Jump to content
IGNORED

Should Divots Be Considered Ground Under Repair?


Foursum Golf

Should divot holes be considered GUR under the Rules of Golf?  

130 members have voted

  1. 1. Should divot holes be considered GUR under the Rules of Golf?



Recommended Posts

All joking apart - wrong about what?

I'm fine with the current rule as it stands - and have said as much. It's clear and unambiguous - which is to its credit. I'm not lobbying for a change.

I am stating as a fact that, as a matter of widespread practice, we played under a different rule previously and the consequences weren't awful, or even commented upon. If there had been a scandal about the Home of Golf playing illegitimate preferred lies, I think we'd have heard about it.

And I think it's ludicrous to propose that half of a country's handicaps were historically invalidated as a result.

Iacas - I just saw your last edit to your post.

Put it this way - if anyone can turn up a credible piece of commentary from around the time of the new Decision being made or issued in 2009, indicating that there was widespread concern that clubs up and down the country were making local rules in breach of the Rules of Golf, I'll cheerfully and graciously admit my mistake.

But "in breach of" does not mean "inconsistent with your personal view of the principles or policies underlying the Rules".

Link to comment
Share on other sites


Really? So the golfers at half the courses in Scotland had invalid handicaps prior to 2010? When an argument leads to an absurd conclusion, it's reasonable (though to be fair, not conclusive) to suspect that the argument itself is absurd.

I rather doubt that "half the courses in Scotland" used this rule, or it would have been heard of long before this.  The question of relief from divots comes up on this forum at least twice a year, and we have a number of members from the UK, and from Scotland in particular who would have mentioned such a local rule had they known about it.  You are way off the target on this topic and you can't possibly win.  Any courses which used such a local rule were in direct conflict with the Rules of Golf, and any handicap scores from such courses would be invalid.  Although I'm not totally conversant with the handicap policy in the UK, I do know that it is more strict about posting qualification than the USGA policy.

Rick

"He who has the fastest cart will never have a bad lie."

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

  • Administrator
All joking apart - wrong about what?

Who's joking?

You're wrong about it ever being allowed under the Rules.

Again, please quit while you're behind.

Erik J. Barzeski —  I knock a ball. It goes in a gopher hole. 🏌🏼‍♂️
Director of Instructor Development, 5 Simple Keys®/Golf Evolution • Owner, The Sand Trap .com • AuthorLowest Score Wins • Golf Digest "Best Young Teachers in America" 2016-17 • "Best in State" 2017-20 • WNY Section PGA Teacher of the Year 2019 • Penn-State Behrend Head Coach • • • • • • • • • • :aimpoint: :edel: :true_linkswear:

Check Out: New Topics | TST Blog | Golf Terms | Instructional Content | Analyzr | 5SK.com | LSW | Instructional Droplets

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

Originally Posted by Fourputt

And he was answered.  Correctly ( and according to the rules because we are in the Rules Forum).  Logically (divots are a natural part of the game, and have been since the first one was created some 400 years ago).  Then you decided to add your two cents worth.... and it doesn't even have that much value.

You are entitled to your opinion, and we are entitled to show you how wrong you

Just slightly before you think you are The God who says which Rule is to be changed and which is not I would like to remind you that a new Decision Book 2014-2015 has recently been published. In that book there seems to be quite a few Decisions revised and some even turned around 180 degrees, not to mention the new ones that change things more than just a little.

So maybe the Rules aren't that perfect yet... and opinions are still allowed, for everyone.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


Just slightly before you think you are The God who says which Rule is to be changed and which is not I would like to remind you that a new Decision Book 2014-2015 has recently been published. In that book there seems to be quite a few Decisions revised and some even turned around 180 degrees, not to mention the new ones that change things more than just a little.

So maybe the Rules aren't that perfect yet... and opinions are still allowed, for everyone.

Show my where one of those decisions modifies Rule 13-1.  That is the only rule we are discussing here.  Don't be putting words in my post which aren't there.  I am speaking about a very specific issue.

Keep in mind also that most decisions are no more than clarifications of the Rules, not modifications of the rules.  The Rules are only revised on a 4 year cycle.

Rick

"He who has the fastest cart will never have a bad lie."

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

I rather doubt that "half the courses in Scotland" used this rule, or it would have been heard of long before this.  The question of relief from divots comes up on this forum at least twice a year, and we have a number of members from the UK, and from Scotland in particular who would have mentioned such a local rule had they known about it.  You are way off the target on this topic and you can't possibly win.  Any courses which used such a local rule were in direct conflict with the Rules of Golf, and any handicap scores from such courses would be invalid.  Although I'm not totally conversant with the handicap policy in the UK, I do know that it is more strict about posting qualification than the USGA policy.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but UK handicap only applies scores from tournament play and Rulesman stated that no course would impose such a local rule during tournament play.  If Rulesman is correct then anyone playing under such a rule at a muni in Scotland was only playing a practice round and the rule allowing a golfer to move their ball from a divot would be no different than if they permitted foot wedges and mulligans too.

Joe Paradiso

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

Who's joking?

You're wrong about it ever being allowed under the Rules.

