CALLUM TARREN may well feel like he possesses the talent to line up in a major, but the prospect of actually lining up in his first US Open is unlikely to sink in until the day when he tees up for the first round.

He may well spend the week building up to it by getting familiar with the famous Pebble Beach links, with the grandstands gradually filling up as the days go by, and yet first round day over in California on June 13 is likely to be when it really hits home.

Tarren, from Darlington, has made massive amounts of progress in recent years and his qualification for one of this year’s golfing showpiece events will mark another huge step in the right direction.

Tarren missed out 12 months ago by a single stroke, three putting the last, but he was like a man possessed at Streamsong Black on Monday when he opened up with a course record 64 and sealed his spot with a second round 68.

The goal long term is to make sure that this is not just a one-off, although the next time he actually does secure a place at one of the majors he will be hoping for a better way to celebrate than a run-in with the law he endured this week.

“It feels very surreal to know that I will be playing at the US Open, I don’t think it’s going to sink in until I arrive at Pebble Beach. I can’t wait, it’s going to be a fantastic experience playing in my first major,” said Tarren.

“It was certainly an interesting one after qualifying. Me and my caddy, Landon Ewing, had to drive to Greenville South Carolina for the event as it’s over two courses this week.

“We literally picked up the winners medal at Streamsong, Florida, packed the rental car up and drove nine hours through the night.

“We arrived at 5.15am on Tuesday morning, had two hours sleep and then played in the Pro-Am at one of the courses – and, of course, I got a speeding ticket passing through Georgia!”

Tarren, attached to Rockliffe Hall, has come along way since those early years when his friend’s’ father took him along to Dinsdale Spa, where he eventually became a member and a Durham county player.

He has always believed he had the talent to make it as a Tour professional but he feared it may never have materialised if he had stuck to the conventional route of playing on the EuroPro Tour and then the Challenge Tour.

That was why he ended up spending the last few years playing in China, establishing himself on that scene in the hope of eventually gaining a step towards the PGA Tour rather than his native European Tour scene.

The 28-year-old’s long haul trips, eating up his savings and hand outs from friends and family, eventually all seemed worthwhile when he graduated from the China Tour – a subsidiary of the premier PGA and European circuits – and won it.

He didn’t win an event in that first year in the Far East, but his consistent finishes saw him climb to eight in the Order of Merit to help his financial situation.

The next year he climbed five places to third in the Order of Merit and won his first title. And then last year he went into the final event of the season knowing a win would secure him his ticket to the US – and he did so.

His debut season has not started as impressively as he would have liked, but he has been steady away and then he shone in Florida at the start of the week to nail down his spot at Pebble Beach.

“This big event coming up this week in South Carolina is by all accounts one of the biggest and best events of the year on the schedule, so that will help my preparations for the US Open,” said Tarren, speaking from in Greenville, South Carolina.

“It will be focus and play well here. Travel Sunday night and get right into preparation starting Monday at Pebble. It feels great especially after the close call in 2018. Will be my first major and hopefully first of many.

“I believe it can be my first of many. I just want to keep improving and see where it takes me. I honestly believe I have what it takes to compete at the highest level. It’s all a learning process and just have to take each step as it comes. This is another new step and I’m relishing that step.”