:テつ Yeah, I talked a little bit about that yesterday coming off the course.テつ I've played NCAA at Purdue was a Pete Dye course where I got through second stage the first time, my rookie year.テつ It was a Pete Dye course.テつ I'm not sure what it is but I think whatever he does just kind of fits my eye.テつ I feel like all these courses are really fair.テつ I think I'm a pretty smart player and I like to play my way around the course.テつ His courses you can do that and be successful.

Q.テつ Number 4 is playing tough.テつ Today you birdied it.テつ Is it a tough hole to play?テつ Kind of walk us through what you did there.
BEN MARTIN:テつ I like to hit pretty much every shot left to right, so that tee shot sets up perfect for me.テつ I can aim it at the bunkers in the left and cut it back in the fairway.テつ I birdied it two days in a row now.テつ I had 193 in today, and it was a perfect number to go ahead and free swing at a 6‑iron, 20‑something paces short.テつ I hit it to 4 or 5 feet.テつ I think the tee shot sets up well for me.

Q.テつ Can it really be as simple as changing your mindset from getting out of a cold spell where you missed 7 of 8 cuts to shooting 15‑under par for two days and leading by 4?テつ Is it really just one mental light that goes on?テつ It can't be that simplistic, right?
BEN MARTIN:テつ I don't have another good answer for you, really (laughing).テつ I don't really ever change my swing.テつ I don't really think a whole lot about mechanics.テつ To me it's more just really all it was was that's all I did is kind of change my goal at the end of the year.テつ I think it freed me up.テつ I wasn't as worried about where I was finishing.

Q.テつ After that great dinner last night you almost holed out on 1 and then eagle on 2, just to start and trying to stay within yourself, I guess.テつ Then also on 17, did you get distracted by ducks or something?
BEN MARTIN:テつ Yeah, first part of the question, the start.テつ Yeah, 4‑under through 4, it was nice to kind of validate what I did yesterday getting off to a hot start.テつ Then being 14‑under through 22 holes of the golf tournament was unfamiliar ground.テつ So I started thinking ahead a little bit, and I thought, man, maybe I can do this again?テつ Then on 17, yeah, somebody was putting ice in the cooler or something on the tee over on the 16 green, and I just heard it right when I was about to take it back.

Q.テつ So the ice man cooled you off then?
BEN MARTIN:テつ Yeah, that's a good way to put it.

Q.テつ Was that the 54‑degree sand wedge on the chip‑in again and the approach on 10?
BEN MARTIN:テつ On 11?

Q.テつ The chip‑in on 11, and the approach on 10 was almost in, right?
BEN MARTIN:テつ Yeah, 10 was a little into the wind today.テつ I hit 8‑iron, and 11 a bump and run, a 54‑degree, hit it in the fringe and it trickled in.

Q.テつ Twice with that club in two days?
BEN MARTIN:テつ Two in a row, yeah.テつ I thought I almost chipped in again on 7 today.テつ It slipped out.

Q.テつ What was the total message count last night on your cell phone after your course record round?テつ Any of them that really stood out to you?
BEN MARTIN:テつ I probably had 40 or 50.テつ I think my favorite, I didn't really get back and respond to many because it was such a quick turnaround.テつ But my favorite was a buddy back home.テつ He was like, "Dude, nice playing.テつ I haven't made that many birdies all year."テつ That one stuck out.テつ I've got to get on my cell phone this afternoon and respond to people.

Q.テつ Little longer wait for Saturday than for Friday.テつ How are you going to spend the day?テつ You went to Acme last night.テつ Any big plans?テつ Jazz Fest starts tonight.テつ Lot of options in town.
BEN MARTIN:テつ Yeah, we did get two tickets to Jazz Fest, so my wife and I may be there.

Q.テつ A follow‑up question on the Pete Dye question, still trying to play your way into THE PLAYERS, do you think about that as a goal at all or does that more tie into the goal of Atlanta at the end of the year?
BEN MARTIN:テつ I think that would just be a bonus.テつ I was talking with my agent last week, and I think where I stand now I'd be close to getting in, just depends on how many guys aren't playing.テつ But it's a tournament that everybody pretty much plays, so it's not really on my radar, but it would be a big perk to maybe slide in there.

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