Sueing for lowering handicap
No idea if this article is legit but a golfer is suing for €10 after his handicap was dropped by 7.7 shots!
Is it April the 1st ?
Reply : Wed 22nd Feb 2012 16:58
As Chairman of Handicaps I was once told that if I didn't reinstate a golfer's original handicap, I'd cut him 2 shots, I'd be hearing from his Solicitor. I informed him of all the other evidence I had, including the away comps he'd figured in, and would he like me to suspend his handicap till the County Union could adjudicate... I didn't get the letter.
So yes, I can believe someone's daft enough to sue.
Reply : Wed 22nd Feb 2012 18:46
One minor point. It's €10m not €10!
Reply : Wed 22nd Feb 2012 22:31
It really makes me miss being a club member.
Now i dont get to spend time with total idiots like Thomas Talbot !!!!!!!
Reply : Wed 22nd Feb 2012 22:36
If you Google his name you'll see he's brought a number of stupid cases against various people and organisations. I guess once upon a time he'd be labelled a character...
Reply : Wed 22nd Feb 2012 22:39
Some might label him something else Brian.
Reply : Thu 23rd Feb 2012 08:50
Stephen, I do think that genuine golfers do want to see their handicap reducing but there are two extremes, the vanity handicap golfers who want to keep their handicap as low as possible and will not put cards in if they play above it and the bandits that want to win and who'll throw shots away so as not to be cut.
I played in a comp last week, 4 BBB stableford with the top two scores on each hole submitted. Our team put in a creditable 79 points. The winners....100 pts =equivalent of two of the players achieving a net birdie on all but one hole. Hard to believe.
ps second place was 92 pts and that looks totally suspect too but for some strange reason I had to laugh.
Reply : Thu 23rd Feb 2012 11:14
Not hard to believe, Patrick, we see this all the time in competitions of this nature.
This is the problem with the handicap system because, as you well, know there are many high handicappers who can really clout the ball and quite often have six/seven pars in a round, yet blow up on others and in thi kind of competition like 4 ball, better ball, it becomes a lottery.
Anyone who can shoot six pars is a 12 handicapper in my book.
Reply : Thu 23rd Feb 2012 13:14
Interesting theory JP. Personally, I thought the game of golf was to challenge yourself and always strive to be at your best vs the course/conditions. In my mind I always try to think of any doubles/triples as blips and not how I genuinely would play. I would rather finish last playing off 14 than win dubiously playing off 20-odd. Slow-playing bandits: true scourge of the game!
Reply : Thu 23rd Feb 2012 13:19
I think that sums it up John, also I note that the handicaps were not published. I was just happy to have a game on a good De Vere course for £20. Gets you thinking about statistics and possibilities though.
Reply : Thu 23rd Feb 2012 14:23
Patrick. Handicaps are fine when the competition is 18 holes of medal, stableford or bogey as an individual.
Problems arise in better ball comps especially something like the bowmaker you played in where the 2 best scores on each hole count. High handicappers shooting a lot of pars really help in this situation and if they combine well, then you see the kind of scores that you faced.
I still contend that handicaps should be very tight, like they used to be, making it difficult to play to ones handicap, thus removing these silly 43 point scenarios we keep on hearing about.
Even I, at 75, am quite capable of making no worse than a bogey on any course and that should be the cutoff for handicaps. This would make sure that players would have to concentrate more to play a respectable game.
I play with a 17 handicapper who really can hit a superb drive usually at least 260 yards and because of this length he does make a lot of pars in a round, sometimes even a birdie, yet by the time the round is finished he has struggled to play to his handicap. He would be unplayable in a 4 ball better ball situation.
Reply : Thu 23rd Feb 2012 15:50
On the issue of high handicaps; I'd would much prefer to see a new member/golfer be given an 18 handicap but that the h'cap committee monitor his performance closely. If he's struggling give him a lift. But at least this way you won't get someone joining, learning the game and applying the skills quicker than the h'cap system can cope and producing winning scores that would see others having to shoot course records just to draw.
In isolation it doesn't seem so bad when someone joins the club and "shoots the lights out" till the system catches up with them but memberships are so fluid these days it seems like there are several players doing this each year. Longstanding members, with established mid teens handicaps and down just can't compete with this sort of influx. We now see so many clubs with handicap divisions and three 1st prizes/2nd prizes etc instead of competitions with only one winner. Tweaking it so there are 3 divisions doesn't address the problem of handicaps that aren't actually representative of true playing ability.
Reply : Thu 23rd Feb 2012 17:24
"that the h'cap committee monitor his performance closely. If he's struggling give him a lift. But at least this way you won't get someone joining, learning the game and applying the skills quicker than the h'cap system can cope and producing winning scores that would see others having to shoot course records just to draw."
That is what a good handicap committee should be doing all the time with every player with a new handicap. The system is set up to allow for such adjustments - up or down.
Reply : Thu 23rd Feb 2012 17:37
"no worse than a bogey on any course and that should be the cutoff for handicaps."
