Driven - biography of Nick Faldo

Portrait of an enigma by Dale Concannon

Bob Warters's picture
Wed, 13 Jun 2001

Driven - biography of Nick Faldo

As Dale Concannon points out in his fascinating book 'Driven'(published June 7) - the life and times of Nick Faldo almost reads like a Hollywood film script.

It's about love, marriage, clandestine affairs, bitterness, sporting achievement, politics, fast cars, tears and heartache.

And as one of Britain's richest sportsmen he could probably fund it himself and put his 'double' - actor Harrison Ford - in the lead role.

Faldo - enigma.
But he never would because Faldo is an enigma, a puzzling individual who has endured and an enjoyed more lows and highs than a generation of sporting heroes. And through it all he is adored by the British public.

The author, Dale Concannon, is perhaps best known as one of Europe's leading authorities on golf memorabilia but here, he has collected the definitive library of Faldo anecdotes. And there's plenty...

Faldo has been driven with the desire to be the best since watching an early US Masters on TV and telling his parents he had nominated golf as his chosen career rather than being an Olympic swimmer.

While winning six major titles - three Opens, three US Masters - his life has been riddled with controversy, divorce and an in-born contempt for the press, much of which he has brought upon himself.

But his heroic deeds for his country have brought the nation to edge of their seats and his ability to grind out a score in the face of adversity has endeared him to the hearts of even his fiercest critics.

The fact that he can still attract huge galleries - as we saw during his third place performance in the Volvo PGA at Wentworth in May - merely underscores his attraction and fascination.

Concannon does not judge his subject. He has merely captured in 350 fast-turning pages some terrific and toe-curling memories which makes this book a must for those seeking an insight into what drives a sportsman to the top of the tree.

And who knows, with his third marriage - to his Swiss Miss, Valerie Bercher - due to take place in August and a return to form emerging in recent weeks, the film script may yet have to be re-written. There's a happy ending looming as the credits roll.

'Driven:The Definitive Biography of Nick Faldo is published by Virgin Publishing (Priced £18.99).