The way golfers around the world will calculate handicaps is to be transformed by a new system developed by the USGA and The R&A, designed to provide golfers with a consistent measure of playing ability.
The new World Handicap System, to be implemented in 2020, follows an extensive review of systems administered by six existing handicapping authorities.
Features of the new system:
- Flexibility in formats of play, allowing both competitive and recreational rounds to count for handicap purposes and ensuring that a golfer’s handicap is more reflective of otential ability
- A minimal number of scores needed to obtain a new handicap; a recommendation that the number of scores needed to obtain a new handicap be 54 holes from any ombination of 18-hole and 9-hole rounds.
- A consistent handicap that is portable from course to course and country to country.
- An average-based calculation of a handicap, taken from the best eight out of the last 20 scores and factoring in memory of demonstrated ability for better responsiveness and control.
- A calculation that considers the impact that abnormal course and weather conditions.
- Daily handicap revisions, taking account of the course and weather conditions calculation
- A limit of Net Double Bogey on the maximum hole scores (for handicapping purposes only).
- A maximum handicap limit of 54.0, regardless of gender. Mike Davis, CEO of the USGA (pictured), 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.” www.randa.org/News/2017/04/WorldHandicap-System-to-be-developed-for-golf