Boonchu Ruangkit set a Staysure Tour record ten years ago, a record that still stands to this day, as the Thai star won three Staysure Tour events back-to-back.
A decade on from the achievement the feat still has Ruangkit’s name to it, with players coming close but no one able to match the incredible accomplishment set by one of Thailand’s golf icons.
Aberdeen Brunei Senior Masters presented by Stapleford Forum
The opening victory took place in Brunei at the Aberdeen Brunei Senior Masters presented by Stapleford Forum, where Ruangkit defeated Frankie Minoza of the Philippines in a play-off.
The duo both carded rounds of 66 to finish level at 14 under par, with extra holes needed to decide where the title would go. For Ruangkit, he must have feared history was about to repeat itself, having lost in a play-off at The Empire Hotel and Country Club at the Brunei Open on the Asian Tour 12 months previously.
However, he kept his composure and a par at the second extra hole after both men had parred the first was enough to win his maiden Staysure Tour title.
“I’m very happy to win my first Senior Tour title – it has given me great confidence,” said Ruangkit. “Even though I lost the Brunei Open here last year I still really like this course, because it’s been good to me.
“I was very nervous for the play-off, and it didn’t help that the wind started to blow a little. But I managed to control my nerves, and I’m just so happy to have won – although I feel a little sorry for Frankie, because he played very well.”
Chang Thailand Senior Masters presented by ISPS
The 53-year-old clinched his second title on the over 50s circuit just seven days later as he powered to a stunning 11 shot victory on home soil at Royal Gems Golf Club and Sports Club.
Rounds of 64-66-65 saw him race clear of the chasing pack to finish at 21 under par for a total of 195, setting the-then record for the lowest 54-hole score to par in Staysure Tour history.
His second successive win saw him become the first player in two years to win back-to-back events, with the victories moving him to the top of the Order of Merit.
“I am extremely pleased with my performance today and very proud of what I have achieved here this week,” said Ruangkit.
“To be honest, I didn’t know that there was a chance to break some Senior Tour records but I am delighted that I have managed to get my name in the history books and extremely proud to have done it in my home country as well.”
Berenberg Bank Masters
Ruangkit’s historic third victory came at the Links Course at Fancourt in South Africa as the Thai held off the challenge from home favourite Bobby Lincoln and the winning 2002 Ryder Cup Captain Sam Torrance to lift the Berenberg Bank Masters trophy.
Unlike his previous victories, Ruangkit needed patience and precision at the South African venue, as rounds of 69-78-69 saw him finish the event as the only player under par at three under, with Lincoln and Torrance three strokes back.
With his win, Ruangkit also became the quickest player to win three times on the over 50s, beating Brian Huggett’s 17-year-old record, following his third success in only his seventh event.
“I’m very happy to win three times in a row,” he said. “I’d never thought about winning doing it before but I’m very proud.
“I had not thought about winning the Order of Merit before but I will go to England to play the next event and if it is not too cold I will try to make it four wins.”