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New Worldwide Handicap System

  • 20-02-2018 3:32pm
    #1
    Closed Accounts Posts: 3,378 ✭✭✭ HighLine


    Just seen this announced today. Fairly surprised to see it coming into force by 2020. Practice rounds should never be counted for handicap purposes in my opinion.

    https://www.golfnet.ie/news/golfnet/2903/world-handicap-system-features-announced
    JOINT STATEMENT ON WORLD HANDICAP SYSTEM BY IRISH LADIES GOLF UNION & GOLFING UNION OF IRELAND

    Sinead Heraty (CEO, ILGU): “A standard system of handicapping worldwide is a welcome development for the sport. The new system will make it easier to obtain and retain a handicap and will be easier to understand for all golfers.”

    “The introduction of flexible formats to count for handicap purposes will also ensure that the game continues to become more inclusive and recognises more modern formats of the game which in turn will encourage more players into club membership.”

    Pat Finn (CEO, GUI): "We welcome the announcement today in relation to the World Handicap System and we look forward to engaging and consulting with our affiliated golf clubs prior to adoption."


    Features of the World Handicap System

    The new system will feature the following:

    Flexibility in formats of play, allowing both competitive and recreational rounds to count for handicap purposes and ensuring a golfer’s handicap is more reflective of potential ability

    A recommendation that the number of scores needed to obtain a new handicap be 54 holes from any combination of 18-hole and 9-hole rounds, but with some discretion available for handicapping authorities or National Associations to set a different minimum within their own jurisdiction

    A consistent handicap that is portable from course to course and country to country through worldwide use of the USGA Course and Slope Rating System, already successfully used in more than 80 countries

    An average-based calculation of a handicap, taken from the best eight out of the last 20 scores and factoring in memory of previous demonstrated ability for better responsiveness and control

    A calculation that considers the impact that abnormal course and weather conditions might have on a player’s performance each day
    Daily handicap revisions, taking account of the course and weather conditions calculation

    A limit of Net Double Bogey on the maximum hole score (for handicapping purposes only)

    A maximum handicap limit of 54.0, regardless of gender, to encourage more golfers to measure and track their performance to increase their enjoyment of the game

    Worldwide stakeholder engagement

    Quantitative research was conducted in 15 countries around the world, through which 76 percent of the 52,000 respondents voiced their support for a World Handicap System, 22 percent were willing to consider its benefits, and only 2 percent were opposed. This was followed by a series of focus groups, in which more than 300 golf administrators and golfers from different regions around the world offered extensive feedback on the features of the proposed new system.

    This feedback has helped shape the WHS, which has been developed by The R&A and the USGA with support from each handicapping authority as well as the Japan Golf Association and Golf Canada.

    A modern and more accessible sport

    Martin Slumbers, Chief Executive of The R&A, said, “We are working with our partners and National Associations to make golf more modern, more accessible and more enjoyable as a sport and the new World Handicap System represents a huge opportunity in this regard.

    “We want to make it more attractive to golfers to obtain a handicap and strip away some of the complexity and variation which can be off-putting for newcomers. Having a handicap, which is easier to understand and is truly portable around the world, can make golf much more enjoyable and is one of the unique selling points of our sport.”

    Mike Davis, CEO of the USGA, commented, “For some time, we’ve heard golfers say ‘I’m not good enough to have a handicap,” or ‘I don’t play enough to have a handicap.’ We want to make the right decisions now to encourage a more welcoming and social game. We’re excited to be taking another important step – along with modernising Golf’s Rules – to provide a pathway into the sport, making golf easier to understand and more approachable and enjoyable for everyone to play.”

    Objectives of golf’s World Handicap System

    The tenets of the new system focus on three main objectives: to encourage as many golfers as possible to obtain and maintain a handicap; to enable golfers of differing abilities, genders and nationalities to transport their handicap to any course globally and compete on a fair and equitable basis; and to indicate with sufficient accuracy the score a golfer is reasonably capable of achieving on any course around the world, playing under normal conditions.

    Given worldwide alignment towards a single system, all parties will now embark on a two-year transition period targeting implementation in 2020. When adopted, the World Handicap System will be governed by The R&A and the USGA and administered locally by the six existing authorities and National Associations around the world, with safeguards included to ensure consistency as well as adaptability to differing golf cultures.

    The six handicapping authorities represent approximately 15 million golfers in 80 countries who currently maintain a golf handicap.

    Collaboration

    The announcement is the latest step in a multi-year collaboration between The R&A and the USGA, handicap authorities and national and regional golf associations around the world to introduce one set of Rules for handicapping, aimed to support modernising, growing and supporting accessibility of the sport.

    As an extension of their support of the Rules of Golf worldwide, Rolex has made a commitment to support The R&A’s and the USGA’s efforts to implement a World Handicap System. The Swiss watchmaker’s contribution to excellence in golf is based on a rich heritage stretching back more than 50 years, forged through pivotal partnerships at every level of the game, from the sport’s leading professional and amateur competitions and organisations, to players at the pinnacle of their sport worldwide.

