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Solving Slow Play: A New Pace of Play Program You can Support in 2013 - Page 4

post #55 of 162
Quote:
Originally Posted by RayG View Post

If someone wanted to go back and re-tee from my group, I would have no problems if they want to 'rule it up'. I would, however tell them to hurry up, because we won't be stopping and waiting for you to go all the way back and hit another. AND you will walk back because I'm keeping the cart. AND when the people on the tee scream and yell at you to get the f*ck out of the way, they're trying to tee off, and you try and explain "stroke and distance", I'm not responsible for their actions. So, if you want to go through that, by all means- enjoy yourself.
I played a few tournaments in a money type league that would take over a course for the morning or the day, one of the first "Local Rules" listed on the sheet was that there was no "Stoke and Distance" penalties for OB. You took a drop nearest to where you believed it crossed the line or did cross and you played your 4th shot from there. so it was a two stroke penalty that saved time for everybody. Granted there were some issues on where somebody ELSE thought it might have gone out, but for the most part people worked it out.
Of course, that could all be avoided by hitting a provisional, but people often seem to forget about it. I learned that lesson the hard way.
post #56 of 162

I played the most enjoyable round of golf last Sunday.  There was a group of 4 walkers in front of our group, and one behind us.  The pace of all three groups was so similar that we never had to wait on the group in front of us, and the group behind us never had to wait on us throughout the entire round.  I know it sounds impossible, but all 3 groups kept perfect spacing through the entire round.

 

Never seen it before, but it was awesome and the pace of play was amazing.

post #57 of 162

I take issue with those who think slow play is the fault of newbies or high handicappers.  I walked 18 last week on a crowded muni course with my 12 year old, my 9 year old and my 8 year old.  We finished in 4:12, and we had to wait several times to tee off when the group in front of us hadn't cleared.  First, my two youngest can't hit more than 75 yards so they could take their tee shots and several mulligans from the forward tees while the guys in front of us were still too close for me to hit.  Then, after I hit, I made them pick up all of their balls and drop by mine so it was something of a modified scramble but I never made the next group suffer while one of my kids took 7 shots to 400 yards.

 

Similarly, when I was first learning to play I ALWAYS picked up my ball if I was slowing things down.  If you are going to shoot a 135 round, who gives a **** if you pick up the ball?!  I'd also go out with guys who knew how to play and I'd bring a ton of extra balls and just abandon those that went way off the fairway instead of spending 5 minutes looking for my crappy slice or snap hook .  When you're still at the stage of "one good shot per round" or even "one good shot per hole" you really shouldn't be worrying about your gross score just yet in my humble opinion.

 

I guess that's a long way of saying it still comes down to the common sense, etiquette and awareness of the player, and even a really poor golfer can keep things moving if they respect the others on the course and the game.  

post #58 of 162

If courses want to address slow play, they can. But it has to start with policy, not players.

 -- 

post #59 of 162
Quote:
Originally Posted by Stretch View Post

If courses want to address slow play, they can. But it has to start with policy, not players.

 -- 

 

Except for the green - yellow - red flag system (an idea I like, by the way), this is pretty much how my home course has worked it for the last 20 years.  We are much like the course in the article as far as player load, and we have always kept place to a similar rate, at least 75% to 4½ hours or less.  I feel that our first tee hosts could have been a bit better trained, in keeping with giving consistent information as to course policies for pace of play and general course etiquette, but they did get players off on time, and that can be an important key to keeping the flow moving on the course.  The starter has always been the one to record the turn and finish times for each group, but the ranger also focuses primarily on the front 9, because most pace of play problems begin there.  If the pace breaks down on the front 9, trying to fix it on the back 9 is a hopeless task.  The starter and rangers and professional staff have always employed Nextel radios so that they are in instant communication with each other.

 

The course has now changed its first tee arrangement due to financial constraints, moving the starter from a booth attached to the pro shop to a shack right at the first tee.  That way they eliminated the tee host position without giving up the ability to send groups off on time with necessary information.  I was forced to give up my position as starter at the end of the year before they implemented the change, and since I'm living out of the country, I haven't had a chance to play or even to talk to anyone to find out how well the new system worked.  

