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StuM

Is There a Correct Way to Let a Group "Play Through"?

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I would like thoughts on proper way to let a group "Play Through".

This weekend my wife & I were out for a round and a group ahead of us was slow and allowed another group to play through, but then it just seemed to bottle neck after that and I became curious if the real problem was the way in which the slow-group had the group behind play through.

Let me describe the scenario.  I will call my group "Group C".  Group B was directly ahead of us and Group A was directly ahead of Group B.  All groups were Two-player groups..  When we (Group C) got to the 3rd tee (A Par 4 hole) Group B was in the fairway waiting for Group A to exit the green.  Our wait on the tee seemed a little long but not so bad as to complain.  Once Group B played their approach shots we teed off and moved forward to our balls and saw Group A standing next to the #4 tee box (a par 5) and did not see anyone ahead of them.  After Group B exited the green on hole #3 we played up to the green and noticed Group A still standing at the #4 tee box.  As we exited the 3rd Green and drove towards #4 tee we noticed Group A waiting at #4 tee and Group B was in the fairway.  Group A allowed Group B to play through.  We then found ourselves on the tee box with Group A.  Before Group A was able to play their 2nd shot the group behind us joined us on the tee box at #4.  Now the course was becoming bottle-necked.

My question is, Should Group A have played their tee shot before letting Group B play through?  It seemed to me that by them waiting to tee off the actually caused more congestion then was fixed by allowing Group B to play through. 

On the #6 Hole we suggested joining up with Group A to make it a foursome but they declined.  On #7 tee the group behind us joined us to become a foursome which did help create a more steady pace.  Were we wrong in asking to join up with the group ahead since we were at every tee box with them anyway?

I look forward to thoughts on this.

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Group A should work on their "ready golf" technique.  And keep pace with the group ahead of them and/or catch up.  You didn't mention the size of the group ahead of Group A... gosh I hope it wasn't a fivesome!

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30 minutes ago, Double Mocha Man said:

Group A should work on their "ready golf" technique.  And keep pace with the group ahead of them and/or catch up.  You didn't mention the size of the group ahead of Group A... gosh I hope it wasn't a fivesome!

I think the group ahead of Group A was also two.  FYI, we teed off @ 4:45 in the afternoon which I think iis why so many smaller groups on the course.

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I always prefer playing through on par 3’s, and never on a par 5 or driveable par 4. I think the following works best:

Group A hits tee shots to green. When Group B gets to the tee, let them hit tee shots. Both groups go to green, where Group B finishes and heads to the next tee, while Group A finishes. 

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9 minutes ago, rvanculin said:

I always prefer playing through on par 3’s, and never on a par 5 or driveable par 4. I think the following works best:

Group A hits tee shots to green. When Group B gets to the tee, let them hit tee shots. Both groups go to green, where Group B finishes and heads to the next tee, while Group A finishes. 

That is what makes sense to me.

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7 minutes ago, iacas said:

The fastest way to play through is just to skip a par three. 🙂

Not to mention, when you're walking past that slow-moving group on the par 3 it definitely sends a message...

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1 minute ago, Double Mocha Man said:

Not to mention, when you're walking past that slow-moving group on the par 3 it definitely sends a message...

make sure to smile!  :-D

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6 hours ago, Double Mocha Man said:

Yep.  And keep your middle finger unfurled...

Reminding them that they are number 1? 🤣

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@StuM, I think you did everything correctly, including asking to pair up.  And I agree that Group A should have teed off and then invited Group B to proceed.

Par 3 holes do work well for playing through but some slow groups use that "rule" to keep faster groups slogging behind them for a long time.  The time to allow a faster group through is when a slow group stops keeping pace with the group in front, not five holes later when a par 3 occurs.

Sadly, the ultimate answer is Group A needs to get moving and keep pace.  Playing through is not a cure, just a bandage.  

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This is always a controversial subject, but it's a bit like driving. I don't bother overtaking a slow driver if I can see there is a queue of traffic ahead. Likewise, I wouldn't bother letting someone through if I know they are only going to get held up by three lot's of golfers in front of me. Unfortunately this is more often than not the case. Of course, none of this would be an issue if people didn't play slow golf, but regardless of rules and advice, we all know that will never happen.   

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I think carts ( or handheld device for walkers) should have a button to call the marshall in the way you can buzz a flight attendant on an airplane. Group A needs a good education from the marshall. Ya know, I think I’d like to be a marshall on a golf course.....🧐

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13 hours ago, iacas said:

The fastest way to play through is just to skip a par three. 🙂

I agree this works but the problem is it punishes the faster players by taking away a hole they have a right to play.  A golfer should not have to "Forfeit" a hole because of a slower group in front of them.

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10 minutes ago, Vinsk said:

I think carts ( or handheld device for walkers) should have a button to call the marshall in the way you can buzz a flight attendant on an airplane. Group A needs a good education from the marshall. Ya know, I think I’d like to be a marshall on a golf course.....🧐

How about a dog-training collar? Give the controller to the group behind. Bzzz! Bzzz!

Just now, StuM said:

I agree this works but the problem is it punishes the faster players by taking away a hole they have a right to play.  A golfer should not have to "Forfeit" a hole because of a slower group in front of them.

But when sunset is approaching, it can mean the difference between skipping one or missing several.

 I’ve done this, and then swing back to pick up the missing hole. That might not work at some courses.

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1 minute ago, Missouri Swede said:

How about a dog-training collar? Give the controller to the group behind. Bzzz! Bzzz!

I like the idea....just imagine, playing in my league and I can "Shock" the player ahead of me just as he is gong for that birdie putt so I can protect my chance at a skin on that hole.....OK, I guess I should not do that.

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6 minutes ago, StuM said:

I agree this works but the problem is it punishes the faster players by taking away a hole they have a right to play.  A golfer should not have to "Forfeit" a hole because of a slower group in front of them.

Note the smiley, man. C'mon… 😉

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8 minutes ago, Missouri Swede said:

But when sunset is approaching, it can mean the difference between skipping one or missing several.

 I’ve done this, and then swing back to pick up the missing hole. That might not work at some courses.

I agree this is best when needing to beat the sunset

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