A day after matching the Newport Beach Country Club record with an 11-under 60, the 53-year-old former UCLA player had 10 birdies, five bogeys and only three pars in the final round.
"If you wanted to sum up my day, birdie-bogey-birdie, although I didn't do it in that order, but I had two birdies to one bogey, I think, the whole day," Waldorf said. "Way more nervous today because yesterday I was really right in the zone. ... Today I was jumpy."
Waldorf finished with a tournament-record 20-under 193 total. He earned $270,000 to jump from 30th to 19th on the money list with $822,896 and easily qualify for the season-ending Charles Schwab Cup Championship. The top 30 advanced to play next week at Desert Mountain in Scottsdale, Arizona.
The four-time PGA Tour winner was making his 73rd start on the 50-and-over tour. The victory was his first in 292 events since the PGA Tour's 2000 event at Walt Disney World Resort.
"I felt like when I came out here I was playing well," Waldorf said about the Champions Tour. "I struggled a bit, but it's been trending upward the last couple of months. I've had two good rounds a lot. This week I had three."
Waldorf had 26 birdies to tie the tour record for a 54-hole event set by Loren Roberts in 2006 in Hawaii and matched by Fred Couples in the 2011 in San Antonio. Waldorf broke the tournament record of 19 under set by Jay Haas in 2007 and matched by David Frost in 2011.
"It's very competitive out here," Durant said. "All the guys have won so there's not a lot of backing up out here. It's pedal to the metal."
Waldorf birdied the first two holes, bogeyed Nos. 4-6 and birdied Nos. 7-10.
"I started great and then gave myself problems," Waldorf said. "I was getting pars before, but today I got bogeys. I hit a good drive on seven and made the putt and did the same thing on No. 8."
He birdied 13, bogeyed 14, birdied 15 and 16, saved bogey with a tricky downhill 8-footer on the par-3 17th and closed with an 8-foot birdie putt on the par-5 18th.
"I lost some momentum on 14," Waldorf said. "But fortunately I got it back."
Stephen Ames was the only player to move into the top 30 on the money list. He tied for ninth at 12 under after a 67 to earn $41,700 and jump from 31st to 30th with $561,427. Miguel Angel Jimenez, the Spanish star who still plays the European Tour, dropped from 29th to 31st - $6,861 behind Ames. Jimenez played on six events this year on the Champions Tour.