The problem is that the average handicap is about 18. So about 50% of players will be penalised. The potential effect is that a high proportion of them will say 'I can't compete with only 18 strokes so I will leave my club and simply play pay&play where I don't need a handicap. Clubs are already losing players at about 3% a year, they can't afford to lose many more.
Reply : Thu 23rd Feb 2012 20:50
DH, so you think it is right that some players should recieve 2 shots on a hole. An absolute joke and you know it.
Reply : Thu 23rd Feb 2012 21:03
DH, and as Chairman of Handicaps that is what I did. The mechanism has always been there but some clubs don't even do an annual review let alone constant monitoring of new players. Crikey, I even took into account those that had been in hospital etc. "My" seniors continued playing a lot longer than in some clubs, and stayed members longer, because I tried to keep them competitive.
Reply : Sun 26th Feb 2012 11:50
hey John Pettitt,
I notice that according to Golfshake, you have not entered a score since September 10. have you stopped playing.
I am 24 handicap and get 2 strokes on 6 holes.
It evens me up a bit against the guys who play to 10 and play off 18.
That's the purpose of handicap.
I have broken a 100 twice in 35 games and so you think I should be an 18?
Reply : Sun 26th Feb 2012 15:02
Paul Fisher, please point me to the rule that states it is compulsory for me to enter my scores on Golfshake. I have always been a member of a club and satisfy the CONGU regulations.
Handicaps are not meant to even you up against other bandits. Your own words say that you hit the ball a very long way, so why on earth do you honestly think you should have 2 extra shots on six of the holes.
You cannot call Whispering Sands a golf club, it is only for exercise and to satisfy ex pats.
Reply : Mon 27th Feb 2012 20:02
for what it.s worth i don.t think a male should get more than 1 shot a hole in competion
Reply : Mon 27th Feb 2012 20:31
I agree with you, Alan, 2 shots on any hole makes a mockery of the game.
Reply : Mon 27th Feb 2012 20:39
I'm having my extra 2 at Minchinhampton in March unless of course I drop 2 shots from 20 in that time.
Fully behind the pointlessness of 2 shots on a Par 3 !
Reply : Mon 27th Feb 2012 23:17
That's what you think Darren. Half handicap for anyone from the Nottingham area
Reply : Tue 28th Feb 2012 03:22
So, the consensus of opinion is that there should be no handicaps above 18 for males and perhaps femailes as well. Or, if the females get say 24, then they should play off the men's tees.
Reply : Tue 28th Feb 2012 09:47
I don't think that is the consensus of opinion Paul, more the vocal few. There are some with very strong opinions on the matter and these are often low to mid handicap players who have been on the receiving end of a high handicapper carding 40+ points. I admit I have been that player with 40+ points
I think there are a few problems that lead to bandit scores: -
I don't particularly buy into only having one shot per hole. If we take out the cheats, the genuine 19-28 handicapper needs those extra shots to have a chance of shooting net par. I spent the first 18 months of my golfing journey aiming to shoot 95 on the par 69 course I was playing because I knew that score would win the round between myself and the other 27/28 handicappers I played with in my four-ball. We were consistent 27-30 over golfers at that time (see point 2 above) and if we only had 18 shots in a comp there is no way we would enter as we knew we had no chance of even being in the running. That's not to say we didn't aspire to get our handicaps down because we did, but at that time we just weren't good enough. This is one of the reasons the high handicap comps ran a few years ago as everyone was 25+ and was in the same boat. Shame they never continued.
I don't buy into the ¾ handicap that is often touted as being the solution either. Whenever you hear this demanded it alway comes from low handicappers. The reason for this is simple maths. ¾ of 8 is 6, ¾ of 24 is 18. The low handicapper off 8 loses 2 shots whist the higher handicapper off 24 loses 6. This means the low handicapper now effectively has a 4 shot advantage over the high handicapper. Whenever I hear calls for ¾ handicaps to stave off banditry I smile to myself because it almost always comes from a single figure handicapper and I think "but you're just trying to get playing handicaps tweaked to give yourself a better chance of winning, surely that is banditry too?". My playing handicap is currently 14, not ¾ of 14, so I should play off 14. I wish it were ¾ of 14 (goal for 2012 by the way)
Golf has changed over the years. ¾ handicaps in comps (⅞ in rare cases) was the norm and a 24 handicap max meant no-one ever got more than a shot a hole. Comps were usually strokeplay and were won by the better players because to win you had to play good golf all the way round. Comps are often now stableford off full handicaps of up to 28. This suits the inconsistent high handicapper better because one bad hole doesn't wreck your card in the way it would in a strokeplay round and the result is many of these comps are won by the 18+ handicapper. For me, I think strokeplay is the way golf should be played and still rewards good, consistent golf no matter the handicap. I think strokeplay rounds would also be won by low handicappers far more often than high. For me, a comp should be strokeplay off full (genuine) handicaps.