 

The one question I would ask the author is what tee intervals the course employs.  That is still a crucial factor in keeping a reasonable pace of play.  The course in question clearly had a major issue with pace of play - rounds averaging 5 to 6 hours is crazy.  My home course goes in to a panic when a day starts to approach 5 hours.  As starter, I would even block out an open tee time to try to create some space on the course on a day when a major problem had developed.  That isn't a good option though, since it naturally reduces potential revenues from walk-on players.  Much better to address the specific cause of a slowdown as quickly as it develops.

post #60 of 162

why is telling slow groups to pick up and move ahead 2 holes not an option?  wouldnt this add a sense of immediacy to the slow play policy?  if a group slowing the course down has to lose out on 2 holes, i would think they would hurry the eff up for the rest of the round.

post #61 of 162
Quote:
Originally Posted by colin007 View Post

why is telling slow groups to pick up and move ahead 2 holes not an option?  wouldnt this add a sense of immediacy to the slow play policy?  if a group slowing the course down has to lose out on 2 holes, i would think they would hurry the eff up for the rest of the round.

 

If a course allows a group to get 2 holes behind, they aren't doing the job in the first place.  That is way too big a gap to allow.  If that happens, then what do you tell the group behind them?  Do they have to pick up and skip 2 holes too when all they have done is wait on the slow group?  And the group behind them, etcetera, etcetera?  All you have done is allow the creation of a cascade effect which just makes everyone unhappy.  

post #62 of 162

I will admit that I did not read all of the thread.  But again with the slow play!?!?!?!?!

 

We lengthen courese to over 7,000 yards because Johnny Duffer thinks he is the second coming of Bubba and we are shocked that it takes a while to play.

post #63 of 162

Actually of the courses i have played on, only maybe a quarter of them approach 7000 yards, and majority of the time, most people who are bad at golf don't play that distance. 

post #64 of 162

i dont know if there are any (public) courses around me that have 7000 yard tees.

post #65 of 162
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fourputt View Post

The one question I would ask the author is what tee intervals the course employs.

 

I'm a regular at that course (Ancil Hoffman). It's still 8 minutes, which is the same as it was before the program was put into effect.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fourputt View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by colin007 View Post

why is telling slow groups to pick up and move ahead 2 holes not an option?  wouldnt this add a sense of immediacy to the slow play policy?  if a group slowing the course down has to lose out on 2 holes, i would think they would hurry the eff up for the rest of the round.

 

If a course allows a group to get 2 holes behind, they aren't doing the job in the first place.  That is way too big a gap to allow.  If that happens, then what do you tell the group behind them?  Do they have to pick up and skip 2 holes too when all they have done is wait on the slow group?  And the group behind them, etcetera, etcetera?  All you have done is allow the creation of a cascade effect which just makes everyone unhappy.  

 

I dunno, seems like a good solution to me. Assuming the group that's following the slow group is not as slow, they (and the groups behind them) will inevitably close the gap that has been created by forcing the group ahead to skip. If the group that had been following *is* as slow as the group in front, that would be apparent if the 2 hole gap doesn't start decreasing once a reasonable amount of time has passed - and then they'll be told to skip as well. 

post #66 of 162
Has anyone considered that starting groups at 10 or sometimes 8 minute intervals may create slower play. If you expect a round, 18 holes to be finished in 4 hours the start interval should be 13 minutes. Think of a freeway with too many cars on it. I understand that there are some people or groups that are way too slow, but often I wonder if groups are started to close together. Sometimes i'll start early and just go around twice on the back 9.
post #67 of 162
Quote:
Originally Posted by Smitty View Post

Has anyone considered that starting groups at 10 or sometimes 8 minute intervals may create slower play. If you expect a round, 18 holes to be finished in 4 hours the start interval should be 13 minutes. Think of a freeway with too many cars on it. I understand that there are some people or groups that are way too slow, but often I wonder if groups are started to close together. Sometimes i'll start early and just go around twice on the back 9.

