Loose Impediment: pebbles, sticks, 2,000 lb boulders….
On this day, In 1999 at the Phoenix Open Tiger Woods got the famous “loose impediment ruling”. On the 13th hole, Woods yanked a tee shot that ended up behind a massive boulder. Facing an impossible shot he received the loose impediment ruling from a PGA Tour Rules Official. Despite weighing a ton, he asked members of the gallery to help him move the boulder. Fifteen to twenty men volunteered and moved the massive object out of Tigers way.
This event pretty much overshadowed the winner of the tournament, who was Rocco Mediate. Rocco posted a scored of 11 under par, 273 to beat Justin Leonard by two shots. Meanwhile Tiger is back here fooling around on the course, asking people to move “once thought” immovable objects. Present day there is a plaque on the boulder at TPC Scottsdale that made the day famous.
Josh Morris is the Editor of Golf History Today. A proud USGA Volunteer and golf enthusiast. In his free time he enjoys being a weekend caddie as well as playing as much as he can.