From Brian Keogh in Detroit

Padraig Harrington became the first European winner of the US PGA for 78 years at Oakland Hills.

But that wasn't the only milestone reached by the 36 year old Dubliner in Motor City as he lifted his third major from his last six starts in Grand Slams.

The first player since Tiger Woods (2006 Open and PGA) to win back-to-back Major Championships, his 23rd professional victory made him only the fourth European to win the USPGA following Jim Barnes (1916 and 1919), Jock Hutchison (1920) and Tommy Armour (1930).

He was also the first man since Woods to follow a successful Open Championship defence with victory in the season's final major.

Harrington remains at No 3 in the official world ranking behind Woods and Phil Mickelson.

But he has now won three of his last six majors and become the first European Tour player to win back to back Grand Slams.

Coupled with his victory at Royal Birkdale, Harrington's US PGA win was a record seventh Irish victory on the 2008 European Tour International Schedule following Graeme McDowell (Ballantine’s Championship and The Barclays Scottish Open), Damien McGrane (Volvo China Open), Darren Clarke (BMW Asian Open), Peter Lawrie Open de España).

His won worth €867,219 moved him to the top of the Order of Merit with €2,350,555 - the fifth time and third time in a row, in his European Tour career he amassed over €2 million in a single season.

He also gained a lifetime exemption into the USPGA Championship.