Bryson DeChambeau after taking early Masters lead: "I'm really not divisive"

Bryson DeChambeau says his infamous par 67 comment about Augusta National was misinterpreted after he raced into the early lead at the 2024 Masters.

Bryson DeChambeau
Bryson DeChambeau

Bryson DeChambeau claimed his infamous par 67 comment was 'misinterpreted' after he raced into the early lead at the 2024 Masters.

DeChambeau tore round Augusta National on Thursday, carding eight birdies and one bogey to post a remarkable 7-under 65.

The American LIV Golf player has a simply terrible record at this major but played like a man possessed. 

Undoubtedly, the highlight of his round came at the par-5 15th after finding the green with his second shot when it looked nearly impossible. 

"Funny enough I was just trying to get to the back right section of the green," DeChambeau told reporters about the birdie. 

"And I pushed it a little bit. It clipped the tree. I hit four pine needles rather than five and it worked out perfectly.

"But it was a little scary of a shot. I shouldn't have probably done it, but I took a risk. I was willing to take it [and] I was rewarded fortunately." 

It was four years ago that DeChambeau caused a stir with a wild claim about the iconic course.


When he was 26 years old, DeChambeau suggested Augusta National was a 'par 67 for me' because he could reach all the par-5s in two shots.

"If the conditions stay the way they are, that's what I feel like par is for me," he previously said.  

"That's not me being big-headed. I can hit it as far as I want to."

Speaking to a pool of scribes after his opening round, the American now claims that comment was taken out of context.

"Again, the comment was definitely misinterpreted," he said. "I said it, and I respect people's opinions on it.

"For me, I have a level of respect for this golf course that's a little bit different than a couple years ago, and clearly today was a great test of golf, and I was able to conquer a very difficult golf course today.

"Regarding the 67 comment, you know, you mess up. I'm not a perfect person. Everybody messes up. You learn from your mistake, and that was definitely one."

Bryson DeChambeau
Bryson DeChambeau

"I don't try to be divisive"

DeChambeau joined LIV Golf in 2022 and, whether he has meant to or not has been a polarising figure. 

He was one of 11 LIV players who litigated against the PGA Tour.

In recent months he has stepped up his calls for peace in the men's game despite, as some have pointed out, being part of the problem. 

It has also not gone unnoticed that DeChambeau's calls for unification 'within two years' coincides with his major exemptions running out. 

DeChambeau said he is not trying to be controversial.

"Well, I'll just say this," he said. 

"I'm a very passionate individual, and some people can take that in a pretty negative way. 

"Others can take it in a way of, wow, he's trying to pave a pathway and his own path.

"I think that's a pretty big misconception; that I'm divisive. I'm really not. I don't try to be. 

"It may come off that way because I'm passionate about certain things and certain subjects. That's up for interpretation and opinion.

"And, look, I respect everybody's opinion and what they think. 

"I have no issues, and I understand the pathway that I pave is going to be viewed in multiple ways.

"I'm just learning to be myself and continuing to be okay with what happens."

Elsewhere, world number one Scottie Scheffler got off to a brilliant start with a six under 66. 

Rory McIlroy, chasing the career grand slam, had an up-and-down day but managed to card a one under 71. 

DeChambeau's LIV compatriot Joaquin Niemann was five shots back of the lead.

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