Scottish teenager Sam Locke, a part-time barista, just qualified for The Open Championship

By Wayne Staats
Published on
Scottish teenager Sam Locke, a part-time barista, just qualified for The Open Championship

A 19-year-old barista will be teeing off against the best in the world at The Open Championship.

Sam Locke, from Scotland, qualified for the The Open Championship at Carnoustie by winning The Renaissance Club qualifying event on Tuesday, finishing 7-under. Instead of celebrating on Wednesday, Locke was back at work at Paul Lawrie Academy, serving coffee to Lawrie himself.

“He makes a mean latte does our Sam,” Lawrie tweeted. “He’s got loads of time to prepare btw...He’s a top lad who deserves all the plaudits coming his way.”

Locke can get some advice from Lawrie, who won the Open Championship in 1999 at Carnoustie. Lawrie, however, will not play at the Open Championship. He announced June 25 that he’s withdrawing from all Tour events for this season because of back and foot injuries.

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Locke was not yet 1 year old when Lawrie won the Open in 1999. His father, Andrew, is a PGA professional who works with Lawrie.

"I'm absolutely ecstatic,” Locke told BBC Scotland. “To qualify for the biggest tournament in the world's pretty cool, I can't wait. You don't expect it, you go there to try and qualify but to do it at such a young age, I'm pretty chuffed.

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"It's the biggest tournament with the best players in the world and it'll be good to see how I compare to them.”

There were three Open Championship qualifying spots at each of the four venues. Retief Goosen was one of those other qualifiers, earning his spot at Prince’s Golf Club. But Graeme McDowell missed out on even attempting to qualify, as his clubs were lost in transit from Paris’ Charles de Gaulle Airport on the way to Manchester.

The 2018 Open Championship starts Thursday, July 19.