Rory McIlroy has been awarded the Golf Writers Trophy for 2012.
The Northern Irishman, 23, became the sport's undisputed world No 1 during a spectacular season which saw him win the USPGA Championship - his second major - by eight shots.
He also won four other tournaments and emulated Luke Donald by topping the money lists on both sides of the Atlantic.
The Ryder Cup side - of which McIlroy was part - came second in the voting, followed by Ian Poulter, 53-year-old Roger Chapman and the Great Britain and Ireland Curtis Cup team.
McIlroy, named last week as the PGA Tour's Player of the Year, said: "The 2012 season was a superb one for every aspect of European golf and that comes across when you look at the names of the players in contention for the Golf Writers Trophy this year - therefore to come out on top of that list is a great honour."
Poulter was one of the stars of the Chicago comeback, making five birdies in a row to win a vital fourball match alongside McIlroy and finishing the event with four points out of four.
Chapman enjoyed a stunning season when he won the Senior PGA Championship and the US Senior Open, a double only previously achieved by Gary Player, Jack Nicklaus and Hale Irwin.
The Curtis Cup victory at Nairn completed an unprecedented clean sweep of all four of the main trans-Atlantic trophies - Ryder, Solheim, Walker and Curtis Cups.