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Should divots be considered ground under repair? - Page 19

post #325 of 517
Did this discussion migrate from "sand/dirt and seed filled divot holes" to divot holes in general? I don't believe there was ever any difference on divot holes, but perhaps a difference on sand/dirt and seed filled divot holes?
post #326 of 517
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fourputt View Post
 

I just find it rather shocking that the two ruling bodies of the game would have such a diverse approach to such a fundamental part of the game.  They are supposed to have been together on the basic principles for the last 50+ years, yet in this case their responses are diametrically opposed.  Granted that they are now back in step since 2010, but this is just a disturbing development.  It makes one wonder how much other unpublicized permissiveness has been "allowed" in opposition to the foundations of the game.  

 

.

The USGA have said if the course is using preferred lies or markings that are not in accordance with the Rules of Golf those would not be considered when performing the course rating. The effect is, that handicaps are based on their being marked correctly. The USGA do not go back to check.

 

Incidentally, there have been no comments on the relationship between preferred lies and embedded ball through the green with play the ball as it lies.

 

Are they not fundamentally the same issue?

post #327 of 517
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rulesman View Post

The USGA have said if the course is using preferred lies or markings that are not in accordance with the Rules of Golf those would not be considered when performing the course rating. The effect is, that handicaps are based on their being marked correctly. The USGA do not go back to check.

Incidentally, there have been no comments on the relationship between preferred lies and embedded ball through the green with play the ball as it lies.

Are they not fundamentally the same issue?

I don't think so. Plugged in its own pitch mark is completely different than simply a little mud on the ball.....
post #328 of 517
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rulesman View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fourputt View Post
 

I just find it rather shocking that the two ruling bodies of the game would have such a diverse approach to such a fundamental part of the game.  They are supposed to have been together on the basic principles for the last 50+ years, yet in this case their responses are diametrically opposed.  Granted that they are now back in step since 2010, but this is just a disturbing development.  It makes one wonder how much other unpublicized permissiveness has been "allowed" in opposition to the foundations of the game.  

 

.

The USGA have said if the course is using preferred lies or markings that are not in accordance with the Rules of Golf those would not be considered when performing the course rating. The effect is, that handicaps are based on their being marked correctly. The USGA do not go back to check.

 

Incidentally, there have been no comments on the relationship between preferred lies and embedded ball through the green with play the ball as it lies.

 

Are they not fundamentally the same issue?

 

I confess to having problems with that one too.  I can't see any good reason for having one rule which tries to differentiate between fairway and rough.  If it's felt that the embedded ball deserves particular attention in the rules, then it should apply through the green at all times.  The rules do not recognize or define "fairway", yet they then write a rule which does recognize... 

 

Quote:
"Closely mown area" means any area of the course, including paths through the rough, cut to fairway height or less.

  

 

So the question to be asked is, according to the rules, what is a fairway, and how closely is it mowed?  I see this as perhaps the most inconsistent rule in the book.  They should either make Rule 25-2 apply through the green, or declare  it as an authorized local rule, but still applied through the green.  Let's take "fairway" out of the rules, or define it and declare it as a legitimate part of the course.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Asheville View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fourputt View Post
 

Its only real significance in the allowance for relief from divot holes is in the rather cavalier way that the R&A approached the issue.  As far as the overall effect on the game, having to hit from a divot hole is actually a fairly rare occurrence.  It's just a poor precedent, and one which I wouldn't expect a respected organization like the R&A to set.

 

I'm not sure that we should judge the R&A based upon what we think we know from this thread. 

 

We know that they were permissive enough to allow relief from divot holes in direct contravention to Rule 13-1.  That seems to be reason enough to me.  

post #329 of 517
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fourputt View Post
 

 

I confess to having problems with that one too.  I can't see any good reason for having one rule which tries to differentiate between fairway and rough.  If it's felt that the embedded ball deserves particular attention in the rules, then it should apply through the green at all times.  The rules do not recognize or define "fairway", yet they then write a rule which does recognize... 

 

  

 

 

FWIW I've been told the whole "closely mown" issue under R25-2 has been discussed by the USGA and R&A, at least in the past.  The R&A wanting to maintain "only closely mown", while the USGA would like to see it go away and just use through the green. 

 

Not sure how accurate this is, but it came from someone who would be in a position to know.

post #330 of 517
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dormie1360 View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fourputt View Post
 

 

I confess to having problems with that one too.  I can't see any good reason for having one rule which tries to differentiate between fairway and rough.  If it's felt that the embedded ball deserves particular attention in the rules, then it should apply through the green at all times.  The rules do not recognize or define "fairway", yet they then write a rule which does recognize... 

 

  

 

 

FWIW I've been told the whole "closely mown" issue under R25-2 has been discussed by the USGA and R&A, at least in the past.  The R&A wanting to maintain "only closely mown", while the USGA would like to see it go away and just use through the green. 

 

Not sure how accurate this is, but it came from someone who would be in a position to know.

