If winning is contagious, Houston is experiencing a full-blown outbreak. With the city still reverberating from the Houston Astros’ cathartic World Series victory, the Rockets then went out and produced the winningest season in franchise history. Riding that wave, Woodlands resident Patrick Reed (the 13th-ranked golfer in the world) captured one of professional golf’s most coveted titles at the Masters in April. A whirlwind of media appearances, including sit-downs on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon and LIVE with Kelly and Ryan, followed his win and exposed the San Antonio-born 27 year-old to an audience far beyond the golfing world. Known as “Captain America” for his heroic performances on the biggest stages, like the 2014 and 2016 Ryder Cup matches (which pits the United States team vs. Europe biannually), Reed appears poised to take his game to new heights.
Winning The Masters is a monumental career achievement. How challenging is it to maintain focus and keep the momentum from your first victory in a major championship?
After winning at Augusta, it kind of hit me to want to do more and want to get better. I think the best message I got was from (renowned short game coach) Dave Pelz. He left me a really long voicemail and just encouraged me to allow this to be a stepping stone… to work harder to put myself in that position again… to not settle and to keep that pedal down. That meant a lot because Dave is really close to our family.
It’s something that hit me hard and it is kind of how I live. I want to go and win more and I want to do more.
We’ve seen you in the spotlight more since your win at Augusta National. What are some of coolest experiences since becoming the Masters champ?
I’ve gotten to do so many firsts, like sitting courtside at MSG Stadium for a New York Knicks game against Cleveland Cavaliers. Sitting courtside watching my Rockets in the playoffs and sitting behind home plate watching my Astros was unbelievable. Getting a World Series ring still blows my mind. Really, though, getting to show the members at the clubs I’m associated with the green jacket has been incredible. They get so excited to see a Masters green jacket in person.
Since the Masters, you’ve continued to play well, locking down two more top-10 finishes on Tour. Have you had any time to unwind?
We have. I still like to keep to a schedule of practicing golf in the mornings, but we’ve set aside time to relax in the afternoon and go swimming a lot with my (four-year-old) daughter Windsor Wells. We love to escape up to the Hill Country. Horseshoe Bay on Lake LBJ is kind of our second home. We love getting up there and to, really, recover and relax on the lake or in the pool. It’s great to share that as a family.
Are you getting recognized more around the Woodlands and Houston?
Everyone seems to recognize green jacket and what it means to win the Masters. People come up to me all the time who don’t even play golf and say ‘congratulations.’
Mental toughness is clearly a strength you portray. How did you develop it?
Self-belief and perspective. My motto the whole week (of the Masters) was “just do you, be who you are and just play golf.” Sometimes going into majors you can build things up so much in your head, you can’t execute. Psychologically, I was proud of how I was able to bring myself down to Earth and just execute the shots I needed to win. I set high expectations for myself. That keeps me hungry and pushes me to work harder.
Your summer American Junior Golf Association event, the Insperity Invitational/Patrick Reed AJGA Junior Championship has helped raise more than $330,000 for charities since 2014. What’s been most rewarding about your charity work with your Team Reed Foundation?
We were able to help (donate more than $50,000) during Hurricane Harvey with the help of golf’s European Tour and sponsors. We want to service the needs of people in the local Houston area and, over time, start to spread our work nationwide. Whatever we can do to give people a better chance to reach their goals and have a brighter future, we’re committed.