BEN Schmidt became just the fourth golfer to win both the Brabazon Trophy and the Carris Trophy in the same season when he won the English Boys’ Under 18 Amateur Strokeplay Championship at Moor Park Golf Club.
The 16-year-old from Rotherham Golf Club became the youngest-ever winner of the Brabazon Trophy when winning the English Open Amateur Strokeplay Championship, at Alwoodley, in June,
And he completed the rare double when he claimed his second national title of the season by claiming the Carris Trophy at the championship’s original home in Hertfordshire.
His wins in both the Brabazon and the Carris mean he joins Hamphsire’s Paddy Hine, who became the first junior to do the double in 1949, aged just 17, and Sandy Lyle, who broke that record by a matter of weeks, at the age of 17 in 1975.
Another future Ryder Cup player – Peter Baker – was the last player to land both prestigious titles in the same year in 1985.
Schmidt started the last day as favourite after opening with rounds of 72, 67 and 72 even though he was one shot behind William Skipp, from Eaglescliffe Golf Club, who topped the leaderboard on six-under par.
And he had to battle all the way after dropping three shots over the first five holes before recovering to post a level par 72 and finish tied with Spain’s Rodrigo Martin on five-under par 283.
Martin, who hasd trailed Skipp by four shots with 18 to play, holed an 18-foot birdie putt on the 72nd green to tie with Schmidt.
But on the first extra hole the Spanish teenager carved his tee shot into the trees on the right of the fairway.
Martin failed to get up-and-down from the edge of the green as Schmidt hit a wedge to 20-feet and two-putted to take the trophy with a par.
“It’s been a tough day,” Schmidt admitted. “I’ve not played my best golf, or anything like it, but I dug in and eventually found something on the back nine to help me get across the line.”
I didn’t really feel comfortable all day,” added Schmidt who grew up playing junior golf at the same club as 2016 Masters winner Danny Willett.
“But I got the job done and I’m very pleased with that. It’s great to get another win under my belt.
“My goal this year was simply to play as much good golf as I could. I put a lot of work in over the winter.
“I was hoping that would pay off but not for one second did I think it would be anything like this. It’s been a bit mad but I’m really enjoying it.”
Norway’s Herman Sekne closed with a 70 to finish tied in third place alongside Skipp, from Stockton-on-Tees, on 285, while Delamare Forest’s Oscar Doran fired a 69 to finish in a share of fifth place with Australian Louis Dobbelaar two shots further back
Scotland’s Calum Scott shared of seventh with another Delamare Forest teenager in Jake Hibbert, Berkshire’s Archie Smith, from Bearwood Lakes, and Torquay’s Craig Passmore
The English trio were joined by Egor Eroshenko from the Czech Republic, closed with a best-of-the-day 66.
Scott also went on to collect the Hazards Salver awarded to the leading competitor aged under 16 – a trophy won in the past by the likes of Lyle, Baker and Justin Rose.
The U16s contest produced a Scottish one-two with the Nairn youngster beating compatriot Aidan O’Hagen by a shot on level par.
England’s Jack Ingham, who plays out of Holland’s Eindhovensche Club was third on four-over.
An Italian squad comprising Luca Civello, Lorenzo Bruzzone and Alessandro Gambetti won the Nations Cup played over the first two rounds.
They finished on level-par one shot ahead of England’s A team made up of Schmidt, Stoke Park’s British Boys Champion Conor Gough, and Max Hopkins, from Bishop’s Stortford.
•Only six other players have won both Brabazon and Carris titles in their amateur careers – the last was Hampshire’s Darren Wright, who won the men’s title in 2010 at Hoylake having won the Boys’ at Sherwood Forest four years earlier.
Before that Sussex’s Gary Evans, who claimed the Brabazon by way of a tie two years in a row in 1990 and 1991, the first coming four years after his Carris victory at Moor Park.
From 1988, the Carris became the official England U18 Championship and has moved around the country returning to Moor Park every four years and then every five from 2014.