The rules are set by the R&A and USGA. Whether we like them or not is irrelevant, they are the rules. There are other rules in golf we would like changed (that's a whole different thread!) but we play within them. Unfortunately, handicap limits and the rules for how they are set and altered is not something we can change, no matter how much we would like them to be. If everyone had genuine handicaps then there wouldn't be an issue
Reply : Tue 28th Feb 2012 10:14
The inconsistent golfer - Most high handicappers are that because they cannot string together more than 2 or 3 good holes in a row. They are the sort that with a bit of time and practice will soon be off a lower handicap. Every now and again it clicks for them and they have 12 decent holes instead of 6 in a round, resulting in a good score and a cut. I was that golfer when I was off 20-25 handicap
This is me at the moment. Having only taken up the game 6 months ago I have been hitting around the 100 mark, but recently have occasionally managed to string some better holes together and have started to shoot lower, culminating in a best score 87 last weekend. I was only playing socially with friends, but frankly I'd have been embarrassed to have done that in even a casual "mates" competition format. With my handicap at 26 it would have meant almost guaranteed victory.
I consider the handicap to punish better players, how I can justify getting 2 shots on certain holes is absurd, expecting a 9 handicap golfer to score eagles on over half the holes, if I'm on a hot run is madness. I would agree that a minimum handicap of 18 in any form of competition would be fair.
I am very keen on getting my handicap as low as possible (and struggle to understand why you would not), and I feel that inputting in every card I play into this website is a fair way of me showing this, but I fully understand why people cannot be bothered to do this, especially if you are playing a lot.
Last edit : Tue 28th Feb 2012 10:17
Reply : Tue 28th Feb 2012 10:21
Chris and Matt,
Chris, what a well written response and a good synopsis of the situation.Thanks.
Matt, I am 24 and also struggle to get my handicap down and also I submit every card to golfshake. i recently got a 90 and was chopped two shots (rightly so) but according to some golfing biggots on here everyone should be a natural golfer.
I enjoy the game to play and really couldn't give a damn whether I win or not and it would not mean a great deal to me if they made the max handicap 18. It would probably give extra impetus to get to that genuine handicap but at 65 I think that time is running out. ha ha
Reply : Tue 28th Feb 2012 11:16
Chris always writes concisely and with good intention, but unfortunately he is still attempting to change the traditions of the game.
The reason the 3/4 rule was used is because it is far easier for the higher handicap to lower his score than it is for the low handicapper..
If you think time is running out at 65, Paul, then think of me at 75.
Reply : Tue 28th Feb 2012 17:26
I am a big believer in maintaining the traditions of the game John. I am but a lone voice and whilst I have my opinon it is likely to impact little on what happens to our sport.
Golf is in a very difficult position. It wishes to (quite rightly) maitain it's traditions but still needs to move with the times to continue to attract newcomers to the game. Not too long ago golf was perceived as a game played by stuffy old men with a superiority complex and while this was not always true (I'm well aware of your background) the perception stopped a new generation of golfers taking up the sport at a young age.
There is a fine balance to be struck by the sport to maintain the traditions on which it was built whilst still staying modern enough to appeal to the younger generation (the future of the sport). There will always be dissenters; the youth who wants to play to play in tracksuit bottoms and trainers and the old guard who believe you should only be allowed in the clubhouse if wearing a jacket and tie. Fortunately these are the extremes of the spectrum, but there will always be some who are unhappy with the state of the game.
Reply : Tue 28th Feb 2012 17:48
I look forward to meeting and possibly playing with someone who writes the way you do.
Most of the time you articulate how i feel but far better, apart from the fat finger incidents.
The traditions of this sport must remain the back bone, but just ''because thats how its always been done'' doesnt neccesarily mean that there might not be a better alternative to be looked at.
In this case i do favour the traditional 3/4 handicaps as there is no doubt that using the modern stapleford system it is easier for higher handicappers to score well against their handicap.
however, if stroke play is used i favour full handicaps because the system is penal enough for inconsistency or the odd terrible hole.
This for me proves that the traditional and the contemporary can sit side by side in our sport.
I often say that nobody should be able to get a double bogey for 2 points, but thats just because i have to think about where i get a shot at all let alone where i get 2.
For me it again comes back to the format being played, Stapleford with above 18 handicaps tilts the favour just to much towards the high handicappers.
Mind you i have seen many more comps won by mid ( 12-18) handicappers with huge points totals.
In my opinion a 22 handicapper is often much more genuine than given credit for.
Reply : Sun 11th Mar 2012 22:46
The reason the 3/4 allowance was changed to the now universal (all major golfing countries) full allowance was because figures produced by the EGU, SGU, USGA in thousands of matches showed that the lower handicap player would beat the higher handicapper in 62% of matches.
On full difference this is now 55% of matches.
The reason more high handicappers seem to win individual medals than cat 1 players is simply because there are infinitely more of them and the chances of one of them having his day in the sun is proprtionally greater.
Have a look at these links if anyone is interested
Last edit : Sun 11th Mar 2012 22:53