All members are required to keep pace with the group in front of them during our tournaments!
To prevent falling behind.
- Help each other out. Pay attention to what the other people are doing and try to watch where their balls land. Really, try hard to do this. You'll be surprised how much this keeps your head in the game and improves your own game.
- If there is a chance a ball could be lost or out of bounds. Hit a provisional.
- When using a cart, drop off one player at their ball and the other player should drive to their ball and get ready. Take 3 clubs, one more and one less than the one you think you are going to use in case you change your mind.
- When searching for a ball, the search party should only be 3 players. One by one the other players should be heading to their own ball and hitting their approach shot, then rejoining the search party and rotating with another player. After the 3 players have hit, this should be approxamately 5 mins. which is the maximum allowed time under the USGA rules. At that point the ball should be deemed lost and the player should go hit their provisional. If you follow this method it should self time the 5 minutes and your group will not lose much ground on the group in front of you. Never join a search party if you don't know where your own ball is.
- Pace of play begins at HOLE 1. In fact it is almost the most important part of the round to keep pace as the city gets most upset when the tee times after tournaments get pushed back later and later. Too often I see a group lag for the first couple holes and then catch up. At that point, they have already destroyed the pace for the rest of the day. So please, don't be nervous about etiquette or playing with someone you don't know. Introduce yourselves on the first tee and discuss that everyone is aware they are playing ready golf.
- GPGC plays ready golf, not honors golf. Be at your ball and ready to hit as soon as it is your turn. That means all decisions, as much green reading possible, etc. is done prior to your turn.
- If you can take a shot without distracting another player, even if it isn't your turn. Go ahead and hit.
- Players riding in carts along with walking players can drive ahead and locate balls for everyone in the group.
- Conversations should be on the move and second in importance to playing the round. It is not impolite to put a conversation on hold and go to your ball and hit a shot.
- Practice becoming a faster player. Faster players are generally better players as they aren't overthinking shots. The golf swing is an athletic reaction the same as any other sport.
Your group is out of position, how do you catch up?
- When you are behind, proceed to the next tee and tee off while the other members in your group finish out.
- In extreme cases, you can even break the group into two twosomes and then try and re-pair once you've made up ground.
What will happen if your group falls out of position and finishes late?
- This is listed last because it's the last thing we want to do, but it's also the last defense we have against slow play. The majority of our club is aware of, in support of and has made great strides toward improving pace of play. Unfortunately a couple slow players in a tournament can spoil the pace of the entire field and due to the severity of the new city policy we need some consequences for slow play. If a group finishes their round more than 20 minutes after the group ahead of them AND over 5 hours from the time they teed off all members in that group will be assessed a two stroke penalty. Again, this is a last resort and I don't believe we'll need to do this if the previous 5 points are executed well.
- Tournament officials and players will report to the tournament chairman and commitee any instances they feel are deserving of a penalty.
- Players may request to speak before the board of directors at our monthly meetings if they feel they have a case against the penalty.