Fresh from an inspired top 25 finish at The 147th Open, Bernhard Langer now has his sights fixed on creating history when he reacquaints himself with the Old Course at St Andrews as defending champion of The Senior Open Presented by Rolex.
The two-time Masters Tournament winner, who turns 61 next month, will go in search of an historic 4th Senior Open, after becoming the first person in history to reach the milestone of ten after last year’s Senior Open victory at Royal Porthcawl.
At the same time, Langer will aim to overtake Gary Player and Tom Watson by becoming the first player to capture The Senior Open four times. With The Senior Open taking place on the Old Course for the first time in its 32-year history, Langer can’t wait to become a record-breaker at the Home of Golf.
“It’s always fantastic to come back to the Old Course,” said Langer. “It could always be the last time, when you reach our age, you never know when there’s going to be another opportunity.
“It was awesome to be at Carnoustie, and then we play St Andrews back-to-back. It doesn’t get much better than that.
“I love links golf, and I love playing these Championship courses. It’s great to be here and to have this kind of weather, and the way the golf course looks is phenomenal.”
Langer, who earned his place at Carnoustie last week after last year’s Senior Open success, believes he couldn’t have asked for any better way to prepare for what promises to be a tough test on the Old Course.
“It was good just to play on links turf, get the feel of the ground, the sand and the wind,” he said. “I can’t see a much better way to prepare than that. I’m excited about this week and looking forward to it.
“I don’t really remember any vivid details of my first visit to St Andrews. But I remember I didn’t like the course at all. It was one of my first links experiences and I just though ‘this is not golf’. You’re standing on a tee, you see a couple of sand dunes and don’t know where to go – you hit it and think it’s good, then you end up in a pot bunker and have blind shots.
“Once I got around the second, third and fourth times, it started to grow on me. Later, I really learned it’s a phenomenally designed course and a great test of golf.”
A winner of two Green Jackets, 42 European Tour events and 38 over-50s titles, Langer believes that a victory on the Old Course this week would rank among one of his best achievements.
“It would certainly rank up there,” he added. “I’ve been blessed with a long and successful career. I’ve won all over the world, played Ryder Cups and won a couple of Majors on the regular Tour, ten on the Senior Tour, and I’ve won in my home country. All of those rank up there.
“Winning here at St Andrews would mean a lot, no doubt about it.”
Langer is one of 38 former Ryder Cup players, 20 Major Champions and 23 Senior Major Champions teeing it up at The Home of Golf this week, joining a field which includes Sir Nick Faldo, Tom Lehman, Colin Montgomerie, Tom Watson and Ian Woosnam.
Article courtesy of European Tour.