Wyndham interview: Patrick Reed

August 18, 2013

MORE INTERVIEWS: Wyndham transcripts archive

DOUG MILNE:  All right. We'd like to go ahead and get started.  I'd like to welcome the 2013 Wyndham Championship winner, Patrick Reed.
Patrick, congratulations on your first PGA TOUR victory.  I know that's got a good sound to it.
With the win you pick up 500 FedExCup, move to No. 22 in the standings which gets you through at least the BMW Championship.  Also something I know that has a good sound to it.
4-under 66 today in the final round.  Good enough to get the job done in extra holes and a few minutes ago we had Jordan Spieth in here and he said that your second shot, in his opinion, 10th hole in the playoff was one of the most unbelievable shots he's every seen.  That pretty much probably sums the week up for you and with that I'll turn it over to you for some comments.

You know, I mean I thank Jordan for that.  It was the best shot of my life, that's for sure, on the 10th but his putt he made on 18, the first playoff hole I told my wife he's going to make it and, you know, of course I say that and the odds of making a 25, 30-footer breaking probably two feet.
To do that and put the pressure back on me meant a lot to him but, at the same time, you know I told my wife and told my coach going into today that I had to shoot 4-under to win and I was right, 4-under did win but, at the same time, I had to do it in a playoff.  I still don't know really what's going on.  I mean it's unreal.

DOUG MILNE:  With that we'll open it up and take some questions.  Start with Andrew.Q.  Talk us through No. 10.  Jordan said someone signaled an out of bounds.



Q.  Is that right?  Who was that?

One of the volunteers said that the ball is out of bounds because they didn't see the other stake that was next to my ball.  So they thought it was just the two stakes rather than the third and, you know, when I hit the drive yeah, I had pushed it a little bit.
I thought it was down in the rough.  To watch it fly all the way into the tree about halfway in it, I was shocked.  I got the signal it was out of bounds my heart sank.
I grinded so hard this week, I mean not only to play well and give myself a chance to win but also for all the hard work my wife and I have done throughout the whole year and all last year, I knew that this was the time and my coach kept telling me this is the time, this is the week and, you know, if I didn't close that out and win it I would have been heartbroken.  To do that for my wife meant everything to me.

Q.  How did you discover it wasn't out of bounds?

I discovered it when all of a sudden three, four other people starting running out on the fairway and gave me the safe signal.  I hit a provisional anyways just in case.  I wouldn't have wanted to go all the way back to the tee and have to hit again.
So, you know, got up there and I saw it was in bounds.  Actually had a wire next to my ball.  I was able to mark it and move the wire.  The ball moved.  Put it back.
And, you know, basically felt like I was back playing T-ball.  The ball was so far above my feet that it almost felt like I was taking a baseball swing.  I couldn't start it out, right.  I had trees.  I had a tree overhanging.  Couldn't see the flag.  I saw the two blue towers behind the green.
I knew that anything was on the right edge of the tower.  That literally was two yards left of the tree trunk and set-up and do what my swing coach told me to do, you know, work on -- really, timing everything up, getting in a good pattern and being able to hold that shot off.  It's so hard for me to do that because I play draws.  To be able to work hard and actually pull it off meant everything.

Q.  What club?

  It was a three quarter 7-iron.  It was a full 8-iron distance but if I try to hit something hard that thing would have been gone left.  We clubbed up one and I pulled it off.

Q.  Was it around the trees or --
Actually went underneath the tree I was at.  There's two trees in front of me but they weren't really in play.  The ball is going to get over that.  The problem was the tree that I had to go under, the tree trunk was right there.  I really had to hit the ball dead straight and couldn't draw and from a baseball lie.

Q.  150?

I think it was 163.  163 to cover that ridge and 167 flag.

Q.  How long was the putt?

  Probably six feet.  Felt like it was 40 (laughter).

Q.  What was the lie like up there under the tree?  High needle and mulch?  What was it like?

Little bit of dirt, couple pieces of grass, twigs, couple spiders.  Basically anything you'd find in a wilderness, it seemed like many.  The lie was fine.  I had good contact on the back of the ball.  I knew I could control the spin.  I had to make sure I made a great golf swing and it worked.

Q.  Patrick, going into today, yesterday you said that you have entering with Monday qualifiers.  What was your mindset going into the playoff then?

  Same thing.  Jordan has been in the playoff in a PGA tournament before.  He knew what to expect.  I played with Jordan a hundred times, amateur golf and everything.  He's a good friend of mine.
I felt comfortable in that aspect but standing over a putt for 900-something-thousand dollars, your first win, going to the Masters, getting into the Tournament of Champions, getting to 22nd in FedEx, that first putt I had to actually win it on 18, you know, I can't say I wasn't nervous.  Of course I was.
I felt like I hit a good putt but the thing is when you have that short of a putt downhill with how fast the greens are, you can't be aggressive with it.
So I literally had to just tap on it because if it did happen to miss, I didn't want to stare at a 5, 6-footer to stay in it.  Unfortunately it dove a little low but the next one I was all right, hit a great drive on 18.  You hit a great iron shot.  Felt like I hit a good putt.  Just do it again.
Unfortunately the drive went a little right.  Didn't expect it to go where it was.  Another great iron shot.  This time I made the putt.

