Our Rules vs the USGA
For you new guys (and you forgetful veterans) we have some special rules we use in an attempt to keep the pace of play moving along.
2 Points per Hole: Each hole is worth 2 points and there are no carry overs. Low net score on the hole takes the 2 points. A tied hole results in 1 point per player.
Double Par Rule: Once you reach double the par for the hole, pick up your ball you are done! There are some intricacies to the double par rule. First, if you reach double par you cannot win the hole. The best you can do is split the hole.
Example #1: Hole #1 is a Par 4. If your opponent hits a couple in the water, eventually gets up the green but is lying 8 on the green, they pick up and take an 8. Meanwhile you 3 putt for a 6, you get 2 points (but you own $0.50). If your opponent picks up, you do not automatically win the hole. You must finish out.
Example #2: Hole #4, the long Par 4. You and your opponent both go out of bounds right off the tee. You both re-tee, and lie 3 in the fairway. You hook your next shot into the water and have to take a drop, you now lie 5 and are hitting 6. Your next shot comes up short, and you chip onto the greet, you now lie 7. You miss your putt for an 8, so you pick up and take an 8 on the hole. Meanwhile, your opponent chunks his 4th shot, and hits his next one into a greenside bunker. He lies 5 in the bunker, but it takes him 2 shots to get out. He now lies 7 on the green. Somehow, he hits the 25 foot double breaker for a natural 8. He wins the hole as he was in for 8 and your 8th shot did not go in. You must put an * on the card next to your 8 on the card to denote it was the result of a pick up (8*).
Example #3: you both suck, you both pick up, you both get 1 point. You both put 8* on the card.
Example #4: What if you both suck and you both pick up but you were getting a stroke on the hole? Too bad, you still split the hole with 1 point each. Use your strokes wisely. If, however, you both get a natural 8 and you are getting a stroke on the hole you would win the hole.
3 Putt Penalty: 3 Putts were down last year due to the double par rule, but if you 3 putt a hole you owe $0.50. There is a container in the black bag on the 9th hole to accept your payments.
First Group/Last Group Responsibilities: First group: takes the closest to the pin box to the appropriate hole (and then leaves it). Even if no one in your group hits the green, you still have to drop it off 🙂 Last group: Make sure the black bag is brought to the 9th hole tree before you tee off on #1. Pick up the closest to the pin box (and tape measure) and bring it to TJ’s (It’s bright yellow, you cannot miss it). Also bring the black bag from the 9th hole to TJ’s.
That’s it for the Unique Rules, everything else is by the book. If you need a reminder on Red, Yellow, and White Stakes read on.
A friendly reminder on what the colored stakes mean.
What are your options?
- You may play the ball as it lay with no penalty. However, you may not move impediments such as sticks, leaves, rocks, etc. You also cannot ground the club (like in a sand trap your club head may not touch the ground before you begin your backswing).
- Your second option is to “take a drop” and move the ball with a one stroke penalty. You may move the ball back as far as you want along the path the ball was travelling when it entered the hazard.
- Your third option is to re-hit from your previous location again with a one stroke penalty.
Red Stakes Only
For Red Stakes only, there are additional options in addition to the 3 mentioned above. A fourth option for Red Stakes is to “take a drop” within 2 club lengths from where the ball entered the Hazard as long as it is no closer to the hole, again with a one stroke penalty. Your final Red Stake option is to cross over to the opposite side of the hazard and take two club lengths no closer to the hole with a one stroke penalty.
White Stakes = Out-of-Bounds
Unlike hitting the ball in a hazard, you don’t have any options when it comes to hitting the ball out of bounds. If your ball comes to rest in out-of-bounds territory you must take a penalty stroke and then re-hit from the spot of your last shot. (ie. If your tee shot goes out of bounds, you must re-tee. If your second shot lands in-bounds you will be laying 3).
In an attempt to keep pace of play going, it is recommended you hit a “provisional” second shot if you think your shot may be lost or out of bounds. If your first shot is lost or out of bounds, the “provisional” ball is now in play and you must account for the penalty stroke. If your initial shot is found in-bounds, continue play with that ball with no penalty and pick up the “provisional.” You must announce you are “playing a provisional” before taking the shot.