Sony Open in Hawaii

Friday, January 13, 2023

Honolulu, Hawaii, USA

Waialae Country Club

Michael Castillo

Quick Quotes

Q. Highlight of the week? Besides this.

MICHAEL CASTILLO: Yeah, well, obviously being in front of you is always the highlight for sure. Today, I would say a lot of my shots today felt like a played to my potential a lot more today.

I just don't hit it anywhere near as far as these guys do. I'm hitting different clubs, and I recognized that, so expectations of being able to hit it close is there.

But short game was very solid today. 18 was a difficult pitch and hit nicely. Putted really good. I guess the highlight, one is watching my mom get around this golf course for the last two days. She's feeling really good.

Q. Did 18 both days?

MICHAEL CASTILLO: Yeah. She's such a healthy lady and it's nice to see her walk around and do that.

But the whole experience is a highlight, I guess. Every bits and pieces of it was really, really fun. Couldn't ask for a better group. Scott and Brent were really nice people to play golf with.

Q. If you had won a Section in Southern Cal when you were there, it still wouldn't have been as meaningful as being in Hawaii.

MICHAEL CASTILLO: Yeah, no question. Winning the Section Championship here at Poipu where I spent 12 years working there and with a lot of friends around, people that were still -- I worked with 12 years ago that are still there, it's really, really special for sure.

Q. If you go back to Wednesday, how did the nine hole practice round with Adam come together?

MICHAEL CASTILLO: I asked. (Laughter.)

He said, yeah, absolutely. There is only two of us and his agent said, I'll square it away, and the timing was -- wasn't precise, nor should be.

It worked out fine. We played with Chez in the morning and then took a little break, had some lunch, and played with Adam. Yeah, it's pretty awesome. Adam is -- can't ask for a nicer guy and a great player.

Q. Look forward to going back to work next week?

MICHAEL CASTILLO: I go back to work, do I? Yeah, I guess I do go back to work. Thanks for reminding me, Doug. Yeah, looking forward to it, actually.

Q. Obviously what you are going through health-wise can be inspiration to people at any age. What do you hope people who know your story now can look at you over the last couple days and can draw from?

MICHAEL CASTILLO: You know, I didn't really put a lot of thought into that because I don't see myself as an inspiration as much as I just do my thing.

But people reach out to me, and if people can continue, are capable of continuing to do what they love to do and also deal with what cancer deals you, I encourage that.

I encourage people not to get caught up in what it's all about and the potential negative things about it.

I think you deal with it day by day and still want to live your life like you always want to live your life, and that's what I tried to do. Again, strong support from people at work, obviously people from home, and friends, makes it easier.

You know, I like what I'm doing. I like to work. I like to play golf. I'm not letting my cancer dictate what I can or can't do.

Q. On 18 you make birdie there in front of family, friends, everyone. Knowing what this tournament means, your family members have played in this, what your family means to Hawaii Golf, what was 18 like for you today?

MICHAEL CASTILLO: It was great. I mean, I really wanted to make 4 on the last hole. I put the myself in a good position on my second shot because I was in the rough. Really couldn't get all the way on to the green. The pitch seemed pretty simple, vanilla, but needed the right weight of shot with something on it.

Lucky enough to finish a foot or so from the hole. Made it easy to make 4 rather than try to make a six-footer with some bend to it. That was exciting.

I birdied the first hole of the back nine and then the last hole, so that was good.

Q. Lastly, when you put the last two weeks in your memory jar of where golf ranks, what would the last two mean when you look back in a couple days or however long to really embrace everything?

MICHAEL CASTILLO: Definitely the highlight of anything I've done with golf, playing the game for sure. Yes, I won a few Section Championships. Those are all fun and good. But to be tested on the PGA TOUR with the best in the world, doesn't get sexier than that.

Q. Yourself, Parker, Brent, Blaze, the UH golfing amateur, to have that kind of representation of local golfers, what does that do for some of the next generation of local golfers here in Hawaii to see you guys walk Waialae, to be out here on the course and set that example?

MICHAEL CASTILLO: It was pretty unique, right? You have a former less active tour player, Parker, a newcomer, Brent, a very talented amateur player that's going to have great things in front of him, and someone like myself who has basically always been a club pro.

I played some competitive golf. Played well enough to be here at my age. It just shows that golf is very unique and there is a lot of talent here in Hawaii.

Going to be some great things happening in golf in Hawaii in the future.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports
128364-1-1041 2023-01-14 00:11:00 GMT

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