Graeme McDowell shot a closing 67 to post a nine-under-par 72-hole total and win the Alstom Open de France by four shots from South Africa’s Richard Sterne at Le Golf National in Paris.
The Northern Irishman has now claimed three titles this year, following the PGA Tour’s RBC Heritage in April and the Volvo World Matchplay at Bulgaria’s striking Thracian Cliffs in May.
McDowell – who came into the event off the back of five missed cuts in six strokeplay events – said:
“It’s very special of the last couple of months. It’s been a bit of a battle and a bit of a funny year. My game hasn’t felt far away most weeks but I have missed a lot more cuts than normal and missing cuts hurts.
“It certainly motivated me a lot the last few weeks. The US Open was a tough one to take and missing the cut in Ireland last week, it made me more hungry to want to be in positions like I was this afternoon.”
McDowell started the final round tied with playing partner Sterne, but made a 15-footer for birdie at the opening hole to move one clear.
McDowell bogied the seventh and Sterne made birdies at the front nine’s two par 5s to take a one-shot lead at the turn, however.
The Ulsterman moved into the lead again after 12 holes and extended his advantage to two shots after a somewhat fortuitous bounce on the 16th.
Another lucky bounce led to birdie on 17, and after Sterne dropped a shot at the same hole, the title was more or less sewn up.
Spaniard Eduardo De La Riva secured his tour card with a tie for third alongside Englishman Graeme Storme, with Simon Dyson carding a final-round 71 for outright fifth and his best result of the season.
The European Tour now heads to Castle Stuart for the Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Open before moving to Muirfield for the Open Championship.
The Alstom Open de France
Le Golf National, Paris, France
July 4-7, par 71, €3,000,000
1) Graeme McDowell (NIR) 69-69-70-67 = 275 €500,000
2) Richard Sterne (RSA) 68-69-71-71 = 279 €333,330
T3) Eduardo De La Riva (ESP) 72-67-72-69 €168,900
T3) Graeme Storm (ENG) 70-68-73-69 = 280 €168,900
5) Simon Dyson (ENG) 70-68-72-71 = 281 €127,200
T6) Jamie Donaldson (WAL) 70-70-71-71 = 282 €97,500
T6) Richard Green (AUS) 69-70-70-73 = 282 €97,500
T8) Thomas Bjorn (DEN) 68-69-74-72 = 283 €61,800
T8) Stephen Gallacher (SCO) 68-70-7570 = 283 €61,800
T8) David Howell (ENG) 69-71-69-74 = 283 €61,800
T8) Soren Kjeldsen (DEN) 69-68-73-73 = 283 €61,800
T8) Gareth Maybin (NIR) 71-73-71-68 = 283 €61,800
Bold signifies Titleist golf ball usage