Richie Ramsay roars in delight after winning Cazoo Classic at Hillside
Richie Ramsay celebrated joyously after holing an eight-foot par putt on the 72nd hole to land a fourth DP World Tour triumph with a one-shot victory in the Cazoo Classic at Hillside.
The 39-year-old couldn’t hide his delight, roaring loudly and punching the air a couple of times as as he chalked up a first success since 2015 after a dramatic finish in Southport.
Frenchman Julien Guerrier, the overnight leader, looked to be coasting to victory as he went out in three-under 33 to move to 15-under-par.
But, as things started to unravel for him on the back nine, Ramsay found top gear at just the right time on the Lancashire coast.
The Edinburgh-based Aberdonian birdied the 14th and 15th from 11 feet and 22 respectively before making a solid par at the short 16th.
Standing on the 17th tee, he found himself tied with both Guerrier and local man Paul Waring, who covered the last eight holes in three-under to set the clubhouse target on 13-under-par.
Ramsay hit a great drive only to come up a fraction short with his second but he judged a long putt to perfection to set up a birdie as Guerrier, having been in trouble left off the tee, took a 6.
After being undecided about his club selection from the left rough at the last, Ramsay came up short of the green again.
He then left himself with a longer putt than he’d have liked to clinch victory but this chance wasn’t going to slip from his grasp.
Earlier in the year, the Scot had victory in the Betfred British Masters in his sights at The Belfry before finding water at the last with his second shot and having to settle for a share of third spot behind Dane Thorbjorn Olesen.
Ramsay recorded his maiden win in the 2009 South African Open before adding the Omega European Masters three years later then winning the Hassan Trophy in Morocco in 2015.
"The biggest thing for me was I made a promise to my daughter (Olivia) and I don't break promises to her. I said I would get her a trophy and this one's for her,” declared Ramsay afterwards.
"It just feels unbelievable. The belief. I've had some bad times over the last couple of years but I kept believing, I knew my game was good.
I know about what happened at The Belfry. But it's links golf and I feel like I've always got an advantage when I play links golf.
"There's nothing better than holing a putt under the gun - when it matters, when the tournament is on the line.
"For me, winning is everything, it's what matters in the sport. I felt the nerves coming down the stretch, played great, and just to play well under the gun.
"Obviously I got a bit emotional there at the end. But I haven't won since my daughter was born and that's six years.
"Hopefully she's watching. (Ramsay's wife) Angela's been brilliant. She's never given up on me, sent me a message this morning telling me that she was really proud of me in whatever I accomplish.”
The former US Amateur champion is the second successive Scot to win the Cazoo Classic after Calum Hill landed the title at London Golf Club last year.
"It's just great to get over the line. What a feeling as well, the way I did it, to hole that putt on the last,” he added of a win worth just over £250,000.
"It's just hours and hours of practice and it comes down to one shot and I managed to do it under the gun. It doesn't matter what happens now, I'll remember that for the rest of my life."
Grant Forrest warmed up for his Hero Open title defence at Fairmont St Andrews by finishing in a tie for third on 12-under.