When speaking of epic collapses, none come to mind quicker and harder than the Jean Van de Velde 18th hole at Carnoustie in 1999. My parents have a great story about the experience. Standing in front of a television in a Mississippi airport, my parents and sister (all golf fans by trade) stared directly at the TV in a wonderment that might never be matched.
What the hell is this guy doing?
Van de Velde said in an interview this week that he will retire from the game of golf, saying "It's not like I'm going to stop playing completely but I'm definitely going to slow down a lot."
The 42-year-old Frenchman will forever be remembered for Carnoustie, but a lot forget how well he took the defeat and how much it pushed him into notoriety. Two wins in his career, including a European Tour victory in 2006, Van de Velde compared his golf to, what else would a Frenchman use, a bottle of wine.
"My career I can compare to a good bottle of wine. You take a glass and enjoy it; you take a second glass and really enjoy it; a third, then the bottle is getting empty.
"I've been going around the world for so many years and at the end of the day you can only do so much. Next year I will only play the tournaments I really enjoy.
So, to honor our favorite French golfer today, here it is, that nasty 18th hole. Basically you can watch all 5 minutes of this video and never think once "WHAT IS THIS GUY THINKING!?!!?!" Also, the fist pump for triple is my favorite fist pump of all time.