    To provide feedback on the new World Handicap System or for more information, visit randa.org.


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Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,463 ✭✭✭ willabur


    handicaps up to 54 will lead to some very long rounds out there. While it might encourage people to get into the sport I think it'll annoy people out of the sport in a short amount of time.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 3,378 ✭✭✭ HighLine


    willabur wrote: »
    handicaps up to 54 will lead to some very long rounds out there. While it might encourage people to get into the sport I think it'll annoy people out of the sport in a short amount of time.

    The 54 handicap limit is already in place as of January this year. Agree with your points on it though.


  • Registered Users Posts: 417 ✭✭ martinkop


    It is set up for banditry of the highest order. Crazy stuff.

    Play 20 9 hole "practice" rounds, then have your targeted handicap for the big comps.
    I'm assuming the max 1 stroke back is gone with this, if based on previous scores


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,716 ✭✭✭ CalamariFritti


    Unless there is more to it I have to say this sounds like a bad joke. While it may ‘include’ some folks into golf I could see it pissing a lot more people off.

    Average of best 8 out of the last 20 (including casual rounds). That’s like what the USGA does.
    Just to remind everyone how well that works....

    The guy who won the pebble beach pro-am last week went from 6.6 to 12 in the space of two months last year.

    They can’t be fkn serious. It’s basically make up your own handicap.

    I dearly hope there is more to it. Because on face value it has the potential to ruin golf here.


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,551 ✭✭✭ dan_ep82


    The nett double bogey part, does this mean an 8 on index one par4 still gets a point for 1HC golfer?

    I don't see bandit problems but more less skilled lower handicaps.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 417 ✭✭ martinkop


    Looking on R&A website, looks like national associations can decide whether or not to include casual rounds. I'd assume the GUI will stay as is in that case, this part of the WHS is for the US only.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 3,378 ✭✭✭ HighLine


    martinkop wrote: »
    Looking on R&A website, looks like national associations can decide whether or not to include casual rounds. I'd assume the GUI will stay as is in that case, this part of the WHS is for the US only.

    That statement I quoted above issued by the GUI specifically mentions "recreational rounds" to count towards handicap purposes.


  • Registered Users Posts: 417 ✭✭ martinkop


    HighLine wrote: »
    That statement I quoted above issued by the GUI specifically mentions "recreational rounds" to count towards handicap purposes.

    Right you are, thanks. That's not good, hopefully enough clubs will push back against it.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,645 ✭✭✭ Webbs


    It could also have a real impact on the amount of work and responsibility of handicap committees if the following has to be looked at by committees, its hard enough for clubs to fill these positions already.

    'An average-based calculation of a handicap, taken from the best eight out of the last 20 scores and factoring in memory of previous demonstrated ability for better responsiveness and control

    A calculation that considers the impact that abnormal course and weather conditions might have on a player’s performance each day
    Daily handicap revisions, taking account of the course and weather conditions calculation'

    If competition and casual rounds are taken into account and your an honest golfer who wants to get cut then having to do these calculations before your next competition will be a nightmare


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 3,378 ✭✭✭ HighLine


    martinkop wrote: »
    Right you are, thanks. That's not good, hopefully enough clubs will push back against it.

    Agree. It's a farcical system.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 423 ✭✭ ROS123


    It mentions casual rounds a lot, does one still have to be a member of a club to get an official handicap. Can society members get an official handicap?


  • Registered Users Posts: 255 ✭✭ doublecross


    This will kill revenue for golf clubs. If casual golf is counting then a lot of people just won't bother playing competitions.


  • Registered Users Posts: 5,167 ✭✭✭ slingerz


    This has been totally confused.

    Is my current handicap now going to change as a result of slope of my home course compared to other courses? How will that work for interclub competitions?


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,551 ✭✭✭ dan_ep82


    No more info until Jan 2019 going by the FAQ.

    Handicaps may change under the new system.

    They really should have had all the info available with the announcement.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,092 backspin.


    martinkop wrote: »
    Looking on R&A website, looks like national associations can decide whether or not to include casual rounds. I'd assume the GUI will stay as is in that case, this part of the WHS is for the US only.

    I would be very very surprised if the GUI allowed casual rounds to count towards handicaps. They are fighting a losing battle already against handicap builders. Including casual rounds would be a complete farce.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 3,378 ✭✭✭ HighLine


    backspin. wrote: »
    I would be very very surprised if the GUI allowed casual rounds to count towards handicaps. They are fighting a losing battle already against handicap builders. Including casual rounds would be a complete farce.

    See below
    JOINT STATEMENT ON WORLD HANDICAP SYSTEM BY IRISH LADIES GOLF UNION & GOLFING UNION OF IRELAND

    .......

    Flexibility in formats of play, allowing both competitive and recreational rounds to count for handicap purposes and ensuring a golfer’s handicap is more reflective of potential ability


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,092 backspin.


    This will kill revenue for golf clubs. If casual golf is counting then a lot of people just won't bother playing competitions.

    The only reason i play the game is for competitions. Sweeps, Classics, Matchplay, Medals etc. If they allow the handicap system to be ruined by casual golf handicap building i could see myself giving the game up.

