Miguel Angel Jimenez put his longevity down to espresso, red wine and his trademark cigars as he set out for a record-breaking 707th European Tour appearance.

The popular Spaniard was relishing the prospect of surpassing the benchmark of Sam Torrance at the Hero Open when he teed off on Thursday at the Forest of Arden in Birmingham on Thursday, 32 years after making his debut on the tour.

Still going strong at the age of 56, Jimenez offered some of the secrets that have kept him going strong in his customary amiable style.

"[It's about] still maintaining myself, some olive oil, espresso, a nice red wine, some cigars too!" he told the European Tour's official website.

"I'm doing what I like to do in my life, when you do what you like to do you never get tired. The last 15 to 20 years I work on my elasticity and that helps, but I do what I like to do."

He added: "Well it's a really nice feeling, it's something you never think about when you start on the tour.

"It's amazing to be here and to set the record this week."

Jimenez is a 21-time winner on the European Tour but is unsure how many more tournaments he will play to extend the record and reflected on being around throughout several generations.

Speaking at a news conference on Wednesday, he said: "It's been 32 years moving around the world playing on different tours.

"Getting to this point and looking back it's amazing. So many players in these 32 years. Playing with Seve [Ballesteros] - our mentor – Gary Player, Arnold Palmer, Jack Nicklaus, Tiger [Woods], Phil Mickelson. All different generations. Now with the new ones coming up.

"Over these 32 years it has been amazing, not only for the 707 tournaments I will reach this week. You never think about how many tournaments you will play in your life.

"I knew in the last couple of years - the way I am playing and feeling on the golf course – that this would be the next target, and here we are.

"I don't know if I want to extend the record. I will play next week and play Valderrama when I come back in a few weeks' time.

"After next week I will go to America to play a couple of events and then back to Valderrama, but I don't have a goal to add more tournaments. The target was to get the record and whatever tournaments are coming up on top of this will be nice."

There have been many achievements over three decades and Jimenez has a few of which he is particularly fond.

He said: "Looking back, having reflections, I've had some nice experiences. I had my first victory in 1992 at the Piaget Open in Belgium.

"Being assistant captain to Seve in 1997 in Valderrama before I played my first Ryder Cup in 1999.

"Looking back, so many great things: winning four times in Hong Kong, winning at Wentworth in 2008, the flagship tournament of the European Tour. The first Spaniard to win what was then the Volvo Masters at Montecastillo. A beautiful life."