Originally Posted by MyrtleBeachGolf
Originally Posted by Smitty
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.
Originally Posted by sacm3bill
Originally Posted by Fourputt
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.
Originally Posted by Fourputt
Originally Posted by colin007
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