What leader Charley Hoffman said after opening 65 at Masters

Michael Madrid-USA TODAY Sports

What leader Charley Hoffman said after opening 65 at Masters

PGA Tour

What leader Charley Hoffman said after opening 65 at Masters

AUGUSTA, Ga. – It was a special round Thursday for Charley Hoffman, as the 40-year-old opened in 7-under 65 to take a four-shot lead through one round at the Masters.

It was an especially incredible score for Hoffman considering conditions were tough and he’d never led a major after any round before Thursday.

Here’s some of his most pertinent quotes on what transpired in Round 1:

On whether that 65 required any fortune:

“(It was) a little bit lucky. Fortunate I put myself in spots to be able to make putts. Doesn’t mean you’re going to make them out here. I was able to make some longer putts, which you’re just trying to die it up there close to the hole, and they were able to go in.”

On a huge par save at 13 after finding the water:

“Thirteen was a tough shot. The wind is swirling around and I was sort of in‑between clubs. You didn’t want to go over the green. I was just trying to hit a nice, smooth hybrid to the middle of the green and the wind sort of kicked up to the right and blew it into the creek.

I was just trying to give myself an uphill putt and it kicked a little left and actually I had a pretty challenging left-to-right about 15-footer, and I was able to make that. You don’t want to make bogeys on any hole out here, more or less a birdie hole that you do have. It was a very, very big momentum-keeper.”

On sleeping on a major championship lead for the first time:

“Obviously going to sleep on the lead at a major championship here at Augusta National is not going to be the easiest thing. I look forward to it, and I look forward to the challenge the next three days.”

On comfort level overall at Augusta:

“Just when I step on the property, I feel good. Visually – I’m a very visual person; visually, it fits my eye. The greens, I don’t know why it is, I like to see putts that break. Just it feels good when I’m on the greens and on the tees and hitting shots into the green.

I don’t know if it just makes me focus a little bit more out here, but I definitely feel comfortable on this property.”

On how his self-belief has transformed in recent weeks:

“Oh, belief definitely comes and goes. There’s confidence with anything. I was struggling with the putter pretty much the first start of the year and at Bay Hill, something clicked.

I thank my caddie Brett Waldman for pointing out my alignment wasn’t good. And then once I got that on track, I started to believe that my alignment was good and I was able to see the putts start going in the hole and started visualizing good things instead of bad.”

On where this round ranks in his career:

“Yeah, only thing, the run I did at Deutsche Bank, that 62 in the final round (in 2010) was sort of similar where everything just started going in and ball going where I was looking, is the only thing that compares obviously. The stage, it was a playoff event where I did that and this stage is as big as it gets.

I really enjoyed it and I’m really looking forward to the next few days to see how I handle everything, and just go forward.”

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