Dustin Johnson is the world’s No. 1 player, but withdrawing from the The Masters last month – minutes before his tee time – captured more headlines than any of his recent accomplishments.
“Back is a hundred percent good,” he said Wednesday. “It has been the last two weeks.”
A tie for second two weeks ago at Wells Fargo, and a tie for 12th last week at The Players would bear that out.
Wells Fargo “was playing tough and it was windy and, you know, just got around the course and kind of the same thing last week,” Johnson said. “I wasn’t really – the back wasn’t bothering me. Didn’t have any practice leading into the two weeks.”
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Johnson has been No. 1 since winning the Genesis Open in February. In March he added wins in the World Golf Championships-Mexico and the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play in Austin.
“I want to put myself in a position to have a chance to win the golf tournament,” he said. “Doesn’t matter what tournament it is or where I’m playing it at. You know, I expect to compete every week.”
At the AT&T Byron Nelson, Johnson has four Top-10 finishes, and six Top-25s in his last six appearances at TPC Four Seasons at Las Colinas.
Johnson hasn’t seen Trinity Forest Golf Club in Dallas, site of the 2018 Nelson.
“Obviously I’ve done well here so I’ll definitely miss that,” he said.
About next year ...
Trinity Forest Golf Club officials gave a tour of the site of next year’s AT&T Byron Nelson.
The course, less than a year old, was created by Texas golf legend Ben Crenshaw and respected designer Bill Coore. It’s a treeless, links-style layout surrounded by towering trees of the Great Trinity Forest.
“Given the way this course is designed, and the way that they have it set up, at least on paper, with various grandstands and hospitality venues, there’s going to be incredible action, kind of nonstop,” said Jonas Woods, a Dallas real estate developer and co-founder of Trinity Forest.
“You’re watching six, seven different shots on multiple greens and multiple tee locations really from one location. You don’t have to take a step, just turn.”
Under the dome
Visitors to last year’s Nelson got to don virtual realty headsets by AT&T. The tournament sponsor has kicked that up with the AT&T Fan Dome.
Located near the No. 2 tee, the 32-foot-tall dome offers one of the first looks at a new 360 video (planetarium-style) live stream broadcast from the 1st and 17th tee boxes.
When players aren’t at the tee boxes and TV coverage goes to commercials, the live stream will show fans milling about – so be wary of inappropriate picking or scratching.
The VR headsets and an interactive course map are back, and secure mobile phone charging stations are available. Also check out the video Jordan Spieth: The Course of Life.