Last year’s US Open Championship will quite rightly be remember as Graeme McDowell’s Major but the performance of Grégory Havret, the man who finished runner up, did not go unnoticed and 12 months on the Frenchman is ready for another shot at the title.
Havret described his second place at Pebble Beach as "the best surprise and also the biggest disappointment" of his career after outshining final round playing partner Tiger Woods with a closing 72 but ultimately finishing one stroke behind McDowell.
Now the 34 year old is determined to go one better at Congressional Country Club in only his second US Open.
“I’m happy to be back at the US Open a year after Pebble Beach. It was obviously a big thing for me being runner up there but it is obviously better to win.
“I took a lot of confidence from how I performed last year. Even if everyone tells you that you can do and you to trust in yourself, it’s always nice to make that a reality. That is what happened last year. It was great for confidence and now I feel I can do anything.
“I think anything can happen for anybody and why not me?”
While proud of what he achieve 12 months ago, Havret retains a sense of missed opportunity having gone so close to landing a Major Championship to add to his three European Tour titles.
“I was one behind Graeme and I parred the last,” he recalled. “That meant he obviously played the last very steadily to win by one. A birdie meant he would have gone to the green under more pressure.
“I finished second alone though after playing with Tiger in the last round which was obviously special at Pebble Beach, where he won by 15 shots in 2000. So being that close to winning was obviously very good but also a big disappointment.
“I’m confident about my game coming into this week. I will probably play with the same strategy as last year. If I make one mistake I’ll try to avoid the other ones. If the wind blows it could be high scoring again but the conditions have been great so far.”
Havret withdrew from the Saab Wales Open after the second round following the death of his father, who watched him push McDowell all the way in the 2010 US Open.
“My father passed away the weekend of Celtic Manor so I spent last week with my family – my three brothers and my mother,” he said. “It was a hard week. My father was at Pebble Beach last week and it was special for me to have him there. It would be nice to do well for him this week.”