Originally Posted by Fourputt
Try that policy on a course with a full reservation sheet from 5:30 AM until after noon, with starting time intervals of 8-9 minutes. And I wish you luck with it. Believe it or not, there are probably more golfers out here who can't ether afford or justify the expense of a private club than there are those who can. You private clubbers keep telling us how great it is, but if it's not a justifiable expense, then it's irrelevant. We are stuck on public courses, but that shouldn't mean that nothing can be done. If a course even started small, moving the time up 10 minutes. The once they achieve that, try for another ten, and so on until they reach a realistic optimum for the course and the player load. For a busy course that is pretty much never going to be under 4 hours.
It can't work, because aside from the first 4 or 5 groups in the morning, the rest of the players are not in control of their own destiny. Too many players would not be eligible for vouchers due to the slow play of other groups. No way they can afford offer a large enough reward to be a sufficient incentive to enough players to matter.
You are absolutely correct. It is very difficult to enforce pace of play at a public course as the pro shop there do not have the ability to penalize those who don't adhere to it.
You are also correct that this discussion should be limited to public courses as that is where the vast majority of golfers play.
So my $64,000 question is that if pace of play is something the majority of golfers are concern with, then why doesn't everyone try to do their part to solve it in their own groups. For instance here are some of the things that we do in my regular group -
- everyone going to their own ball (if you are ahead of the other then stand off to the side) instead of walking in one group to each person's ball and doing some of the pre-shot routine if you are not in the way or distracting them, this give you time to measure distance etc.
- have at least one person keeping an eye on the other players shot
- doing the majority of your putting routine while other are putting as long as you are not in their way or distracting them
- try to have each player putt out instead of marking and then waiting for the next person
- have the first person who putts out go to the next tee and get ready for their drive
- park your golf carts where you don't have to go back to retrieve
- only have one other person help look for lost balls, the other members will play their next shots with one keeping an eye on the other players shot
- the first person to hit the next shot can then come back to help look for the lost ball and allow the other person to hit his shot
- it there is any question of a lost ball or OB issue play the provision shot right away
I still think vouchers may still work but they would need it to be tailored to different pace of play expectations based on the time of day. If a course has an expected pace of play of 4:20 then maybe something like this -
- first hour 4:00
- second hour 4:10
- third hour 4:20
- fourth hour 4:30
- fifth hour and onwards 4:40
Maybe the truth of the "pace of play" issue is that the majority of golfers really don't care.