A HELSBY High school pupil reckons consistency will be the key on his return to the US Kids European Championship.
Ben Richards will be up against the world’s best young players and looking to improve on last year’s top-20 finish when he heads to Scotland next month.
The championship runs from May 31-June 4 at East Lothian and the 14-year-old from Frodsham is looking forward to testing himself on the links courses.
“I want to improve a bit and try not to have the kind of dodgy round that I had last year – to play consistent golf over the three days,” said Ben.
To reacquaint himself with the particular challenges of seaside golf, Ben last week played an event in the Nick Faldo Series at West Lancs.
He said: “I’m on and off at the moment – I’ll have good rounds and bad rounds.
“I am trying as much as I can to put the practice in and improve.”
Ben started playing golf aged four. His home club is Sandiway in Northwich, but he is also a member at Pryors Hayes in Tarvin. Coached by Freddie Valenti, he currently plays off six.
Ben’s 2010 highlights were winning theŠWallasey Under 15s Junior Open and finishing runner-up in the Cheshire U14s Junior Championships.
Ben, who also represented Cheshire in inter-counties matches, has played in the annual US Kids European Championships since its inception in 2008. His other big-tournament experiences abroad include the Callaway Junior World Championships in San Diego in 2008 and 2009 and last year’s Menorca U16s Junior Open.
Ben said: “I want to keep going and be competing against the best in the country.”
Would he like to one day turn professional?
“It would be nice but I have other ambitions with school stuff as well,” he added.