Best Youth golfers head for Boro

Middlesbrough Golf Club hosts the 44th North of England Open Amateur Youth Golf Championship in association with Northern Golfer, August 7-9

The best young players from around the UK will be heading back to the North East in August for the 44th North of England Open Amateur Youth Golf Championship at Middlesbrough Golf Club – an event which has played an important part in the careers of major champions and European Tour winners.

The event, which is open to players under the age of 23, awards World Amateur Golf Ranking points and has welcomed a number of the UK’s finest players in its history.

A total of 136 players will tee off on Tuesday and Wednesday before a 36-hole cut reduces the field to 40 players and ties for the final two rounds on Thursday.

The leading player will be awarded the MacGill Challenge Trophy, while the leading player under the age of 18 will earn the Fairweather Salver.

Some of British golf’s biggest names have competed in the event in the last 42 years, including three Masters champions – Danny Willett, Sandy Lyle (the third winner of the tournament) and Ian Woosnam. Ryder Cup legend and eight-time European Tour Order of Merit winner Colin Montgomerie went home empty handed from Middlesbrough, as did European Tour winners Ken Ferrie and Graeme Storm, while two-time senior major winner Roger Chapman (1979), David Horsey (2006) and Richard Finch (1998) are all present on the MacGill Challenge Trophy.

Richard Boxall, winner of the event in 1982 – when his hunt to break the 72-hole scoring record of 255 was halted by bad weather, said: “I have good memories of playing in the tournament, and of Middlesbrough and its members who were wonderful hosts, especially David Hunter with whom I stayed.

“I did have a chance of setting a world record and I reckon I would have done it. It was a shame about the fog, but I did win the tournament, which meant a lot to me – as did setting a course record each round.

“Hopefully the players taking part this year will enjoy it as much as I did and I wish the club all success and long may it continue.”

In 2017, Chelmsford’s Arron Edwards-Hill travelled north to battle the weather and claim the MacGill Challenge Trophy with two rounds of 66 on the final day for a two shot victory over Sam Broadhurst, son of European Tour legend Paul.

Arron said: “It was a tough few days but I’m proud to have come through it and get the win. It was well worth the trip and I really enjoyed playing the course and being part of a great event.”

Ahead of the event, we’ve taken a look at where the action will take place over the three days and met with the men tasked with delivering one of our region’s biggest amateur events.