Darren Pearce

Age: 51

Turned pro: 23
Home club: Barnard castle (26 years)

career highlights
Played in the ISPS Handa PGA Seniors Championship at Close House in 2015

Also in 2015, holed out on the 18th hole at Brancepeth to win the NE/NW PGA Strokeplay Championship and complete the career grand slam of NE/NW PGA majors

Played in Final Qualifying for the Open Championship with US Open winner Michael Campbell and Gordon Brand Jnr

Past captain of the NE/NW PGA

What are you doing this season?
I split my diary between working in the pro shop and teaching at Barnard Castle, and playing golf locally and on the senior circuit. I’m entering the Senior PGA Professional Championship again this year, aiming to qualify for the European Seniors Tour event having made it through last season. I’ll also be playing as full a schedule as possible on the NE/NW PGA circuit. It’s a good group of guys and the standard is high so the events are always good fun to compete in – and it gets me out and about.”

How did you get into the game?
As a 10-year-old I was looking around the garage of our new house and found an old golf club, a few balls and a handful of tees. I headed out to the field opposite our house with a few other kids and started chasing a ball around the field. My dad got me some lessons at Castle Eden Golf Club and I progressed through the junior system. I showed some promise early, got cut from 36 to 26 in my first competition and went from there. I won the Northern Boys, played for England Boys and won events locally and nationally before turning pro as a 23-year-old.”

What does the future hold?
“I may take a look at qualifying for the European Seniors Tour, but I’ll base that decision on how well I’m competing. Apart from that, I’ll be splitting my time between working at Barnard Castle and playing as regularly as I can.”

Interesting fact:
Started as an assistant to last month’s Pro-File star John Harrison at Barnard Castle.