Again, please quit while you're behind.

I am taking a bold step in trying to be a referee here.

The way I read Birly never said it was according to the Rules. What he is saying is that in his region this was allowed by a Local Rule. Now, making such LR is not allowed by the RoG but as it is there the player inevitable tend to follow it.

Not much sense to argue about that, I think.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


Quote:

Originally Posted by birlyshirly

Really? So the golfers at half the courses in Scotland had invalid handicaps prior to 2010? When an argument leads to an absurd conclusion, it's reasonable (though to be fair, not conclusive) to suspect that the argument itself is absurd.

I rather doubt that "half the courses in Scotland" used this rule, or it would have been heard of long before this.  The question of relief from divots comes up on this forum at least twice a year, and we have a number of members from the UK, and from Scotland in particular who would have mentioned such a local rule had they known about it.  You are way off the target on this topic and you can't possibly win.  Any courses which used such a local rule were in direct conflict with the Rules of Golf, and any handicap scores from such courses would be invalid.  Although I'm not totally conversant with the handicap policy in the UK, I do know that it is more strict about posting qualification than the USGA policy.

Everyone's entitled to their opinion, but you're quite pigheaded in your unwillingness to accept the facts of what was happening on the ground in a country of which you have evidently limited experience.

http://www.scottishgolfview.com/2009/12/changes-to-decisions-on-rules-of-golf.html

I know this states that divot relief contravenes Rule 13.1, but it's also described as a "change" (ie from previous practice) and the authority of the Committee to make the local rule is "withdrawn" (not simply invalid). And of course, the Decision only came into effect on 1 Jan 2010 - so how anyone can argue that a prospective Decision retrospectively invalidated handicaps is beyond logic.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


Show my where one of those decisions modifies Rule 13-1.  That is the only rule we are discussing here.  Don't be putting words in my post which aren't there.  I am speaking about a very specific issue.

Keep in mind also that most decisions are no more than clarifications of the Rules, not modifications of the rules.  The Rules are only revised on a 4 year cycle.

I did not have to, you did it yourself. You said that opinion presented by Birly is wrong. How can an opinion be wrong? It is just an opinion, so are you the Judge? Besides, how can you be so sure that R13-1 would not be changed in time (as it already was in 2010 as pointed out by Birly)? The potential need for a change is what this discussion is all about, not at all what the Rule is or has been.

Yup, having been a referee on a national level quite a few years I do know the distinction of Decisions and Rules. Unfortunately some Decisions overrule a Rule instead of clarifying it so I would call that a modification of a Rule. Just a recent change in D30/2.5 proves my point. You should reaad it, too, and maybe the rest of the Decisions as well ;-)

Link to comment
Share on other sites


Everyone's entitled to their opinion, but you're quite pigheaded in your unwillingness to accept the facts of what was happening on the ground in a country of which you have evidently limited experience.

http://www.scottishgolfview.com/2009/12/changes-to-decisions-on-rules-of-golf.html

I know this states that divot relief contravenes Rule 13.1, but it's also described as a "change" (ie from previous practice) and the authority of the Committee to make the local rule is "withdrawn" (not simply invalid). And of course, the Decision only came into effect on 1 Jan 2010 - so how anyone can argue that a prospective Decision retrospectively invalidated handicaps is beyond logic.

Extremely good point.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


Quote:

Originally Posted by iacas

Who's joking?

You're wrong about it ever being allowed under the Rules.

Again, please quit while you're behind.

I am taking a bold step in trying to be a referee here.

The way I read Birly never said it was according to the Rules. What he is saying is that in his region this was allowed by a Local Rule. Now, making such LR is not allowed by the RoG but as it is there the player inevitable tend to follow it.

Not much sense to argue about that, I think.

Thank you Ignorant (you should get a new screen-name I think :-) ) - you've understood me perfectly, except the very last part that I bolded. I'd be the first to accept that the LR giving relief from divots is no longer allowable, and that any players or courses still operating divot relief are clearly in breach of the current rules.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


Why the hell would I do that when the rules clearly allow me to repair it? I'm not advocating self flagellation here, I use the rules to my advantage as much as I can but I do use the rules.

You were the one who said play the course as you found it, not me.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


Funny how so many posters get so heated and moralistic and spirit-of-the-game-ish. The current rule is the current rule, but it's pretty arbitrary IMO. I don't recall any great hoo-ha in the years when you could legally move your ball from a divot.

If there's a justification for the current rule, it's probably to save wear and tear on the course.

I did not have to, you did it yourself. You said that opinion presented by Birly is wrong. How can an opinion be wrong? It is just an opinion, so are you the Judge? Besides, how can you be so sure that R13-1 would not be changed in time (as it already was in 2010 as pointed out by Birly)? The potential need for a change is what this discussion is all about, not at all what the Rule is or has been.

Yup, having been a referee on a national level quite a few years I do know the distinction of Decisions and Rules. Unfortunately some Decisions overrule a Rule instead of clarifying it so I would call that a modification of a Rule. Just a recent change in D30/2.5 proves my point. You should reaad it, too, and maybe the rest of the Decisions as well ;-)

You may have missed the above bolded in birly's post.  The statements lack of qualification makes it appear that moving a ball from a divot was permissible until 2010 and that no one was upset when it was addressed by the R&A; and USGA.

