(TIS) — 2017 was a year to remember for Bernhard Langer. The
60-year-old ageless German put together one of the finest PGA Tour Champions seasons on record winning seven times (a 26% clip) including three majors (he now has 10 total, the most ever for guys 50+) and led the money list by a remarkable $1 million. Some would even call it Tiger-esque. However, nobody could predict what was about to unfold on Sunday at the Charles Schwab Cup Championship.
Langer, who entered the week in the top spot in the season-long race, got off to a less than stellar start at Phoenix C.C., but fought his way back into the mix on Sunday by firing a sizzling 64. Unfortunately, it left him in a tie for 12th. Meanwhile, Kevin Sutherland ended up not only winning the event (his first of the year) but automatically was handed Schwab Cup since he entered the week at #5 in the standings.
That’s when things got awkward. At the trophy presentation when Sutherland’s name was called as the 2017 Champion, Langer stood up proudly smiling and waving as he made his way to the podium like he’s done the previous three years.
“Wow, this is a real honor. What an incredible season,” Langer said while gazing at the trophy that obviously wasn’t his. “There are so many people I’d like to thank…”
It was at that point the tournament director whispered to Langer that he actually didn’t win. After a few seconds, Langer looked at the trophy, then the audience, and then decided to make a clean break for it sprinting to the parking lot with the prize in hand.
Authorities tracked him down shortly after and delivered the trophy to Sutherland.
“This is some serious BS,” the usually reserved Langer said to reporters as he was escorted off the premises. “I’ll be back.”