"It surprises me after all these years that is still the best finish", he said of his performance in miserable weather in 1998, when Mark O'Meara eventually won the title in a play-off against Brian Watts.
"It was certainly a dream come true winning The Open Championship previous year".
He admitted he's already taken the famous trophy jet-skiing in Florida and sipped various "drinks of French heritage" out of it at gatherings all over the world.
'But at the same time I don't feel like I've had the consistency I want to have, and to be honest I didn't think I had that past year if I compare it to 2013 for instance.
"It's nearly become part of the family", he said just over 24 hours after handing it back to The R&A. "There were a lot of aspects of my game that I was really, really pleased about".
"I've made an official promise that if I ever win the Claret Jug again, I'm going skydiving with it", Stenson said.
It is little wonder that Rose, now 36, spoke of "unfinished business" on Tuesday as he prepared for Thursday's first round, when he will go out in a group with former Open champion Louis Oosthuizen of South Africa and Justin Thomas. I've always found it a bit easier to learn from other sportsmen than I have from golfers. "But it won't stop me from trying to win it, though". "Given how long and successful a career I've had, I think that's pretty much what we're aiming for, a few more chances to win more major championships".
"Sometimes when you come out of the injury phase and you feel good fresh and ready to play golf again, you expect your game to be there".
"You'd take a major championship anywhere, but if they happen to line up a special venue, for me to do it at Royal Birkdale would be obviously a full-circle moment".
"It's one of my favourite tracks", he added. It's the one tournament that I've dreamed about since I was a young boy, and I think especially at Royal Birkdale. I think if you kind of go up and down the centreline, given where the pin is, you're going to give yourself decent looks for birdie, but I'm not looking to be overly aggressive, either off the tee or into the greens this week. "Still, I'm at the stage now where I can put the disappointing performances behind me and focus on a special week".
Rose - who warmed up for Birkdale by attending Roger Federer's victory over Marin Cilic in the Wimbledon final on Sunday - has had mixed results since winning Olympic gold in Rio previous year.