Unflappable In The Pool, Phelps Was Shaky On The Tee

CHASKA, Minn. (AP) — So much for all those Olympic races in the pool with a gold medal on the line. Michael Phelps says the most unnerving athletic moment of his life took place on land — teeing off at a celebrity tournament ahead of the 2012 Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club.

“Probably the most nervous I’ve ever been,” Phelps said Tuesday, hours before teeing off at a celebrity event at Hazeltine. “One, I didn’t want to shank one and drill somebody. And then I was just, ‘OK, shove a tee in the ground and try to hit one on the grass. That’s all I wanted to do.”

He did, barely. Phelps’ opening tee shot four years ago never climbed higher than his waist and rolled out some 70 yards.

Phelps says he’s a 15-handicapper at the moment. But now that’s he’s retired from competitive swimming — with 23 golds and 28 medals, total, he’s the most-decorated Olympian of all time — he plans to play three times a week.

“It’s going to be an interesting journey for however long I’m on this earth,” he laughed, “because I will be playing golf for every one of those years.”

Phelps was at the Ryder Cup on behalf of Omega, which also sponsors the U.S. Ryder Cup team, the PGA and Senior PGA Championships and the Ladies European Tour.

Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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