The first BMW International Open was held in 1989. The winner of the inaugural tournament was Northern Ireland’s David Feherty, who has since gone on to enjoy a successful career as a TV expert in the USA. Like now, the venue for the first tournament was Golfclub München Eichenried. Only between 1994 and 1996 did the event switch to St. Eurach Land- und Golfclub. Since 2012, the venue has alternated between Eichenried and Gut Lärchenhof, near Cologne.
The roll of honour at the BMW International Open includes many big names. Record winners, with two wins apiece, are American Paul Azinger (1990, 1992), Denmark’s Thomas Bjørn (2000, 2002), Pablo Larrazábal from Spain (2011, 2015), and Sweden's Henrik Stenson (2006, 2016). The youngest – and, to date, the only German – winner is Martin Kaymer, who claimed an emotional victory at the 20thanniversary of the tournament in 2008, aged 23 years and 177 days. Other winners include Sandy Lyle, Robert Karlsson, Colin Montgomerie, Lee Westwood, Miguel Ángel Jiménez, Henrik Stenson, Ernie Els and John Daly, who won in 2001 with the lowest score in the history of the tournament (261 shots, -27).
Spectators appreciate the relaxed atmosphere at the BMW International Open. The event also enjoys an excellent reputation among the professional golfers, thanks in no small part to the excellent conditions provided by organiser BMW. These include the course itself, which is always immaculately prepared, as well as the seamless organisation, popular evening events and player care, which includes the BMW shuttle service and test cars for the players.