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THE HONDA CLASSIC

February 25, 2016

Sergio Garcia

Palm Beach Gardens, Florida

AMANDA HERRINGTON: We'd like to welcome Sergio García in after a career-low round here at The Honda Classic, you beat it by two shots.

SERGIO GARCIA: Didn't know that.

THE MODERATOR: Tough course and tough conditions in your sixth start. How does it feel to get off to a start like this.

SERGIO GARCIA: It's great. Like you said, it is a tough golf course. And with this wind conditions, it doesn't make it any easier. I guess the great thing was that it rained on Tuesday and a little bit yesterday, and we're a little bit lucky on that side to have the course a little bit softer.

But it's not going to get any easier as the week goes on. It looks like the winds might slow down a little bit, but yeah, it is a challenging golf course.

AMANDA HERRINGTON: Coming off a tough week, maybe you wanted a better finish, how does it feel to go ahead and rebound like this?

SERGIO GARCIA: Yeah, definitely. We have only started here, still a lot of rounds to go. But yeah, after a terrible week last week where I felt like I pretty much didn't do anything well, didn't play well, didn't chip well, didn't putt well, didn't do anything, so I guess it's nice to be able to play well.

I guess the positive thing from last week is that I birdied two of the last three holes, almost birdied the last three holes, so I guess a got a little momentum from there.

I'm excited about hopefully keep having a good week here.

Q. Just talk about the hole-out on 2, and also the shot on 10 when you were able to hook it out of the trees to get it close?
SERGIO GARCIA: Well, the hole-out on 2, it was really, really nice, obviously I hit a really good drive, which is a tough drive there. I think I had like 142 yards into the wind. Hit a strong 8-iron with a tiny little bit of a draw. It was nice to hole it.

Then on 10, I obviously drew it a little bit too much with the driver and unfortunately hit someone on the leg and went farther left. Left me, I think it was like 230 or 235 to the hole into the wind.

The good thing was the lie wasn't too bad and the wind was helping me to hook it, so I managed to hit a hooking 5-wood. It came out a little bit lower than I thought it would, but you know, just managed to hit it just short of the green and 2-putt, which I was very happy with.

Q. Talk about the shot out of the water.
SERGIO GARCIA: Yeah, that was probably one of my worst drives. I pulled it a little bit there. I was more worried about the alligator that was on the other side of the island than getting out of the water, because the ball, I could see probably half of it.

So I knew that I could get it out, didn't know how far out, but then I managed to hit a pitching wedge and came out a little bit low, but it got a little bit of run. Almost made 4, which would have been a great 4. I'm not going to lie, I was happy with a 5.

Q. The shot you hit on 10, how far did you have to hook it around there, and did you have any idea from the trees how good it was?
SERGIO GARCIA: I probably had to hook it, I would say, a good 40 yards. I couldn't see exactly where the ball finished because the sun was straight into our face, and it was difficult to see exactly how much it run.

But obviously I got some club, so I figured that it was somewhere on the green, and then my caddie, Glen, he saw it and he said, I think it's just short of the green there on the middle of the entrance of the green, so that was nice.

Q. When you have such a dissatisfying week like last week, how do you manage, how difficult is it and how do you manage your expectation coming into a like this? Do you come in wondering what I'm going to have this week or do you come in with confidence?
SERGIO GARCIA: No, I didn't come in with a lot of confidence. For sure, yeah, you are wondering a little bit, because usually my long game, it's up there, and even when I'm not playing great, I still can manage to get around it. But last week, I felt out of sorts.

I felt like I didn't feel comfortable with the swing. I didn't know what was going on, and was trying different things. But nothing was really, really making me feel that comfortable.

But, you know, I took it quite easy. I didn't really touch any clubs for four days, and got here and played Wednesday, or managed to play ten holes in the Pro-Am, but I felt quite good yesterday, the ten holes I played on high winds, too. So I guess that helped.

Q. It seemed like you and Rickie were feeding off each other a little bit during the course of that round.
SERGIO GARCIA: Yeah, we love playing together. It's always fun. Funny enough, we seem to play well when we play together. I don't know how many times this happened, but probably out of the last, I'm going to say, five or six times we played together, either I've holed out or he has holed out on that round.

