Dustin Johnson entered the 72nd hole of the 2010 PGA Championship with a one stroke lead. If he made par on the hole, he would take home a major championship. He ended up bogeying the hole, missing a 7-foot putt to seemingly win the title.
As Johnson walked off the green, a rules official informed Johnson that he may have grounded his club in a sand trap. The result would be a 2-shot penalty, dropping Johnson from a tie for first and spot in a three-person playoff all the way down to a three-way tie for fifth. In seconds, Johnson went from having a chance to win a major tournament, to a spot in a playoff, to fifth place. The champion took home 1.35 million, 2nd place won $810,000, and Johnson ended up with $270,833. In the time it took to read this paragraph, Johnson grounding his club in the sand likely cost him more than $500,000.
The golf course, Whistling Straits, has more than 1,000 bunkers, many of which fans walked through or stood in throughout the tournament. Johnson did not believe his ball was in a bunker, saying afterwards, "Walking up there, seeing the shot, it never crossed my mind that I was in a sand trap. It's very unfortunate...I just thought it was on a piece of dirt the crowd had trampled down. Never thought it was a sand trap. I looked at it a lot, never once thought it was a bunker."