Lol, yes, we have all thought of that. Unfortunately the courses aren't going to schedule 13 min tee-times instead of 6 minute tee-times and lose out on 50% of the revenue they could otherwise generate. I only wish it was that easy.
post #68 of 162
Quote:
Originally Posted by colin007 View Post

i dont know if there are any (public) courses around me that have 7000 yard tees.

The course I played today is public and 5 minutes from my house. The course measures 7,620 yards from the tips. Although, you would have to be sadistic to play the course from the back tees.
post #69 of 162
Quote:
Originally Posted by MyrtleBeachGolf View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by Smitty View Post

Has anyone considered that starting groups at 10 or sometimes 8 minute intervals may create slower play. If you expect a round, 18 holes to be finished in 4 hours the start interval should be 13 minutes. Think of a freeway with too many cars on it. I understand that there are some people or groups that are way too slow, but often I wonder if groups are started to close together. Sometimes i'll start early and just go around twice on the back 9.

Lol, yes, we have all thought of that. Unfortunately the courses aren't going to schedule 13 min tee-times instead of 6 minute tee-times and lose out on 50% of the revenue they could otherwise generate. I only wish it was that easy.

 

6 minutes????  That's nuts.  There is no way that you can send golfers out on a 6 minute interval - your backup would start on the first tee.  But 13 minutes is foolish too.  There is nothing wrong with having 2 groups at a time on all except the par 3 holes.  8 minutes is too short for anything except perfect golf, 10 minutes is usually sufficient for a good pace, and 9 minutes is an acceptable compromise between overloading the course and still maintaining a decent revenue base.  The actual number can vary somewhat from course to course.  An easy, wide open course may be able to get away with 8 minute intervals if there is little reason to worry about lost balls, etc.  On a more difficult course, the interval may need to be staggered at 8 and 9 or 9 and 10, or even extended to a full 10 minutes simply to allow players to play the course.  

 

This is the downside to building municipal or district courses in the style of upscale resort or championship courses - they are going to be played heavily, and often by inexperienced players, and they just can't be crammed as full as a more open, parkland layout without bogging down the pace of play.  They will usually be overcrowded because the overseeing entity is some form of government agency, and they will be trying to maximize revenue by simply cramming as many players as possible onto the course.

 

 


Quote:
Originally Posted by sacm3bill View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fourputt View Post

The one question I would ask the author is what tee intervals the course employs.

 

I'm a regular at that course (Ancil Hoffman). It's still 8 minutes, which is the same as it was before the program was put into effect.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fourputt View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by colin007 View Post

why is telling slow groups to pick up and move ahead 2 holes not an option?  wouldnt this add a sense of immediacy to the slow play policy?  if a group slowing the course down has to lose out on 2 holes, i would think they would hurry the eff up for the rest of the round.

 

If a course allows a group to get 2 holes behind, they aren't doing the job in the first place.  That is way too big a gap to allow.  If that happens, then what do you tell the group behind them?  Do they have to pick up and skip 2 holes too when all they have done is wait on the slow group?  And the group behind them, etcetera, etcetera?  All you have done is allow the creation of a cascade effect which just makes everyone unhappy.  

 

I dunno, seems like a good solution to me. Assuming the group that's following the slow group is not as slow, they (and the groups behind them) will inevitably close the gap that has been created by forcing the group ahead to skip. If the group that had been following *is* as slow as the group in front, that would be apparent if the 2 hole gap doesn't start decreasing once a reasonable amount of time has passed - and then they'll be told to skip as well. 

 

 

Except that by being inattentive to that slow group and allowing them to open a 2 hole gap, you have essentially now punished the players stuck behind them even more, putting the burden on them to close the gap by playing faster than normal.  If the course in front of the slow group is playing at what is considered the normal pace for the course, then closing a 2 hole gap is going to demand abnormal speed from everyone behind the jam.  And if the group skipping ahead is already well into the back 9, then you have a problem which isn't going to resolve itself just by skipping one group ahead.  If the problem occurs early on the front 9, then it may still take an hour for the flow to normalize, but if it's on the back 9, the course is going to be jacked up  for most of the remainder of the day.  

