Wonders will never cease. “I’m practicing more now than I ever have,” stated Colin Montgomerie with chirpy intent.

Of course, practice didn’t necessarily mean perfect for Monty down the years. While many of his peers would spend hour after hour thrashing and clattering away on the range after a round, Montgomerie always maintained that such a rigorous approach simply cemented their errors.

The phrase, “look, there’s the lone figure of Monty in the gloaming going to get another bucket of balls,” is a spouting nobody ever made at a golf tournament. But wait. With advancing years comes an upping of the ante. In this game, you can’t afford to stand still and Montgomerie is doing all he can to keep his nose in front on the fiercely competitive senior scene.

This week in Colorado, the 55-year-old tees-up in the US Senior Open as he forms part of a shimmering cast of celebrated golfing oldies who are as golden as the vaults of Fort Knox.

With three senior majors to his name, Monty is eager for more and his recent victory in the Shipco Masters in Denmark on the Staysure Tour – the new name for the European Senior Tour – showed that his dedicated approach is reaping the rewards.

“In that event in Denmark which I won, I opened with a 71 which was disappointing for me in so many ways so I went to the range,” he recalled.

“Some of the guys like Gordon Brand Jnr, Peter Baker and Barry Lane couldn’t believe it and they said: ‘Monty, we’ve never seen you on the range before, what the hell’s going on?’ I said to them: ‘Actually lads, I do this most days now after my rounds in the US’, and they go, ‘s**t, this is serious now’.

“I’ve found that the standard is such that I can’t stand still, I’ve got to improve. Even as I age, I’ve got to get better. The times that I won the order of merit every year (on the regular tour) I felt I had to improve every year to stand still and that’s the same on the Senior Tour. As soon as you drop standards, there are new guys coming through and you’re going to get overtaken.

“I mean, you’re playing against the likes of Steve Stricker who is still competing and contending in PGA Tour events and majors.”

Montgomerie’s lust for sporting life remains unslakeable and he is always happy to discuss golfing affairs, particularly his own. When he is in that beaming, cheery, carnival mood, you half expect him to be accompanied by his own bunting and brass band. The former Ryder Cup talisman continues to savour his senior service.

“The enjoyment level is the highest it’s ever been,” he said. “There’s less pressure on me to fight for a standard of living for my family or whatever it might be. I’m more relaxed and enjoying my golf more. And as you’ve heard me say many times, when you enjoy something you’re usually quite good at it. If I’d played like this in the 90s I’d have done as well as I did then.

“There are a few new faces coming onto the tour soon. Darren Clarke is coming in this year I believe and next year you have the likes of Jim Furyk and Ernie Els. And what does Phil Mickelson do in the next couple of years?

“It’s great for the tour and the more the merrier as far as I’m concerned. They’ll all get a shock at the standard when they come on the Senior Tour. I was no different.”

There have been plenty of reasons to raise a glass to some of Montgomerie’s achievements down the years so it’s hardly surprising that he is doing his bit in an ambassadorial role for Loch Lomond Whiskies.

Kicking back and pouring down one or two sturdy drams to toast a golfing job well, though, has never been the Montgomerie way. Resting on one’s laurels is not something the Scot would settle for.

“I’ve never been a great celebrator,” said Montgomerie, who has racked up 12 wins on the over-50s scene. “As soon as I won an event I would always worry and think, ‘is that going to be the last one?’ So I would always go and do something to make sure it wasn’t.”

With that indefatigable competitive spirit of his, there are probably a few more wins to enjoy yet.