Media Center Interviews

April 3, 2019

Pre-Tournament Interview with Matt Kuchar

DOUG MILNE: Matt Kuchar, thanks for joining us for a few minutes prior to the start of Round 1 of the Valero Texas Open. You're making your 15th start in the event, a couple of top-5 finishes, I think one at La Canterra, one here. With that said, you've had a chance to see the course. Just a few thoughts on being back here and kind of how it's setting up, looking like it's going to set up for your game this week.

MATT KUCHAR: It's a great test of golf. I remember being at home not playing this event several years ago thinking, I need to put that back on the schedule, the course looks great for me. It is a demanding driving golf course, interesting around the greens, and I've added it back to the schedule and enjoy it every year. Now I think everybody knows it's a family favorite event. My kids would string me up if we didn't come here, they love it. I love it. It's been a great week for us.

DOUG MILNE: And as far as your game goes, obviously your results this season are quite favorable, but how about the course itself as far as your game goes?

MATT KUCHAR: The course, they've done a nice job with the overseed. I think several years ago leading up to Augusta they were in this position and overseeded the entire course. It looks great, playing great. The greens are -- I'm not sure we've played firmer greens this year, which makes the course so much more challenging.

Certainly, driving the ball becomes really, really critical when the greens are firm. You want to be in the fairway just to be able to hold the greens. This rough doesn't look like much, it's the two-inch cut similar to what they do at Augusta, but when the greens are firm, if you're in the rough, you're really going to struggle to hold the greens.

So it's a great test at the moment. My game is on some good form. I'm hoping to continue the good form, but I'm definitely excited because game feels good and I feel like the course is a good fit for me as well.

DOUG MILNE: Well, that answered my next question, so we'll open it up to you guys if you have a few questions.

Q. You said you and your family enjoy coming here to San Antonio and playing in this tournament. Why is that, can you kind of expand on that?

MATT KUCHAR: Well, starts with the golf course. For me personally, I really enjoy the week. They have a good golf course and I very much enjoy this golf course.

But it's rare that we get to stay on site, on property where you really don't need to get in the car for anything. So to be able to roll out of bed, be at the clubhouse, at the driving range just makes for an easy week. Having all the amenities of the pool, the restaurants, the fields, all the stuff that kids love doing. Funny, when kids are having a good time, parents have a good time and it certainly happens with us. The kids just love it and they kind of are able to run free, whether it's daytime, whether it's even at dinners. The setup with the restaurants are fantastic with a big field out back where kind of all the kids gather until the food gets served, and then they come and gobble down the food as quick as possible so they can go back out and run with the other friends. So it's definitely a fun, friendly atmosphere and one that is certainly, it's become kind of a family favorite each year.

Q. Matt, you may still be looking for the formula, but do you have the strong opinion one way or the other on playing the week before a major or not?

MATT KUCHAR: It's a tricky one, Adam. I think I probably would be in the still looking for a formula. They're all different. Like THE PLAYERS Championship I treat with the attention of a major and I started taking the week off prior to THE PLAYERS. It used to be the Wells Fargo, the Charlotte event, and had some really good success doing it that way, going down for a weekend of Saturday, Sunday practice rounds, then heading home to Sea Island for a couple days and showing back up on Wednesday. That formula's worked well for me at PLAYERS.

Masters, I've done it a couple different ways, never really thought one way is all that much better than the other.

British Open, I've enjoyed going and playing the Scottish Open as a tune-up. And PGA, I've not really figured out.

This week is interesting for me having the back-to-back weeks in Texas. My instructor, Chris O'Connell, is in Dallas. Had him come to Austin and now to San Antonio to spend some time.

Funny for me, the formula I've had great success with is leading up to Memorial, not that -- I guess the way it worked was I played Byron Nelson, Colonial. Chris O'Connell was right there in Dallas, had two weeks with him and I 'd always get on really good form at Memorial. I would definitely have my best track record of any at Memorial. So I'm hoping that this set-up of the schedule to have Austin and San Antonio back-to-back weeks leading up to Augusta, I get a couple extra weeks with Chris and then roll into Augusta, I'm hoping that this Texas Swing is similar to what I have leading up to Memorial. I'm hoping the Texas Swing leading up to Augusta works in a similar fashion.

DOUG MILNE: Anybody else? You guys are making this too easy on him. Well, Matt, thanks for your time and best of luck this week.

MATT KUCHAR: Thank you very much.