CME Group Tour Championship

Thursday, November 18, 2021

Naples, Florida, USA

Tiburon Golf Club

Gaby Lopez

Quick Quotes

Q. Gaby Lopez after a 6-under par 66 in the first round of the CME Group Tour Championship here at Tiburon. Seven birdies today, including three straight right out of the gate. How does that help set the tone for you this afternoon?

GABY LOPEZ: Pretty nicely. Of course it's really nice to start the round with three birdies in a row. I was just very comfortable with my swing out there. I was very comfortable to get aggressive to certain pins that I was having the perfect number, the perfect club.

And, yeah, I think I hit really good putts with good speed, and that was the key, just to give yourself as many opportunities as you want. I hit 17 greens. I've been striking the golf ball very nicely.

Very excited to see what the weekend holds for me.

Q. What is it specifically about Tiburon that you got to keep your eye on to make sure no big numbers sneak in?

GABY LOPEZ: Yeah, I think just be aware of some putt bunkers out there. You can get a funny lie, or it's always like just good luck when you get in one of those.

Just be in position all the time. They're very wide fairways so you can rip it, you can be aggressive with your driver, be aggressive with wedges when you have to.

Q. Last three first rounds at Pelican, 4-under, BMW 5-under, and today 6-under. Really solid starts. What is it about getting off to fast starts that you particularly agreed with lately?

GABY LOPEZ: Yeah, I think it's just like the refresh from new start from a new tournament. You know, sometimes I think I got to take that mentality into the past three rounds.

I'm very excited to take a break after this week. I think it's been a long season just continuing from 2020; we finished late.

So I feel that just give it my everything, give it my last push until the end.

Q. Is it adrenaline, you're running on a little bit of adrenaline at this point of the year after such a strong year, or do you still have some energy left?

GABY LOPEZ: No, I don't think I'm going to ever have a lack of energy. You know, I love this game. I love just getting better. That excites me a lot. That motivates me a lot.

I've seen myself up and down throughout the year, but I know that there is some good golf inside of me, and I'm really happy to just getting comfortable with that.

Being mentally comfortable with how I'm speaking to myself and not probably what, if not just setting the tone and the right mindset out there and just enjoying it. I was just talking to my caddie and I ask him, Hey, are you enjoying it? He was like, I'm having so much fun, but calmly.

And I think that's really nice to hear.

Q. Keep it nice and even.

GABY LOPEZ: Yeah, exactly.

Q. You mentioned some early mornings recently for you with Pro-Ams and some of the travel. Then the changeup in the tee times for the weather this afternoon. You positioned yourself for a little later tee time tomorrow. How nice was that?

GABY LOPEZ: Yeah, I'm really excited. The last three rounds I've woken up at 5:00, 5:00, and 4:30 today, so I'm really excited for a later tee time.

Enjoy breakfast a little more with more time.

Q. You have a pair of top 25s here over the several years you've competed in the CME Group Tour Championship. What have you learned over the years to have arrived this week and feel confident knowing what you can do here?

GABY LOPEZ: I feel it's just you talking to yourself and not letting your mind talk to you or your emotions talk to you and take over your nervous system.

It's really hard, of course. You're in the highest level competing. At the end of the day, it's just getting to know yourself, what works for you, what doesn't work for you. At the end of the day, it's just keep trying things, just being I think mentally tough.

Q. How would you sum up this year for you?

GABY LOPEZ: Oh, it's been probably one of the best years I've had. Just very consistent. I think I missed probably two cuts and put myself nicely in position to be in contention.

I feel that that was my goal this year, as many times as I can feel comfortable, and I feel that the fourth round over so many tournaments I've been able to capitalize and been able to shoot a low number out there.

I feel that just gets you more comfortable over different positions you are on the leaderboard.

Q. How do you approach goals? Do you have a meeting and write them down at the start of the year?

GABY LOPEZ: Yeah, I'm a writer. I love to write down things. Just having different goals, I feel that just gets me into short-term goals, into process, and then eventually through to results.

But the more I focus on what I need to do to get better rather than what's been going on, I feel that's key.

Q. You say you're a writer. What do you like to write throughout the year?

GABY LOPEZ: I just like to journal. I journal a lot. I journal pretty much every day. You know, I like to see myself back where I was struggling, what did I do to get out of the struggle.

I like to see what was I doing when I was playing good or I was mentally good. I just I like to question myself all the time. I like to just be a nerd on Gaby.

Q. How many journals have you gone through this year, do you think?

GABY LOPEZ: This year? I'm finishing up my third. I have probably total of 12.

Q. Wow. And then lastly, what would you do with $1,5 million?

GABY LOPEZ: Well $5 million?

Q. With 1.5.

GABY LOPEZ: 1.5, of course. I don't know. Probably just look at my family and see how I can help them.

Q. Perfect. You mention that you like looking back. Are there any in particular that you've looked back on to remind yourself where you were?

GABY LOPEZ: Yes. I feel that looking back it takes me to where I was better with me, myself, and not Gaby the golfer.

I feel that when I got comfortable with who I am and I own myself and I am comfortable under my own skin, that's exactly where I feel I have the best version of myself and not pretending to be someone else, not pretending to demonstrate anything.

Just kind of just being honest with myself. I feel that sometimes -- at times I find myself trying things and trying to perform for the people around me.

I like to keep it simple, and that's where I look down to my journals to see what exactly did I do to be okay with who I am.

Q. Is there a particular time that you remember in particular relative to today?

GABY LOPEZ: Yeah, I feel that -- actually college golf. I mean, college golf was extremely good. I think just gain MVP. I feel that just being very secure about yourself, by doing little things. When you do your bed, when you wake up and you set up time in your alarm and you don't snooze it and when you check yourself into little habits, that's when the big things grow inside of you, this power of no one can stop me.

I feel that when I stop being lazy, when I am not getting excuses of snoozing my phone or not eating the right thing, when I keep on track myself and I'm true to myself, I think that's exactly where I get the best Gaby from me.

Q. So have you been hitting the snooze button on the on those 5:00 a.m. wake-ups recently?

Replacename: Well, I've been tired. Probably 5:10 I can get it. Yeah, it's hard, but when you have four weeks of playing you just got to be on top of the little things, sleep the right time and eating the right thing.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports
114877-1-1041 2021-11-18 19:02:00 GMT

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