 

I know from experience both as a player and as a starter that it's nearly impossible on the back 9 to recover a two hole gap without a special effort from at least the next 10 or a dozen groups.  The odds of being able to depend on that many groups all playing at an exceptional pace is slim.  You are more likely to have an accordion like domino effect for as long as the course is full that day.   It won't be as bad as if nothing had been done, but it's going to be very hard to fully recover. The real solution is still to have the tools in place so that you never allow such a gap to develop in the first place.


Edited by Fourputt - 1/11/13 at 3:10pm
post #70 of 162
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fourputt View Post


Quote:
Originally Posted by sacm3bill View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fourputt View Post

The one question I would ask the author is what tee intervals the course employs.

 

I'm a regular at that course (Ancil Hoffman). It's still 8 minutes, which is the same as it was before the program was put into effect.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fourputt View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by colin007 View Post

why is telling slow groups to pick up and move ahead 2 holes not an option?  wouldnt this add a sense of immediacy to the slow play policy?  if a group slowing the course down has to lose out on 2 holes, i would think they would hurry the eff up for the rest of the round.

 

If a course allows a group to get 2 holes behind, they aren't doing the job in the first place.  That is way too big a gap to allow.  If that happens, then what do you tell the group behind them?  Do they have to pick up and skip 2 holes too when all they have done is wait on the slow group?  And the group behind them, etcetera, etcetera?  All you have done is allow the creation of a cascade effect which just makes everyone unhappy.  

 

I dunno, seems like a good solution to me. Assuming the group that's following the slow group is not as slow, they (and the groups behind them) will inevitably close the gap that has been created by forcing the group ahead to skip. If the group that had been following *is* as slow as the group in front, that would be apparent if the 2 hole gap doesn't start decreasing once a reasonable amount of time has passed - and then they'll be told to skip as well. 

 

 

Except that by being inattentive to that slow group and allowing them to open a 2 hole gap, you have essentially now punished the players stuck behind them even more, putting the burden on them to close the gap by playing faster than normal.  If the course in front of the slow group is playing at what is considered the normal pace for the course, then closing a 2 hole gap is going to demand abnormal speed from everyone behind the jam.  And if the group skipping ahead is already well into the back 9, then you have a problem which isn't going to resolve itself just by skipping one group ahead.  If the problem occurs early on the front 9, then it may still take an hour for the flow to normalize, but if it's on the back 9, the course is going to be jacked up  for most of the remainder of the day.  

 

I know from experience both as a player and as a starter that it's nearly impossible on the back 9 to recover a two hole gap without a special effort from at least the next 10 or a dozen groups.  The odds of being able to depend on that many groups all playing at an exceptional pace is slim.  You are more likely to have an accordion like domino effect for as long as the course is full that day.   It won't be as bad as if nothing had been done, but it's going to be very hard to fully recover. The real solution is still to have the tools in place so that you never allow such a gap to develop in the first place.

 

All I know is, if I'm behind a slow group that group is forced to skip ahead, I can now play faster than I was playing before, and I'm happy. I doubt I'm in the minority on that. So yes, obviously the ideal solution is to prevent a 2 hole gap from ever happening. But if it has happened, I don't see any down side to making the slow group skip a hole or two.

post #71 of 162
Quote:
Originally Posted by MyrtleBeachGolf View Post


The course I played today is public and 5 minutes from my house. The course measures 7,620 yards from the tips. Although, you would have to be sadistic to play the course from the back tees.


You must have been playing Grande Dunes.  I played out there with Major League pitcher Scott Erickson who was playing from the back tees, and they were waaaay back there.  But he didn't hit a drive less than 300 yards all day.

post #72 of 162

 I'm sending the 240 GOLF link to my pro. We need to do something to educate a number of golfers around here. This can only help. You don't have to tell anyone they are slow. They never believe it anyway. This program gives golfers the information they need to improve pace without accusing anyone of being slow.

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