CARY, N.C. – After finishing play in the SAS Championship Pro-Am at Prestonwood Country Club on Thursday, defending champion Bernhard Langer was impressed with the course regardless of the wet playing conditions.
“Dark, cold and wet, but it got better as the day went on,” Langer said.
“It’s a very good layout where you have a mixture of some very long holds, some shorter holes. But you need to be precise, you can’t spray it around and the greens are always good so you can make some putts. That’s what I like. The greens are fast and true.”
Currently leading the Champions Tour money list and sitting second in the Charles Schwab Cup standings, Langer described his season as a good ‘bad’ one in which he’s had the chance to win more than the two titles he currently has on the year.
“It’s been the best worst year or the worst best good year I’ve ever had, or something like that,” he said.
“It’s been a very good year, started phenomenal first couple of months and it’s been very solid ever since. But looking back, I probably could have, should have won five or six times and I’ve won twice. With that part I’m not happy, but everything else, I have no reason to complain.”
As SAS Championship newcomers and major winners, Sir Nick Faldo and Colin Montgomerie make their debuts on the Tour at Prestonwood, Langer believes their participation will only enhance the event for local fans.
“I think it’s great that Nick Faldo is playing and Colin Montgomerie. Anybody that’s a Hall of Famer and won majors and has a great career – it adds to the tournament. It helps our Tour, so it’s great to see these guys compete on a regular basis. It’s good for the game of golf.”
No doubt with Faldo and Montgomerie adding to the field’s strength which includes eight other past tournament winners, Langer knows that he’ll have to continue to play well if he wants to repeat as tournament champion.
He’ll also be sure to listen to his younger son who gave him the number to shoot on Sunday last year when he won his first SAS Championship title.
“Yeah, every once in a while we have that conversation on a Saturday night and I say, “well, what do you think I need to shoot tomorrow to a have a chance to win?” So he gives me a number and it’s usually pretty good. I tend to listen to him. He’s been right on many occasions and a few times I’ve pulled it off, and a few times I haven’t, but his number was always pretty good.”
Playing well and up to his son’s expectations may make the difference in Langer’s good season becoming an even better one with another SAS Championship trophy in his hands.