Golf News for Wednesday, May 23, 2007 | People

Padraig Harrington keys on upcoming BMW PGA Championship

Padraig Harrington, who realised two lifelong ambitions by winning The European Tour Order of Merit in 2006 and the 2007 Irish Open, will now turn his attention to the BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth Club, which presents him with the chance to claim the €1 million bonus on offer to the winner of both the Irish Open and BMW PGA titles.

The Irish Ryder Cup player returns to Surrey to tackle the West Course with a new sense of purpose which stems from claiming the Harry Vardon Trophy as The European Tour Order of Merit champion at Valderrama and his national Open at Adare Manor Hotel & Golf Resort.

The Dubliner, who beat Welshman Bradley Dredge in a play-off to end a 25 year wait for an Irish winner of his native Open, now looks ahead to the BMW PGA Championship and pointed out: “These are two great weeks on The European Tour Schedule and I always look forward to them immensely.

“Each event stands alone as a great title but this year it’s nice to know there is a special €1 million bonus for winning both titles. I think the bonus and associated prizes like that add to the excitement and the buzz of an event.”

Harrington, aiming to become the first Irish winner since Harry Bradshaw 49 years ago, added: “Coming back to Wentworth as Number One in Europe makes me very proud and, yes, you unquestionably walk a bit taller when you win something like the Vardon Trophy. Winning any European Tour title is a thrill but winning the overall crown was very special to me.

“The BMW PGA Championship has a wonderful heritage, a premier title partner, a course with its own long and illustrious history and a list of champions that is second to none.

“Put all those elements together and you have an event of considerable magnitude fit for the world stage. That is where this Championship stands and deservedly so. Wentworth presents a great challenge, undoubtedly one of the best we face on Tour each year and I am looking forward to playing the West Course again, and hopefully playing well.”

The 2007 BMW PGA Championship boasts the strongest international field on The 2007 European Tour Schedule to date, with many of the world’s best players in action. Tickets will be available on the Gate for each of the four days of the Championship, May 24-27, or online by visiting www.europeantourtickets.com. All four days will be broadcast live on BBC Television.

For further information, please contact:
European Tour Communications Division
Tel: +44 (0) 1344 840400 Fax: +44 (0) 1344 840444
Email: media@europeantour.com