Graeme McDowell was delighted to end a two-year victory drought with a three-shot success at the World Golf Challenge in California.
The Portrush golfer topped a strong 18-man field at Thousand Oaks for his first win since October 2010 - the year he memorably claimed the US Open title.
The 33-year-old banked a cheque for one million US Dollars (£624,000) after a four-under round of 68 took him to 17 under for the week. The victory also saw him finish the season ranked 14th in the World rankings.
Aside from his part in Europe’s historic Ryder Cup success, 2012 has not been a halcyon year for McDowell and he admitted yesterday’s win was a big morale boost.
“I’m just over the moon to kind of get the job done. It’s been too long. It’s been a hell of a two years since I sat here as a winner. And we all put winning on a pedestal as the ultimate goal,” said GMAC who recently announced his engagement to American Kristin Snape. “We like to say that it’s all about the processes and going through the motions and trying to get better, but let’s be honest, we all measure ourselves by the wins. I can say that now. “For two years I’ve been saying things like processes and trying to get better and be patient and hopefully the wins will come.
“I got fed up with telling everybody that I’m playing well, playing well. I guess I’m relieved to get across the line and take some nice confidence into this little off period I’ve got coming up.”
GMAC will now take 10 weeks away from the game after a busy end of season schedule during which he simply played too much. He will be busy during his break, moving into a new house at Lake Nona in Orlanda and opening a new restaurant/bar close by named Nona Blue.
He continued, “The game wasn’t giving me a huge amount this year but you never deserve things in this game. The second that you think you deserve something you’re not going to get it at that point in your life.
“You gotta just try and stay in there and try and keep doing it. It hasn’t really given me a lot of love this year, but this will certainly give me something nice to think about in the off season. “We’ll put a little turkey on the table in a few weeks time. This 10 weeks off is huge for me to allow me to reset my goals and get ready for a big year next year. This victory will give me some nice momentum going into the off season.”