    We take the game seriously in this country i'd hate to see us go down the route of 'mulligan' type american golf.


  • Registered Users Posts: 820 ✭✭✭ paulos53


    Unlimited casual games counting towards handicap adjustments is already in since January 1st

    Supplementary scores are not new but I think the old limit was 10 rounds a year.


  • Registered Users Posts: 62 ✭✭✭ jamok


    With the introduction of casual rounds being counted, Does this mean that the present Non Qualifying winter golf would be eligible for handicap reduction/increase. Nuts and Bolts obviously haven't been worked out yet. Not sure why they have gone public with it.


  • Registered Users Posts: 6,841 ✭✭✭ fred funk }{


    jamok wrote: »
    With the introduction of casual rounds being counted, Does this mean that the present Non Qualifying winter golf would be eligible for handicap reduction/increase. Nuts and Bolts obviously haven't been worked out yet. Not sure why they have gone public with it.

    I'd imagine not as winter rules are in place.


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  • Closed Accounts Posts: 3,378 ✭✭✭ HighLine


    paulos53 wrote: »
    Unlimited casual games counting towards handicap adjustments is already in since January 1st

    Supplementary scores are not new but I think the old limit was 10 rounds a year.

    That's not true.


  • Registered Users Posts: 820 ✭✭✭ paulos53


    HighLine wrote: »
    That's not true.

    Which part?


  • Registered Users Posts: 14,150 ✭✭✭✭ LuckyGent88


    Agree with a lot of the posts already in here. The scores from practice rounds is a load of bollix really, will lead to more handicap building, serious confusion for handicap committees and more work for already overworked handicap secretaries.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 3,378 ✭✭✭ HighLine


    paulos53 wrote: »
    Which part?

    This..
    paulos53 wrote: »
    Unlimited casual games counting towards handicap adjustments is already in since January 1st


  • Registered Users Posts: 65 ✭✭ Spider Rico


    Would the casual round need to be signed by a GUI member?

    Lots to iron out.

    One key draw to the game for me at the moment, is trying to compete to a standard that gets me cut, or avoid an increase. Whereas, this change seems to de-value the meaning of the handicap, with a casual 9 holes counting, it suits both handicap builders and those holding onto a trophy handicap.


  • Registered Users Posts: 12,308 ✭✭✭✭ prawnsambo


    Don't casual rounds make up your initial handicap allotment?


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 3,378 ✭✭✭ HighLine


    prawnsambo wrote: »
    Don't casual rounds make up your initial handicap allotment?

    This isn't about initial handicaps, it's about continuous handicap assessment and adjustments basked on casual rounds (as well as competitive) of golf like the American system.


  • Registered Users Posts: 5,564 ✭✭✭ Russman


    This is going to lead to a complete change of how we think of handicaps in this country, which I think will be the biggest obstacle. I know I’ve always thought of my handicap as a “thing” that was almost tangible in a sense, and, while not fixed, it could only change by fairly small but well defined increments. At first glance this new system seems to be the US system under a different guise and from my very limited knowledge of it, would mean your handicap is a sort of rolling average kind of number (best 8 out of last 20). I suppose the maths of it would mean it would take a lot for a significant change.
    Even the idea that you could be off 10 one day on one course and off 8 or 12 another day on a different course might make sense in theory, (ie not all courses are equal), it’s so different to the way we’ve all been conditioned.

    I guess the devil will be in the detail, but as others have mentioned hopefully we don’t end up with US style mulligan & non competition golf over here. I think our culture of weekend competitions is so vastly different from the US one, that one system can’t really work for all, can it ?

    Shame they haven’t all the mechanics of it ready yet. Some of the online debate I’ve seen varies from “it’ll be the end of Stableford” to “everything might as well be Stableford now” !!

    The race for Pierce Purcell eligibility might require spreadsheets in future :-) !!


  • Registered Users Posts: 12,308 ✭✭✭✭ prawnsambo


    HighLine wrote: »
    This isn't about initial handicaps, it's about continuous handicap assessment and adjustments basked on casual rounds (as well as competitive) of golf like the American system.
    Really? You think? :D

    In light of that, you might want to read my post again. It's quite short. ;)


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  • Registered Users Posts: 12,308 ✭✭✭✭ prawnsambo


    Russman wrote: »
    Even the idea that you could be off 10 one day on one course and off 8 or 12 another day on a different course might make sense in theory, (ie not all courses are equal), it’s so different to the way we’ve all been conditioned.
    This one is probably badly needed. I've been talking to golfers who's courses have shut down recently (in the last year or so) and pretty much all of them have been at least two or three shots off the pace at their new clubs. In a negative sense. Under the current system, unless they get an end of year adjustment (and that's not guaranteed), they could be a couple of years getting themselves and their handicaps to align.

    I know in my own club, we've had members in and out from other clubs and one I spoke to said they left because they just couldn't get competitive. It's a tough track alright and would be depressing coming in with points in the mid to high twenties all the time.

    And of course the opposite is also true.


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