Carnoustie Golf Links and the Carnoustie Golf Club will be displaying a replica US Open trophy this week to mark Carnoustie’s historic links with the year’s third major championship.
The trophy – which is the only US Open replica in the UK – will be on display by the 1st tee of the Championship Course at various times from Thursday 13th June to Sunday 16th June when the 119th US Open takes place at Pebble Beach. Locals and visitors alike are encouraged to have a look and get their photo taken with the iconic trophy.
Carnoustie’s links to the US Open date back to the 19th century and the Smith family history. The trophy is engraved through 1936, to encompass the life of John Smith and his sons in the US Open.
Undoubtedly Carnoustie’s greatest playing exports were the Smith brothers, who between them won three US Open titles (Willie at Baltimore Country Club in 1899, Alex at Onwentsia Club in 1906 and Philadelphia Cricket Club in 1910) and still today remain the only brothers to have both won at least one US Open title.
The youngest Smith sibling, Macdonald, was arguably the most talented player of the brothers claiming 29 professional victories, 18 more than his brothers’ total combined. However, these victories did not include a US Open, although he did finish within three shots of the winning score on five occasions and tied for the lead in 1910 before losing to his older brother Alex in a play-off.
While the Smith brothers were the first key immigrants to the United States from Carnoustie in the early 20th century, there were several hundred young men who emigrated from Carnoustie, taking their excellent club making skills and abundance of golfing talent with them.
The trophy itself resides at Carnoustie Golf Club for six months of the year and spends the other six months at the adopted American home of the Smith Family, Diablo Country Club in California.