What they said: Brandt SnedekerApril 24, 2011
PGA TOUR staff
MORE INTERVIEWS: The Heritage transcript archive
JOHN BUSH: We'd like to welcome 2011 Heritage champion, Brandt Snedeker into the interview room. Brandt, congratulations, quite a week, quite a final round. Just get your thoughts on the day.
BRANDT SNEDEKER: You know, I did not envision sitting in this room when I teed off at noon. I didn't have really any expectations today, at all. I went out there and I worked really hard with my instructor last night for a couple hours after we got done. I didn't play very well yesterday. Came out today and just kind of everything clicked. I drove the ball fantastic. Came up with a lot of birdie opportunities. I think I only missed a couple of greens out there on the golf course. I was really striking the golf ball pretty well. I rolled it the way like I've been rolling it for the last month, just fantastic. Got good looks at it.
It's a storybook ending really, to be playing Luke in a playoff, to even have a chance to win was exciting to me. And Luke is trying to get No. 1 in the world and I know what the meant to him. I'm sure he'll be at No. 1 in the world at some point because he's that kind of class player. But to be able to beat him was really special. It made it that much more exciting.
JOHN BUSH: Just solid play all year. You move up to No. 2 in the FedEx Cup standings. You've been knocking on the door for several weeks now. How long ago does 2007 seem to be?
BRANDT SNEDEKER: A long time. I know it's been four years, it seems a lot longer than that. I can't put it into words how much this win means to me, because the first one was my rookie year. You come out here and don't really know what to expect. To win like that was kind of out of nowhere. And to win this time, after all the hard work I put in the last three or four years, trying to improve, trying to get better, I feel like my game is finally there, especially with a newborn at home and everything that entails. I'm sure there's no secret that that's probably the reason why I won, was having that distraction, having that, I guess, comfort at home, knowing that I've got a family now and how special that is, and how fortunate we are to have that.
I give her full credit. She doesn't know yet. She slept through the whole thing this afternoon. But I'll be able to see her before too long.
Q. What did you do during the break? And how much were you watching the action?
BRANDT SNEDEKER: That was the longest two hours of my life. It was brutal. I tried to watch some of the golf, but then I never want to root against anybody, so it became hard to watch the golf, because I don't want them to do bad, but I don't want them to do great, either. I went outside, talked on my phone to a few people and really talked about anything but golf, and just try to forget about what was going on. I had a feeling there was going to be a playoff and then I was getting prepared for that. So I never really had a thought that I was going to win right out.
Q. When you post the number, do you think you've got a chance at that point??
BRANDT SNEDEKER: I had no clue. I really didn't. I didn't look at the leaderboard all day. I literally thought that guys would play 13, 14 when I finished, 13 or 14-under par. When I saw I was leading by one I was shocked. I figured the front nine, there are reachable par-5s. Luke gets off to a fast start, as good as he's playing, he gets to 13, 14 really quick. It was really shocking when I got done to see that I was leading by a shot. I probably wouldn't have birdied the last hole if I had known I was leading by a shot. Very fortunate, I think.
Q. Have you ever worn a plaid sports jacket before??
BRANDT SNEDEKER: This is my first time. I think I look pretty good in it (laughter). I could get used to this.
Q. A couple of things: First of all, you didn't quite know where you stood at 18 in regulation. Did you know at some point after you turned at 30 that you were in the lead??
BRANDT SNEDEKER: Never. Never. Not a clue. I thought I was still a couple back.
Q. You thought people were moving the same way you were??
BRANDT SNEDEKER: Yeah, I felt the pins were more accessible today. The greens were firm, but two par-5s on the front nine, and get a couple there. 9 was not easy today, but it wasn't hard. I kind of survived.
Jim Furyk, I played with him at the Masters. I thought he played fantastic at the Masters, and we had a couple of bad holes and played awesome otherwise. Luke was playing fantastic, I figured one of those two guys were doing something on the front nine, just because of the world class players they are. That's why I was so shocked.
Q. What did you hit into 18 for your two playoff holes??
BRANDT SNEDEKER: 9-iron all three times. I was within a yard. All my divots were within a yard of the pin.
Q. You said you knew how much being No. 1 would mean to Luke. Could you put yourself in his shoes now??
BRANDT SNEDEKER: I just told him he's going to be No. 1. Sorry it didn't go the right way for him. He's that kind of player. I've played against him in college and he's a world class player. So it makes it sweet today to be in a playoff.
