Scott Joins an Illustrious Club
By Mike Crowther
It was only
when Scott Clarkson saw the names on the silverware that
he realised what he had achieved.
Driving home from Pannal Golf Club with his dad, the Yorkshire
Boys Amateur Championship trophy in his hands, he looked
at the engravings highlighting previous winners - Howard
Clark, Simon Dyson, Danny Willett (the former world number
one amateur who’s just turned professional).
sink in until that moment," said the Skipton and Ilkley
"It wasn't a case of thinking, right, you've made it'
but rather what a stepping stone it could be when you see
those kind of names."
it is too early to start comparing him with European Tour
players but the 17-year-old displayed the kind of mental
strength needed to succeed in the game.
After an opening-round 73, Clarkson dropped a shot at the
first in his afternoon round and then hit his tee shot on
the second out of bounds.
But he dug deep to make birdie with his second ball, steadied
himself with a few pars and then carded four birdies in
a row from the seventh to the tenth. His revival saw him
end up with a 69 and was enough to pip Bingley St Ives'
Liam O'Neill to the trophy by one shot.
Clarkson - who was also under-16 county champion at Knaresborough
two years ago - said: "I stood on the third tee and
thought you have to be mentally strong and show what you
are made of.' "Two years ago, I could have given it
up and thought I was on for a big number. But I got a grip
of myself, tried to burn it up and it paid off."
Now playing out of Ilkley this year, his triumph has earned
him a first appearance for the senior Harrogate Union team
on Sunday - ironically against Bradford at Cleckheaton.
The host side includes several youngsters with whom Clarkson
used to play with for Bradford's junior team, including
O'Neill, Sam Jewell and Nigel Colbeck.
He said: "I'm not going to fire the gun and say I'll
beat him or I'll beat him.
"They are all good players and it will just be nice
to play against people I know."
The two handicapper's
game is blossoming under the tuition of Harrogate Golf Club's
Bill Ferguson, who made his name coaching Colin Montgomerie.
He said: "If something is slightly off he notices it
he is quick to pay tribute to Skipton where his game first
took shape in the club's thriving junior academy under Ben
He said: "They did everything for me in terms of paying
for golf lessons and looking after me. I have moved to Ilkley
to better myself but Skipton remains a big part of my golf."