Max Homa is hoping for “carnage” in the 123rd US Open to ensure his course record remains firmly intact.
Homa shot a stunning nine-under-par 61 at Los Angeles Country Club on his way to winning the prestigious Pac-12 title in 2013, a tournament which also featured two-time major winner Jon Rahm.
To no-one’s surprise, Rahm predicted on Tuesday that typical US Open conditions would ensure there would be no repeat of Homa’s heroics this week, with Branden Grace’s men’s major record of 62 also looking safe.
“It’s going to be pretty hard,” Homa said.
“I think the sun being out is real helpful. A little bit of wind is going to make it spicy. I hope it’s carnage. I hope it’s a typical US Open. This golf course lends itself to that.
“It’s generous enough off the tee, and it’s kind of a second-shot golf course in a way. You can get around here probably hitting a lot of shots from the fairway, but you’re going to have to hit really quality shots.
“The greens are severe, and if they keep getting firmer and faster I think it’ll be a really good test. I think it will be really fair.
“One of the more severe US Opens I’ve been to was Winged Foot (in 2020), but it’s so penal off the tee that once you mess that up, everyone is doing the same thing.
“This course will be a lot different. I think it’ll be a great test of all areas of your golf, and it will really show a quality shot will go to a good spot, and one that’s not great is going to go to a bad spot and you’re going to see a lot of silliness go on.
“This venue is awesome for a US Open.”
Homa has yet to record a top-10 finish in 15 major appearances, with a best result of 13th in the 2022 US PGA, but the California native has won four of his six PGA Tour titles in his home state.
And with his course knowledge also potentially a significant advantage, the 32-year-old American finds himself among the favourites for the year’s third major championship.
“I really do believe that my golf game is plenty good enough to contend in these things,” the world number seven said.
“I think I’ve shown that in other PGA Tour events. I’ve won six times, a lot of them recently. I’ve done it on some pretty great golf courses, some hard golf courses. I just think I get here and I try too hard.
“I’m a perfectionist and it makes me work really, really hard. I’m very diligent. But it’s like a double-edged sword. I get in these things and I can’t seem to understand that it’s OK to make bogeys and it’s OK to mess up.
“Oak Hill (for last month’s US PGA Championship) was a great example. Thursday morning I had the greatest warm-up I have ever had and in my head I’m thinking ‘Finally, I have it’.
“I came out and hit a perfect drive down the middle of the fairway and missed the green and immediately went into fight or flight, and that’s just something I need to get over.
“I think I’ve been waiting for the weeks to click with my golf game and realising that it’s not the golf game. This week will be a mental test for me, which is good.”
Published: by Radio NewsHub