Bernhard Langer is one win away from history.
Langer won the 2023 Chubb Classic on Sunday for his 45th victory on the PGA Tour Champions, tying the mark long held by Hale Irwin.
Langer, 65, got to 45 wins in 318 events; Irwin did so in 273.
On a Sunday where Champions tour stars Steve Stricker, Steven Alker, Padraig Harrington, Fred Couples and rookie Justin Leonard lingered in the top 10, it was Dicky Pride who gave Langer the most serious run for the title.
Pride aced the par-3 10th hole and then made birdies on Nos. 12, 15 and 16 as he forged a tie with Langer down the stretch. Langer birdied Nos. 12, 14 and 15 to keep pace but then Pride found trouble on the 17th hole. He hit his tee shot right, where it bounced off a cart path and dove into the woods. Pride did salvage bogey with a 10-foot putt to stay a shot back.
But Langer essentially put the tournament away by draining a 30-footer on 17, only the second birdie produced by the entire field on Sunday. That gave him a two-shot lead at 16 under.
LANGER FROM DEEP@BernhardLanger6 birdies No. 17 to take a two shot lead heading into the final hole @ChubbClassic. pic.twitter.com/LGCFSIPfOG
— PGA TOUR Champions (@ChampionsTour) February 19, 2023
He then birdied the last to post a final-round 65 and finish at 17 under. In his three rounds this week, Langer recorded 19 birdies and just two bogeys, with both of them coming in Saturday’s second round. He successfully defended his title and has now claimed the Chubb five times. Irwin won the Turtle Bay Championship in Hawaii six times, which is the most Champions wins at the same tournament.
Langer, who has 12 wins since turning 60, will seek his record-setting 46th win on the circuit in two weeks at the Cologuard Classic in Tucson, Arizona.
Pride, needing eagle on the par-5 18th, hit his second over the green, chipped it back past the hole, then three-putted for bogey for a 68. He finished at 13 under.
Stricker birdied the par-5 closing hole to shoot a 66 and finish 14 under. Padraig Harrington closed with a 65 to also finish 14 under and tie for second.
Fred Couples had the lead Sunday before posting back-to-back 7s, as he tripled the 11th and doubled the 12 to fall from 14 under to 9 under. He did eagle the par-5 15th to get back into the top 10.