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Chigwell's Marc Brenner dreaming of the green jacket after becoming youngest UK player to turn professional
A Chigwell golfer who recently became the youngest player in the country to turn professional is now dreaming of playing at the Masters and wearing Augusta’s famous green jacket.
Marc Brenner, 17, turned professional on August 1 and now can’t wait to tee off an exciting career on the course in May, when he finishes his studies at Epping Forest College.
The talented teenager began playing golf at the age of two after being given a set of clubs as a present. He started taking lessons when he was five and two years later was given his first handicap of 54.
Ten years on, Brenner, has played for Essex, Great Britain, and has achieved his first major goal: turning pro. Now though, he’s setting his sights higher.
“Turning pro was a massive moment for me,” he said. “I’ve been gearing up to this for my whole life so I’m just so glad to have turned professional and to be recognised by the PGA feels amazing.
“It’s such a relief. It means I’ll be able to put everything into it, it’s my job and I can earn money to support myself. Hopefully it’s the start of something really special.
“My dream is to play on the PGA Tour and European Tour – that’s what I’ve always wanted to do ever since I started watching golf on TV.
“Augusta is my dream, if I could play at the Masters and win the green jacket that would be amazing. It would mean that all the work had been worthwhile.”
Brenner plays at West Essex Golf Club where he puts in around 42 hours of practice every week.
Calm and composed, the 17-year-old says he models his game on England’s former World number one Luke Donald.
“I really admire Luke Donald’s game,” Brenner said. “Like me he’s quite small in stature and he doesn’t try anything too difficult – he keeps it simple and I like his demeanour, he’s very calm.
“I don’t try and be too aggressive or try things that are unrealistic. I play a strategy game.”
He added: “I love golf, I only ever feel comfortable with a club in my hand. It’s all I talk about and I love the challenge – the different shots, the different courses – I love everything about it.”
Turning professional means Brenner will have more time to practise but it also gives him access to almost any course in the world.
Testing his swing on some of the globe’s trickiest fairways doesn’t faze the teenager, who is the youngest player to have played at some of the world’s leading courses, including the Old Course at St Andrews.
After getting special permission from the R&A, seven-year-old Brenner was given permission to play on the famous course and, even at a young age, was holding his own.
“There’s a rule at St Andrews where you have to carry your own bag,” Brenner said. “But because I was too small to carry it, I had someone carry it for me.
“So I was seven years old, playing at St Andrews, with someone carrying my bag. It was fantastic.”