Q. Talk about the first playoff hole. Luke makes his putt and talk about what you were thinking about.
BRANDT SNEDEKER: Yeah, it's the putt you'd like to have, a right edge putt, a little outside for a right-hand player. It was a pretty easy putt in that regard. I couldn't feel my hands in the other regards, so that made it a hard putt. But I told myself, I knew Luke felt the same way over his putt. If you want to be a good player, you've got to learn how to make these. You've got to figure it out. At the end of the day I didn't want to lose that way. So just excited to see the ball go in the middle.
Q. Was it at all difficult, you play a long round today, the fourth straight day in a row, then you take a two-hour break, was it difficult to loosen back up??
BRANDT SNEDEKER: No, because it was so warm. The hardest thing is to get my mind back. I was excited to get in the playoff and then start all over again. He's one of the best players in the world. You really have to get your mind ready to go and realize what you're getting ready to do.
Q. You're making a charge, and then you took a step back at 13, and thought maybe that's it, and then you make another birdie and then you take another step back at 16. Did you start to think I'm blowing my chance here at any point??
BRANDT SNEDEKER: No, you know, that's funny, I've done that before a couple of other Sundays. San Antonio I made a few birdies early and got up there in the lead and made a few bogeys. I knew the back nine was playing tougher. I knew it would be hard to make birdies. I knew if I could somehow get it in with a couple of birdies down that stretch. Stayed patient, you know, I knew I was playing good, what's the worst that could happen?
Q. Despite how you described how you hit it yesterday, you weren't very happy with it, is this maybe the best stretch of golf you've ever played??
BRANDT SNEDEKER: I think consistency-wise throughout the year it's the best I've played. I've been telling people that for three months, it's the best I've played in my career. But you're missing cuts. I know. I don't know how to explain it. It's golf. That's what it does to you, it drives you crazy. And that's what makes it so special. It's nice to not play my best golf, obviously, the first three days, and come out and put one great round together, and get yourself right, and know I can win a golf tournament when I'm not playing my best.
And playing great, I had one great day today but I had a really bad day yesterday, and two good days before that. So you don't have to play perfect golf for four rounds, that's what this is teaching me.
Q. Did you wake up this morning and think, you know what, I've got this round in me and I can make something happen??
BRANDT SNEDEKER: No, not really. I woke up with no expectations whatsoever. I was more worried about how I was going to get to New Orleans on Monday than I was with what this round entailed.
But, you know, when I won at the Wyndham, it's the same kind of deal. I was four or five back going in the last round and I played a great round of golf. Luckily this golf course leads itself to that. You shoot a great round, and get really hot and get a couple of breaks. It's tough to shoot a couple under par on this golf course. It's really demanding. I didn't play in the toughest conditions. I had two hours before they did, the greens were softer and better. That makes a difference, a huge difference.
Q. Luke's chip on 18 on the last playoff hole, it looked like it was going in.
BRANDT SNEDEKER: Yeah, it did. It kind of scared me a little bit. You never want to think that you've won. You always want to be prepared for the next playoff hole. I was liking my chances but I saw it come off and go to the right side of the hole, and unbelievable. Give me a chance. I've hit three good shots. I haven't played perfectly. You've won a bunch, let me win one. Come on, help me out.
Q. As you sit there the tournament's future is up in the air, how much do you want to come back and defend your title??
BRANDT SNEDEKER: You know, I think not just me, I think just how special this tournament is, everybody in the field wants to come back here next year, not just me. I love this golf course. I said I've loved it ever since I've been on Tour. And I think a hundred percent of the guys want to be back here next year. The Tour wants to be back here. There's nothing like being at Hilton Head this time of year and playing the Heritage. It's a great tradition. The golf course is so perfect. It's so unlike the golf courses we play on Tour. And after having seen this course on TV the last four days, I can't imagine not to being a part of it.
Q. You were injured last year, obviously affected your golf swing. Does frustration set in when you can't do what you want to do??
BRANDT SNEDEKER: Yeah, it's not fun when you're 30 years old and your body is not a hundred percent healthy. I never had to worry about aches and pains my whole career and then all of a sudden I had to have surgery. And you can't do what you want to do, you can't hit balls when you want to practice, you can't work out the way you want. You can't do anything you want to. And it becomes frustrating, because you see what level of golf you should be play at, you can't get there because you can't do it. That's why I took time off to make sure I get healthy. I feel great. When you feel great, and you have confidence and do the right stuff, stuff happens.
Q. I saw something on Twitter that maybe you said out on the green, something about a green jacket and a plaid jacket??
BRANDT SNEDEKER: Yeah, I said those are two jackets I want to earn in my lifetime, a green jacket, and a plaid jacket. I've got one.
JOHN BUSH: Brandt, once again, congratulations.