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Defending Rocket Mortgage Classic champ Bryson DeChambeau says he's hitting it straighter & farther

Bryson DeChambeau 2020 Rocket Mortgage Classic
Posted at 2:51 PM, Jun 30, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-30 14:51:34-04

(WSYM) — 2020 Rocket Mortgage Classic winner Bryson DeChambeau thinks he could have a shot at defending his title this weekend when the tournament kicks off at the historic Detroit Golf Club.

Related: 2021 Rocket Mortgage Classic: Everything you need to know about Detroit's PGA TOUR event

Speaking to the media on Wednesday, DeChambeau said he is driving the ball straighter and farther than he did a year ago.

"If I can take advantage of the wedges -- wedges weren't great last week, but hopefully I can take care of that this week. If I can do that, I'll give myself a good chance," he said to the media.

Last year, DeChambeau drove the ball and putt very well on the Detroit Golf Club course, which led to his -23 score for a win.

He ranked first in strokes gained putting and strokes gained off the tee in the 2020 event, and had an average driving distance of 350.5 yards. DeChambeau also ranked 11th in putts made distance.

His win in 2020 was the first after he made dramatic swing changes to gain significant distance off the tee. He said the win was very important for him.

"It was a milestone to show everybody that this is a different way that I can do it and still win, so I was pretty proud of that. You know, used it pretty well throughout the year," he said. "I won again -- I won the U.S. Open, won Arnold Palmer and come close a few other times, but just again, not everything being on my A-game allowed me not to win. Hopefully, I can have that this week."

DeChambeau will be in one of four featured groups on Thursday and Friday at the tournament.

He'll tee off at 1:20 p.m. with Cameron Champ and Kramer Hickok on Thursday and 7:55 a.m. on Friday.