 

The USGA and the R&A sound more and more like the Democrats and Republicans politicking back and forth.  "We'll let you have your DMD's if you let us have our embedded ball rule."  Or something to that effect.  :roll:

post #331 of 517
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fourputt View Post
 

 

I confess to having problems with that one too.  I can't see any good reason for having one rule which tries to differentiate between fairway and rough.  If it's felt that the embedded ball deserves particular attention in the rules, then it should apply through the green at all times.  The rules do not recognize or define "fairway", yet they then write a rule which does recognize... 

  

 

.  

 

My point was really about preferred lies being in direct contravention with the fundamental principle of playing the course as you find it.

(As it may be argued are LCP and LCR}.

post #332 of 517
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rulesman View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fourputt View Post
 

 

I confess to having problems with that one too.  I can't see any good reason for having one rule which tries to differentiate between fairway and rough.  If it's felt that the embedded ball deserves particular attention in the rules, then it should apply through the green at all times.  The rules do not recognize or define "fairway", yet they then write a rule which does recognize... 

  

 

.  

 

My point was really about preferred lies being in direct contravention with the fundamental principle of playing the course as you find it.

(As it may be argued are LCP and LCR}.

 

I tend to agree with you on that too.  Even when the guys I regularly play with were playing preferred lies, I almost never did.  I just don't like the concept.  I can, however understand it as a temporary condition when a competition is scheduled and it would be unfair to attempt to play the course normally after a particularly rainy period leading into the tournament.  Trying to reschedule just might not be feasible.  Mother nature doesn't really care about schedules or the Rules of Golf.  

 

For casual golf, I don't see the necessity.  If there is an entire season (i.e. "winter rules") when such conditions exist and normal play isn't possible, then I question whether play should be attempted at all.  In much of the world, golf courses are located in places where winter play is limited or impractical and the players there seem to get along without the game for the closed season.  

post #333 of 517
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fourputt View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rulesman View Post
 

 

My point was really about preferred lies being in direct contravention with the fundamental principle of playing the course as you find it.

(As it may be argued are LCP and LCR}.

 

 

I tend to agree with you on that too.  Even when the guys I regularly play with were playing preferred lies, I almost never did.  I just don't like the concept.  I can, however understand it as a temporary condition when a competition is scheduled and it would be unfair to attempt to play the course normally after a particularly rainy period leading into the tournament.  Trying to reschedule just might not be feasible.  Mother nature doesn't really care about schedules or the Rules of Golf.  

 

For casual golf, I don't see the necessity.  If there is an entire season (i.e. "winter rules") when such conditions exist and normal play isn't possible, then I question whether play should be attempted at all.  In much of the world, golf courses are located in places where winter play is limited or impractical and the players there seem to get along without the game for the closed season.  

 

 

The bolded text in your post is what preferred lies is all about and under those circumstances it IMO is justified. Unfortunately LCP and LCR are IMO misused in professional golf to give the players best possible lie instead of getting out of a bad/unfair one.

 

In casual golf I do not see any need for Rules in the first place. If someone is happier after having moved his ball from a bad lie is that hurting someone else? Of course, that is not real golf but I have had the impression that a vast majority of casual golfers in USA play the game like that. Having said that, I am of the opinion that Rules of Golf are there only for competitive golf, be it a real competition or a mere battle between a single player and the course.

post #334 of 517
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ignorant View Post
 

Unfortunately LCP and LCR are IMO misused in professional golf to give the players best possible lie instead of getting out of a bad/unfair one.

 

I know that @Fourputt and I agree, but the PGA Tour's frequent use of LCP is off the topic, as are your thoughts on whether there's "any need for Rules in the first place."

post #335 of 517
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rulesman View Post
 

 

My point was really about preferred lies being in direct contravention with the fundamental principle of playing the course as you find it.

(As it may be argued are LCP and LCR}.

 

I agree with you, but these are still local rules that are authorized by Appendix I and therefore this is an issue more of what the rules SHOULD be.  Whereas we still haven't seen anything in the rule or the policy of Appendix I which justifies a divot rule.  The fundamental principles are just that, principles, but the Rules are AN implementation of those principles which, reality being what it is, will never completely embody those principles.  The game cannot be governed by principles it has to have concrete rules.  The rulesmakers could have stayed closer to the principles by never allowing LCP but they chose not to.  They could have deviated further from the principles and extended GUR relief to divots but they chose not to.  Ultimately someone has to chose and then as golfers we (hopefully) abide by those choices.

post #336 of 517
Quote:
Originally Posted by MS256 View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rulesman View Post
 

There is no close season in the UK. Golf only stops if the course is under snow or water.

Mats are designed to prevent divot damage. They make no material difference to players' scores. After a few attempts the apprehension disappears. Preferred lies simply allow players to play from normal spring to autumn fairway surfaces. Incidentally, the handicap rules require that the distance limit is 6".

It certainly would make a big difference in mine. Let me lay my ball on a piece of carpet and I'll shoot at least 4 to 6 strokes lower almost without exception.

 

(But that's just me).

