It is the next milestone in Bernhard Langer’s legendary golf career: With his 45th victory on the PGA Tour Champions, the 65-year-old from Anhausen equaled the record of the American Hale Irwin, who also won 45 tournaments in the over 50 -year-olds could win. Now Germany’s golf idol is just one win away from the sole record on the US seniors’ tour.

“There’s been a lot of talk in recent years about catching Hale and there’s a lot of pressure, especially when you’re so close,” Langer said after his triumph. “Then the thoughts go through your head and you’re like, ‘Wow, you’re so close, you don’t want to lose it now. But that’s the wrong way to think like that. You just have to take it one shot at a time focus.”

The Masters winner from 1985 and 1993 did a great job at the Tiburon Golf Club in Naples: Langer defended the title at the Chubb Classic in his adopted home of Florida on Sunday. Thanks to a clean final round of 65, he beat former Ryder Cup captains Steve Stricker of the USA and Ireland’s Padraig Harrington (both 202) with a total of 199 strokes.

competitors full of praise

It was not long before the partly much younger competitors paid homage to them. “It’s great, isn’t it? He never ceases to amaze us all,” said the 55-year-old Stricker. “He just keeps going and staying in shape. He’s amazing, really. 45 wins and he’s still winning at 65. And he’s a nice guy too. I think that’s the coolest thing about it.”

With the success, Langer also improved his own record as the oldest winner on the PGA Tour Champions. He secured the title in Naples at the age of 65 years, 5 months and 23 days. The veteran has been the superstar on the US senior tour for 15 years. In the over-50s category, he has so far earned more than 34 million US dollars in prize money.