June 27, 2018
THE MODERATOR: Sergio Garcia, it's wonderful to have you here for your debut at the HNA Open de France^ .
SERGIO GARCIA: Thank you.
Q. Give us your thoughts on being back in Paris.
SERGIO GARCIA: Yeah. No, it's exciting. Obviously it's been a while since the lack of trophies over the past. But yeah, I'm excited to play here, excited to play on a really strong, tough golf course. Obviously with what's coming later in the year, too. So it's an exciting week.
THE MODERATOR: I know you've had a chance to play a few holes yesterday. How was it out there for you?
SERGIO GARCIA: It's good. The golf course is in really good shape. The greens are a little bit soft at the moment. They weren't too fast yesterday. But yeah, the course looks great. A little bit kind of intimidating look wise from the tee with all that fescue high grass and stuff, but everybody's gotta hit it and hopefully as straight as possible. Should be a good challenge.
THE MODERATOR: Perfect. We'll open it up for questions.
Q. When you took your first look at it, does it strike you as a classic Ryder Cup golf course and one that perhaps will be better suited to the Europeans than the one we saw two years ago?
SERGIO GARCIA: Yeah, hopefully. I think -- I would say so. At the end of the day it just depends on how we play that particular week as a team. So -- but on paper you would think that, yeah, this is -- with -- I mean pretty much all of the Europeans we've been playing this course for a while, and we know it quite well. And it should suit us a little bit better. But then we'll see how the week goes then.
Q. And you seem to be trending in the right direction. Do you feel in good form at this point in time?
SERGIO GARCIA: Yeah. I hope so. I've been working hard. Obviously I've gone through some changes, and it's -- sometimes it takes a little bit longer to get used to those, but last week was a nice week to start doing some positive things. Obviously there's some things that we still need to improve and get much better at, but I saw some good highlights, and that's the most important thing.
Q. How are you adjusting to family life, balancing your golf and family life?
SERGIO GARCIA: Pretty much still on it. Yeah, like I was saying earlier, it's amazing. It's great. I have a great wife and a beautiful little girl that makes things as easy as possible. But there's still a change from what it's been your whole life, and you gotta get used to it a little bit, but we're enjoying it.
Q. How do your Reds fans chances at the World Cup and if they have one, to win it?
SERGIO GARCIA: At the moment, not great. We looked great on the first game, and then we haven't looked that great the next two. So hopefully we'll make some changes and we can go in against Russia, because now you cannot have a bad game. If you have a bad game, you're out. In the group stage you can have a bad game and get away with it. Now you can't really do that. So hopefully it will change.
Q. So the course is going to improve by the end of the week. Is this pretty good practice for Carnoustie as well?
SERGIO GARCIA: I guess in a way. It's not a links course. So it's not going to play -- it doesn't matter how firm it goes. It's not going to play as fast as Carnoustie would play if the weather is good. But you know, you're still playing golf. You're still hitting shots, and it's always a good preparation. But I didn't come here because of that. I came here because I thought it's a great golf course and a really good tournament, and that's what I want to focus on. When we get to Carnoustie, then we'll focus on the Open.
Q. We were just speaking to Justin Thomas there, who's come over and he said this is part of his preparation for the Ryder Cup. Are you surprised more Americans haven't come over this week?
SERGIO GARCIA: Well, no, not really. Not really, because they -- I mean they have their schedules, and you know, it's not that easy for them to come. You know, I think if it was the week before the Open, then you probably would see more. But to come here three weeks before the Open and then what do you do, you go back to the U. S. or you stay around here? So it's not that simple to schedule it that way. So I think it's fine.
Q. Sergio, you mentioned the Ryder Cup there. How do you feel the two teams are shaking up at the moment? You got a lot of major wins there. How do you sort of see it shaking out?
SERGIO GARCIA: Yeah, I think it looks good at the moment for both sides. I mean I like the way the European team is shaping up, and obviously the American team always looks quite strong. But there's still like two and a half months to go. So there's still a lot of golf to be played. And we'll see -- we'll worry about it a month, month and a half before then is when you kind of start seeing what's really going to come around. And now it's still too far away.
Q. Have you ever played the course before this week? I know it's yourself first French Open, but maybe when you were a junior?
SERGIO GARCIA: I think I played one practice round when I was an amateur, like 20 years ago or 20 something years ago. I've obviously watched it on TV many times. And I got a pretty good idea about the course. Today obviously we'll take a nice look at it, and we'll be ready for it tomorrow.
Q. We had Jon Rahm in here yesterday. Obviously a young Spanish guy. He seems very excited about the possibility of playing the Ryder Cup. Does it give you a lot of pleasure to see somebody else coming on to take that task on because that's been a big part of the Ryder Cup over the years?
SERGIO GARCIA: Of course. Yeah, of course. Definitely. As a Spanish player myself, it's great to see, you know, that the Spanish heritage kind of keep going on the Ryder Cup. He has a solid chance of making it to this one, too. And Jon and hopefully myself, too. So it's nice to see that the Spanish heritage to kind of keep going and hopefully more and more players will come around, and whatever helps the team. So it's good.
Q. (Indiscernible) two years ago that you actually won. What do you remember about that?
SERGIO GARCIA: Yeah, I've always enjoyed it. They've always treated me really well. So like I said earlier, I'm excited about it. I'm excited for the golf course, for the fans. I think it's going to be a good taste of what might come around later in the year, in September, for the fans. So I think it should be a very exciting week for everyone.
Q. It's now nearly four years since the Europeans (indiscernible). Is it quite the same having the second visit the confidence going into the match this year?
SERGIO GARCIA: Yeah, it is. It is exciting. I think that it's nice to see it moving around. Obviously we love playing in the UK, and the fans are amazing there, but it's nice to see it move around Europe because we know that we're still going to get those UK crowds coming and supporting. And also this way it becomes even more European than before. So I think it's a good mix with that. And then obviously going to Italy, and you know, we'll see what comes around in the future.
Q. Do you think that will impact on the Americans when they're in the UK, that it's slightly more foreign to them?
SERGIO GARCIA: I wouldn't think so. I think everyone speaks English nowadays.
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