 

It isn't just you. I'm a single digit handicap off mats.

post #337 of 517
Quote:
Originally Posted by turtleback View Post
 

 

I agree with you, but these are still local rules that are authorized by Appendix I 

 

Appendix I does not authorize mats 

post #338 of 517
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rulesman View Post
 

 

Appendix I does not authorize mats 

 

True, but it does allow for special circumstances to be submitted to the ruling body for an individual authorization.  And they also only seem to be use during a limited part of the season (if I am remembering the upthread comments).  There has also not been any indication that the divot rule was individually authorized, else why not just withdraw the authorizations rather than issue a decision) nor that the divot rule was only in force for a limited period of time when the course was vulnerable.  There is an intrinsic difference between a rule instituted for the protection of the course and, as has been intimated by others in this thread, one that is instituted to overcome some perceived "unfairness" in a good drive ending in a divot.

 

Were mats (and the divot rule) used in formal competitions?  Because another difference is that in the UK, as I understand it, only rounds in formal competitions count for handicap purposes, whereas in the states all rounds do.  So when a club in the states makes a local rule it must comply with the ROG because all rounds count towards handicap and need to be played under the ROG.  In the UK I can see that it would be perfectly reasonable to have a local rule that does not comply with the ROG for rounds that are not part of a formal competition since they are not counted for handicap and therefore strict adherence to the ROG is not as critical.

post #339 of 517
Quote:
Originally Posted by turtleback View Post
 

 

True, but it does allow for special circumstances to be submitted to the ruling body for an individual authorization.  And they also only seem to be use during a limited part of the season (if I am remembering the upthread comments).  There has also not been any indication that the divot rule was individually authorized, else why not just withdraw the authorizations rather than issue a decision) nor that the divot rule was only in force for a limited period of time when the course was vulnerable.  There is an intrinsic difference between a rule instituted for the protection of the course and, as has been intimated by others in this thread, one that is instituted to overcome some perceived "unfairness" in a good drive ending in a divot.

 

Were mats (and the divot rule) used in formal competitions?  Because another difference is that in the UK, as I understand it, only rounds in formal competitions count for handicap purposes, whereas in the states all rounds do.  So when a club in the states makes a local rule it must comply with the ROG because all rounds count towards handicap and need to be played under the ROG.  In the UK I can see that it would be perfectly reasonable to have a local rule that does not comply with the ROG for rounds that are not part of a formal competition since they are not counted for handicap and therefore strict adherence to the ROG is not as critical.

 

The UK and Ireland handicap system make specific provision allowing mats to be used in handicap Qualifying Competitions.

 

Q. May an Affiliated Club conduct a Qualifying Competition(s) when the use of fairway mats to protect the course is obligatory?
A. Yes, a club may run Qualifying Competition(s) under such conditions provided:
• Their use is restricted to the Preferred Lie Period (1st October to 30th of April).
• All other requirements for Competition Play Conditions have been satisfied.
• A Local Rule for the use of Fairway Mats has been set out in the Conditions of the Competition.

 

post #340 of 517
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rulesman View Post
 

 

The UK and Ireland handicap system make specific provision allowing mats to be used in handicap Qualifying Competitions.

 

Q. May an Affiliated Club conduct a Qualifying Competition(s) when the use of fairway mats to protect the course is obligatory?
A. Yes, a club may run Qualifying Competition(s) under such conditions provided:
• Their use is restricted to the Preferred Lie Period (1st October to 30th of April).
• All other requirements for Competition Play Conditions have been satisfied.
• A Local Rule for the use of Fairway Mats has been set out in the Conditions of the Competition.

 

I think these details have just put the use of the mats squarely within the policy of Appendix I which reads, in relevant part:

 

Quote:
 

b. “Preferred Lies” and “Winter Rules”

Adverse conditions, including the poor condition of the course or the existence of mud, are sometimes so general, particularly during winter months, that the Committee may decide to grant relief by temporary Local Rule either to protect the course or to promote fair and pleasant play. The Local Rule should be withdrawn as soon as the conditions warrant.

 

Given the fact that its use is restricted to the Preferred Lie Period the mat rule just seems like a type of preferred lie local rule.  Now granted, the specimen local rule for preferred lies does not include mats but the specimen local rules are recommendations, not requirements.  And using rounds played under preferred lies for handicap purposes also matches the USGA policy of using rounds played under a preferred lie local rule for handicap purposes.

 

Do you know if the use of the divot rule was similarly restricted to the Preferred Lie Period in the clubs that used it, or did they use it throughout the year?

 

PS:  Am I correct in assuming that the quote you posted is from the UK equivalent of the Handicap Manual?

post #341 of 517
Quote:
Originally Posted by turtleback View Post
 

 

1) Do you know if the use of the divot rule was similarly restricted to the Preferred Lie Period in the clubs that used it, or did they use it throughout the year?

 

2) PS:  Am I correct in assuming that the quote you posted is from the UK equivalent of the Handicap Manual?

 

1) Sorry, I don't know.

2) You are.

post #342 of 517

Nope

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