Valspar Championship

Thursday, April 29, 2021

Palm Harbor, Florida, USA

Innisbrook Resort (Copperhead)

Hank Lebioda

Quick Quotes

Q. Bogey-free round. If we can get some comments on your play?

HANK LEBIODA: Yeah, it was a really tidy round. I was leaning heavily on my short game early on and had a really nice chip in on No. 5 kind of from out of the blue. But after that kind of settled in, relied on what I do best, which in my opinion's my ball striking, and just rolled with it.

Q. That was quite the birdie there, you asked for a ruling. What were you trying to establish?

HANK LEBIODA: A TIO I was behind one of the Shot Link towers and I just wanted to confirm where I could go, basically, if I needed to go closer to the hole or if it was either side, my preference. Decided to go with the side that was probably a little bit more short sided, but for whatever reason it felt good when I was looking at it and turned out all right.

Q. When did it feel like you were going to have a pretty good day out there because were you a little wild early a little squirrely?

HANK LEBIODA: That's a tough one. You wake up every morning assuming that you're going to do good. You're going to bet on yourself, you're going to bet on your work, you're going to bet on the people around you. And if you don't think you're going to show up and have a good day, you're kind of hurting yourself right from the beginning. But, yeah, I just did my best to have fun, stay loose and enjoy everything.

Q. How would you describe the crowd out there?

HANK LEBIODA: It seemed like we had quite a bit of local flavor in our group. It was nice, the fans here at Valspar are always great, but playing with Michael, being the local kid, felt like we had probably an extra 40, 50 people out there than we normally would in our pairing, which was a blast. It's fun. It's nice being rewarded and hearing cheers when you hit a good shot, rather than just your playing partner saying, Hey, nice, good ball, things like that.

Q. You've known Mike since junior golf. What do you make of his story this week?

HANK LEBIODA: Oh, it's true. We played some junior golf together in high school and we both enrolled in school at the same year. It was true, it was raw emotion. When I saw the video it made me feel really good, because I know Mike's been playing really well, one, but also working really hard. For guys playing mini tours during COVID when there was really nothing for them to play in, and it's a grind. It was a grind -- mini tours are a grind as it is anyway, but then throwing COVID break, quarantine, no events at all for these guys to play in, it's just, it's brutal, absolutely brutal.

So to see Mike, who I know works hard, who has been playing really well, be able to get into this hometown event for him, it's really neat.

Q. On the scoreboard it said that your dad used to bribe you to practice with ice cream.


Q. That's true?

HANK LEBIODA: Yeah, it's true. So when my dad would get home from work I would be driving my mom nuts -- not surprising. Dad would, after we finished dinner, dad would take me to the driving range, which was probably a 10-minute drive, but perfectly halfway on the way back on that side of the road was a TCBY and so he would say, Hank, if you, come to the driving range with me, I can hit balls and you could goof around and get some energy out, we can get some ice cream on the way home. And I said, Yeah, of course. So that was kind of how I got started in the game and then just progressed from there.

Q. What flavor?

HANK LEBIODA: Can't go wrong with cookies and cream.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports
107069-1-1044 2021-04-29 18:36:00 GMT

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