A brief history of the Claret Jug

Claret Jug

The Claret Jug is perhaps the most iconic trophy in golf, and it has a pretty interesting history, too.

This year, Collin Morikawa will be defending the trophy at the 150th Open Championship at The Old Course. It’s a trophy that has become iconic in the world of sport, however, when the Open was first contested, it wasn’t the Jug that was presented. Back in 1860, the Challenge Belt was awarded to Willie Park Snr. 

• The Open venue in 2023

Fast forward 12 years, and the Claret Jug had been built. However, it wasn’t ready to be presented to the champion that year, Young Tom Morris. Although his name is the first to be engraved on the Jug, it was the 1873 champion, Tom Kidd, who was the first to be presented with the trophy. 

Back then, the real Claret Jug went home with the Champion Golfer of the Year, until Walter Hagen won in 1928, when he was given a replica of the Jug. That tradition is still followed to this day.

• St Andrews Open merch

Want to know if you’re looking at the real Claret Jug? Look back to the year 1947, and a slight spelling mistake. Fred Daly won that year, at Hoylake. But, the engraver made a mistake, and engraved the venue as Holylake. A small error, and a good tale to look back on.

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