So you know, today we managed to both do it. He holed a nice chip on 10 for par, and I holed an 8-iron. I don't know, it's one of those funny things that I guess happens.

Q. Speaking for a lot of people, you still seem like -- still feel like you're a pretty young guy but you've been around for a long time. Are you motivated by the Rickies and Jordans and the guys coming in here, and what does that do for you, does it energize you? Does it make you want to keep up?
SERGIO GARCIA: On the personal side, I think it makes me feel proud, because I see how great the level and the quality of players we have on tour nowadays is and on top of the world is. It's great to have four guys that are quite young. I guess Bubba moved to No. 4 last week, but putting Rickie there.

So it's great to have Jordan, Rory, Jason and Rickie that are young guys and good guys, they are genuine guys, and to be on top of our game, that's one of the best things for me.

Does it motivate me? Not really, because I have to do what I have to do at the end of the day and I have my own goals and motivations. But you know, when I look at the game of golf, I do feel very happy about, you know, who we have on top.

Q. As a follow to that, what do you remember about back in the day when you were that young guy that was coming up and flashing and showing results and things like that? Do you flash back to that at all when you see this group coming in?
SERGIO GARCIA: Yeah, I guess so, but it is nice, it's always nice when you're young and you know the scar tissue is not too thick. You play and you love it and you don't really care too much about everything that's going on around.

As you get older, I think you see more things and you start worrying and trying to help in other ways other than just playing golf. But it is nice to see those guys up there and kind of obviously remind me a little bit of when I came out and I was much younger.

Q. Speaking of those guys, it's a Ryder Cup year, and you'll hopefully be playing against them and with some of them, and it's also the Olympics, you hold cards on both tours, majors of course. What is the No. 1 goal for you this year?
SERGIO GARCIA: Well, the No. 1 goal is to play more like I did today. That's the first thing. And if I manage to do that, then I know the rest of the things are going to come around.

So I mean, it is a big year. There's so many great events that we're going to play, regular events, and then obviously we have the four majors. We have the Olympics. We have The Ryder Cup. So there's a lot of great things to get excited about. But you don't want to get ahead of yourself. You still want to go slowly and try to build your momentum and your confidence as the year goes on.

Q. How much do you still get excited in a Ryder Cup year?
SERGIO GARCIA: I always get excited when it's a Ryder Cup year. I've always said, it for me is the greatest event we have, if not the greatest event in the world. I mean, I'd put it right there with the World cup, World Cup final. It's impossible to not get excited about it.

Q. You spoke about not having scar tissue when you're young?
SERGIO GARCIA: Well, you do, but not as much.

Q. How refreshing is a round like today for someone who has scar tissue and to be able to, you know --
SERGIO GARCIA: Yeah, it's nice. Any time you play well and you feel like you've done most of the things you've wanted to do at a good level, it's always nice. Like I said, it's only the first round. We still have three tough rounds to go on a very difficult golf course, but any good round, it's always welcome. So I'm excited about that.

Q. Did you talk about 2 already?
SERGIO GARCIA: I did briefly, yeah. You want it again?

Q. No, I can get the rest later. But how was that hole playing when you got there? Seemed like the wind was into in the morning.
SERGIO GARCIA: It was into a little bit off the left, so it's a tough hole. It is a tough hole with no wind. So it wasn't easy at all. The great thing was that on 2, they moved the tees up a little bit. So instead of hitting driver and something like that or 4-iron, I was able to hit a really good drive and an 8-iron. But yeah, I would have taken a 4, but definitely take a 2.

Q. Was the answer you just gave better than the one you gave earlier?
SERGIO GARCIA: Well, I don't know (laughter).

Q. Did you feel out of sort today at all at any time?
SERGIO GARCIA: If I feel out of sorts on a day like today, then I'm in trouble. No, today was a nice day. So it was one -- even though it was difficult, it was a good day to enjoy.

AMANDA HERRINGTON: Sergio, thank you for your time.

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