Q.  Patrick, how were you able to regroup when it wasn't out of bounds?  Did that kind of help in some respect?  Hitting it out of bounds it would have been over.

Right.  When it was out of bounds, when they signaled out of bounds my heart sank.  I was about to burst out right there.
I pulled the hat down and I was just -- I was so frustrated, frustrated and sad and then next you know when I look up I see Justine walking back and the look on her face.  Just like I love my family now.  Then all of a sudden to get four people run out to the fairway and going safe, I was like all right, let's go do it.
I honestly was just going to try to make par due to the fact of how that was sitting.  I was hoping to get it on the green before I even got up to the ball.  I was like let's try to get on the green because I knew the trees overhung.  I was like try to get on the green, try to two-putt.  Hopefully he doesn't make another 40-footer on me.
It happened that he got a roar and I knew he got up to the top level.  With the sound of the roar it was, I knew it wasn't extremely close.  I knew it was close because that top level isn't big at all and so I knew I had to do it.
I had to step up and hit the shot that I've been fighting all year, you know, the dead straight golf shot.  I don't see straight lines.  I see curves.  To set-up and try to hit a dead straight golf shot from a baseball lie was going to be do or die.  I don't know how I pulled it off.

Q.  You said that you and Jordan played a lot of golf as juniors.  We saw him give you a thumbs up.  What did he say to you when you got to the green?

  "Amazing shot, great shot."  I said the same to him when I got up there, you know, he only had eight, ten feet, you know, especially after he hit the putt on 18.  This is good for him.  He hit a great putt.  I had that putt earlier today and, you know, he actually read enough break.  He burned it on the high side.  I didn't earlier.  I missed it low.  For him to actually read enough break in that putt was surprising.

Q.  Patrick, was it tough to regroup after the playoff, after 18 on the playoff because it looks like you're in the driver's seat and you get up to the green and all of a sudden the roles are reversed on No. 10.

Yeah.  You know, I mean I was just like all right.  After I missed that putt I was like whatever.  I felt like I hit a good drive, a great iron shot and great putt.  Now it just happened that the guy I was playing with did the exact thing that you're going to do in match play.
You're going to think he's out of it and he's going to go ahead and drain a long putt.  I mean I dealt with that all through college.  I felt like it helped with the match play situation.  6-0 in college in match play.
I've had a lot of situations where it's a one hole thing and he looks like he's out of it but pulls it off.  Normally I'm the guy that's sitting in stuff and having to do some miraculous.  I did it on 10, so --
Q.Patrick, with your ties to Augusta, being a professional golfer, how hard has it been to kind of keep that out of your mind and have you done that in fact or do you think about it all the time?

  I mean any professional golfer is going to think about it being able to play in the Masters especially as Augusta National where you have Arnold, Jack, you know, all the legends playing and you know played there and it never changes.  It's always at the same course.
You know, I can't wait.  I mean I have butterflies thinking about it.  I played it three times with the schools.  But that's when it's wet, cold.  You're hitting driver, 3-wood or hybrid into 11.  When you're watching the pros they hit a driver, 7-iron, 6-iron.  I can't wait.  Just to get my first win means everything to me.

Q.  Patrick, Justine says she's gets all of the check and then she was just kidding.  Talk about her and what she's been able to the for you.

What hasn't she been able to do for me?  I mean she gave up -- she didn't really give up, she put her career that she worked so hard to get, her two Bachelor's Degrees in school through nursing and health administration into -- to put that on hold and to come out and carry my bag and be with me, I mean I'm lucky.
There's not a lot of men that can say that out here.  I mean I'm just so lucky to have somebody like that and she's such a fierce competitor and she's always so composed that it feeds on me.  It gets me going, gets me playing well.
If I start going south, like yesterday I was three over quick, and to be able to pull it back and be even going into the last hole and bogeying the last, felt like I hit a lot of good golf shots on the last hole to make bogey.
There's not enough to say about her.

Q.  Can you talk a little bit about the momentum you have going into The Playoffs?

I have all the momentum in the world coming off a win, playing like I have.  My last three events, I have I mean two Top-10s and a win.
So, I mean I haven't finished outside the Top-10.  Never played in The Playoffs before.  I have nothing to lose.  I secured literally every goal that we had this year.  Our goal was to secure our card.  I did that.  Then it was to get to Barclays and Playoffs.  I did that.  Then it was to get to Conway Farms, I did that.  Then, you know, once we switched to Callaway, I said I want to win and I did that.  So, I mean I got my first Major now for next year.
So, literally it's just -- the momentum is just -- and the confidence is out of the roof.  I can't wait to play next week.  I have to come off my high, that's for sure and I'm going to try to do that tomorrow.  I'm going to let it soak in all night and probably soak in most of tomorrow.  Probably come off Tuesday, get back in the thing and start playing some golf and going out and doing what I've been doing.  Just grinding, working hard, you know, and enjoying the time I have with my wife out there with me.

