Yeah, I don't think that finding out after the tournament that you were competing against the other division was really the issue. Unless, of course, you were within a shot or two of the leader and knew it, and would have played the hole differently had you known that.
The only real issue is the unfortunate lack of turnout for your section.
I always like to look at the bright side, so I would look more at the fact that you held your own with the guys from the better division. You didn't beat them, but you at least showed that you "belong" with them and can compete at that level ... which is good because I imagine you aren't too far from being able to play in that division.
That is the reason so many guys wait until the last minute, some often entering after the deadline (our tour director allows it) so they can see how many and who.
A couple of messages previous have mentioned $175 to join, it's actually $199 for your first year and then $175 in subsequent years.
The merchandise isn't impressive either, although the Antiqua golf shirts are pretty nice and they've made me re-think my Under-Armour only policy.
The more popular Major Tournaments fill up really fast, but for what they charge, I feel like it's worth it. For example, I played at The Homestead last year for $395, got another nice golf shirt, didn't win anything, but I got two rounds on a couple of fairly upscale golf courses.
Regular tournaments as someone has stated, run anywhere from $100 to as high as $150. We don't see many over $115 here in the Carolinas.
We have about 2 tournaments a month within 2 hours of me and I could probably play 3 a month during the summer if I was really to drive farther.
Sandbaggers don't last long...they are moved up due to handicaps in their tournament rounds. Sucks to have them kick your butt until they get 4 tournament rounds in, but it is pretty well regulated.
Cheaters?????? There everywhere and I've had the misfortune to run into a couple of them, but the tour director assures me and I believe him, that the odds of anyone persons experiencing what I experienced twice in a season is pretty low.
I'm going to send in my $175 this year and give it another shot.