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Golf Today > Tour Schedules > 2007 > Champions Tour > Administaff Small Business Classic > Round 3


Bernard Langer coasts to record equalling win

Bernhard Langer is quickly wearing out his welcome on the Champions Tour.

Langer matched the Champions Tour scoring records for a 54-hole event, closing with an 8-under 64 for an eight-stroke victory Sunday in the Administaff Small Business Classic.

The German star, playing in his fourth Champions Tour event since turning 50 on Aug. 27, birdied the final three holes to finish at 25-under 191 and match the scoring records for relation to par and low score. He opened with rounds of 62 and 65.

"Some of the guys in the locker room kidded me and said, `Why don't you find somewhere else to play,"' Langer said. "I'll play one more and decide what I'm going to do next year."

Loren Roberts also had a 25-under 191 total in the 2006 MasterCard Championship, and Bruce Fleisher finished the 2002 RJR Championship at 19-under 191.

No one could challenge Langer in his wire-to-wire victory.

Mark O'Meara and Tom Kite tried. O'Meara (68) was second and, Kite (69), trying to win for the first time in his home state, was another shot back.

"We all got hammered," Kite said. "I was pleased with the way I played, but Bernhard did some awesome things out there. We weren't able to put any heat on him."

Kite had one of his better tournaments and still remained winless this year.

"I seem to catch guys when they hare having a hot week," Kite said.

Langer earned $255,000. Earlier this year, the two-time Masters winner lost a playoff to Rory Sabbatini in the PGA Tour's Colonial in Fort Worth. Langer isn't sure how he'll manage his tournaments next year.

"People ask me where I'm going to play next year," Langer said. "I don't know yet.

"You can play them both but is it a good thing, that's the question. I'm not sure I have the answer. If you divide your time on both tours you're not going to be on the top of either one. I used to do that on the European Tour and the American tour and played great golf."

Langer started the tournament on Friday with a birdie and an eagle and he never eased his pace, leading each of the three days.

Kite reached 15 under with an eagle on the second hole to cut Langer's lead to three, but the German pushed the margin to four at No. 6 and never was even mildly tested again. Langer finished with a flourish, with five birdies on the final seven holes.

"I wasn't able to follow the eagle with birdies," Kite said. "I made some pars for a long time after that. But I can't complain. I had a low score."

Jay Haas, the tour's leading money winner, overcame a quadruple bogey on the par-3 third hole and rallied for a 67 to tie for fourth with Lonnie Nielsen (68) at 14 under.

Haas earned $91,800 to pad his Champions Tour money lead.

Haas started the tournament in second place behind Loren Roberts in Charles Schwab points. Haas has led in points for 19 weeks, including seven weeks in a row, but Roberts won last week's Constellation Energy Senior Players Championship to get the lead.

Haas needed to win the tournament to surpass Roberts for the points lead. Haas earned 92 points this week and now trails Roberts by 69 points.

John Cook and Phil Blackmar played in their first Champions Tour events. Cook closed with a 69 to tie for 36th at 6 under, while Blackmar shot a 76 to tie for 70th at 2 over.

Kite would like to see Langer on the Champions Tour.

"It's good for the Champions Tour. It's good for our business," Kite said. "If he does, we'll all have to step up and play well."


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