Q.  Considering what you had to go through to get out here, what's the most gratifying part?

Good question.  I'd have to say that just to be out here -- when I was young I always wanted to play as a professional and get out here and all of a sudden win, secure my card for two years, to be out here with my wife -- I mean I see so many of these guys that they're with their wives for a week, then they go off on the road for four, five weeks in a row.  They don't see their families for a long time.
That's going to take a toll on you.  And for me to be able to have mine with me at all times, it means everything to me because I know she's safe.  If anything would happen, I'm always there.  I mean it's just security.

Q.  What was the hardest stretch last year?

The hardest stretch last year would have probably been the -- I mean Q-School is unbearable.  Q-School is never fun.  That probably took 20 years off my life "laughter", especially with how I did it.
The first two days we were 120th or 130th-something place going in and we shot 18-under the last four rounds, 5-under, 4 -- 4-under, 5-under, 4-under, 5-under, I think.
We shot 5-under the last round to get on the number.  That was extremely hard.  But also at the very beginning when we started -- actually because we went from Valero, we went up there prepared to the qualifier.  Got the exemption.  Played, made the cut.  We didn't drive, Justine drove all night from Valero Sunday night to Louisiana.
We got in, had two to three hours of sleep.  Had to get up, play a Monday qualifier.  Made it in a playoff.  Won in the playoff and then played in that tournament, made the cut.  Played well, then flew and got in at 1 in the morning into Greenville, South Carolina, stayed at my agent's parents' house.
Had Peach Delight "laughter" and then after that -- by the way -- after that, we had five hours sleep that night, then we drove an hour and a half to the Monday.
Went into the Monday and had a 20-footer on the last hole to avoid a, I think it was 6 for 2 spot playoff.  I saw it going one way.  She saw it going the other.  I decided to listen to her.  Poured it in the center of the cup.
So then we had to go and play in that event.  After that, we flew -- that was Wells Fargo.  After Wells Fargo we flew back to Louisiana and we had to play the U.S. Open first day qualifier.
So I mean that stretch was unbearable.  I don't know how we did it.  It was so tough.  Between that and Q-School, I don't know how I'm still here.

Q.  Can you speak a little about how the course was after all the rain we had last night?

See, I slept so hard last night I didn't even know we had rain until we were literally halfway here to the golf course and we had a text to us that it was an hour delay.
You know, the course didn't look any different.  Yeah, it was really wet but it was really wet yesterday.  The greens were still the same firmness.  They're still consistently firm and there aren't that many spike marks.
They were still fast and very pure and even with all the rain they got that's usually the first thing that goes is the greens will go bad because it's hard to keep those in good shape.  The way they did that was amazing.

Q.  What role did Augusta State kind of play in your career?

It was huge.  I mean being at Augusta State, always being the underdog, had the mindset you have nothing to lose and that's basically how I played all year this year, I have nothing to lose.
You know, played with Bubba, played with Zach, played with Zach again today.  Played with John Huh who won last year at an event.
To play with all these other winners I'm always the underdog and to get out and hear, when we were playing at Travelers just the roars that Bubba was having just by walking up on a tee, to play with John Deere with Zach at his home event, basically to hear the roars he was getting.
It felt just like how it did when we were at Augusta State.  It was always everyone was rooting for everyone else.
And to be able to come out and play, you know, basically with no fear, go for it all, it worked this week.  I mean I'm just going to keep playing like that.
I'm going to play like I have nothing to lose because I don't.  That's how I was at college and that's what Josh pushed really hard on us, we have nothing to lose, we're expected to lose this match, we're expected to play bad in this event.  "Y'all are better than everybody.  You can do it."
I mean we have two guys on PGA TOUR this year.  We had Henrik Norlander and myself.  To have that same team and to win the NCAA two years in the row, to beat Oklahoma State two years in row, to beat Georgia Tech, to beat all these top teams I mean just brought confidence into my game and also, so far, my career.

Q.  Who is your swing coach and how long have you worked together?

  Kevin Kirk from The Woodlands.  I basically completely switched my golf swing right before last year before we started the Monday qualifiers.  Actually I switched it probably February to Kevin Kirk last year and we've worked so hard with him and he's such a great guy.
I mean to be able to go in and win one for him, win one for The Woodlands and everybody there that's been rooting us on non-stop, the support system we have.  Win one for my mother-in-law, Connie, who is doing everything for us at home.  I mean everything.  She's taking care of the house, taking care of literally everything and win one for my wife.  To win one for Callaway, for my agents.  The list goes on and on for all the people that have been behind us and have helped us.

Q.  Just to clarify, your shot on 10 you said 167 yards?

  63 cover, 67 flag, I think.

Q.  I think ShotLink said 151.

  I hope my stuff wasn't that far off.  You know, the hole plays 8 yards uphill, though.  I haven't been out here enough to know ShotLink takes that into consideration or not but there's 8 yards uphill and I know I was in between a step and gave myself that extra yard on that step due to the fact that the circumstance I was in.

DOUG MILNE:  All right.  Patrick, congratulations.