A local course using a loophole has no effect on anyone playing golf outside those select courses in Scotland since it was not a common rule nor ever used by professional golfers during sanctioned tournaments.   The Rules of Golf never permitted moving the ball from a divot, the R&A; / USGA reinforced their opinion on it in 2010 ruling that a course couldn't enact local rules to permit it either.

If the Rules of Golf has to address every possible thing a golfer is not permitted to do and every possible rule that a local course could implement it would be bigger than the ACA bill.

None of that is opinion.

Joe Paradiso

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

  • Moderator

I am taking a bold step in trying to be a referee here.

The way I read Birly never said it was according to the Rules. What he is saying is that in his region this was allowed by a Local Rule. Now, making such LR is not allowed by the RoG but as it is there the player inevitable tend to follow it.

Not much sense to argue about that, I think.

@birlyshirly also said, " There's not a fence in this argument. There's a yawing chasm, swimming with two headed crocopigs."

Now this prompted me to look up what a crocopig is.  I had never heard of it.  It is defined as:

1. A woman who is not just fat but fugly too. Comes from the joining of Crocodile and Pig.

Now if a crocopig was in said divot, I would assume it would be considered a dangerous animal situation and you would be entitled to relief.  But that is :offtopic:

Scott

Titleist, Edel, Scotty Cameron Putter, Snell - AimPoint - Evolvr - MirrorVision -MEVO+

My Swing Thread

boogielicious - Adjective describing the perfect surf wave

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

I think the discussion about divots arises because, although it's your bad luck to roll into one, it still grates that the situation wouldn't have arisen if each player properly replaced/repaired their own divots as described in the etiquette section of the rules. Bad bounces, difficult lies and other acts of nature don't have any other player's poor behaviour as their root cause - so I at least understand why a player's reaction might be different in the case of divots.

So long as the question is what relief the rules ought to provide - I don't see a massive distinction between repairing a ballmark on the green and moving your ball out of a divot.

I don't see any distinction between repairing a ball mark on the green or moving your ball from a divot.  Both are due to someone else's negligence and have no business being there.  And someone else replying you can't do that because that's the rules is not addressing that point in the slightest.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


  • Administrator
I'd be the first to accept that the LR giving relief from divots is no longer allowable, and that any players or courses still operating divot relief are clearly in breach of the current rules.

It was never allowed. Neither the Rules nor the Decisions can exhaustively list every negative thing you can't do. 33-8b is still there, and clubs who had this "local rule" were violating the Rules of Golf. Period.

It's like positive reinforcement via clicker training for a dog. There are only 10 things or whatever that a dog is allowed to do, but nearly infinite things its NOT allowed to do. So you focus on the positive, and only when something becomes egregious enough on the negative side that you HAVE to punish it once, do you punish the negative.

The way I read Birly never said it was according to the Rules. What he is saying is that in his region this was allowed by a Local Rule. Now, making such LR is not allowed by the RoG but as it is there the player inevitable tend to follow it.

Not much sense to argue about that, I think.

@newtogolf responded on my behalf to share where @birlyshirly spoke incorrectly..

I did not have to, you did it yourself. You said that opinion presented by Birly is wrong. How can an opinion be wrong?

We are not discussing an opinion.

It is a matter of fact - not opinion - whether some golf clubs had an illegal/incorrect/unadvised/whatever "local rule" on the books. It's a matter of fact whether the handling of divot holes was different prior to 2010 versus after.

And on those facts, @birlyshirly is wrong.

Besides, how can you be so sure that R13-1 would not be changed in time (as it already was in 2010 as pointed out by Birly)?

The Rule was not changed in 2010. It was clarified. The rule itself (33-8, particularly 33-8b) remained the same.


If half of the golf clubs of Scotland were using an incorrect Rule, then that's surprising, but we also have only one lousy post which says this). The only instance I can find of this on the R&A; website after a quick search is this one: http://www.randa.org/en/RandA/News/News/2010/February/Why-is-there-no-relief-from-divots-on-the-fairway.aspx . It's dated 2010, so it's after the Decision clarified things.

The potential need for a change is what this discussion is all about, not at all what the Rule is or has been.

No, that's one possible topic. We're not discussing that topic now.

P.S. The word "divot" appears once in http://shop.randa.org/shop/productfiles/61535_GoRaC_Complete.pdf . That's from 2009. It mentions only divots in a drop zone.

I don't see any distinction between repairing a ball mark on the green or moving your ball from a divot.  Both are due to someone else's negligence and have no business being there.  And someone else replying you can't do that because that's the rules is not addressing that point in the slightest.

One is allowed. The other is not. There's one difference.

The Putting Green is defined as a special place in the rules. "The fairway" is not. There's another.

It's your opinion that they "have no business" being there. It's also your opinion that "you don't see any distinction."

To address your point directly, I do not think they should ever allow relief from a divot hole, simply because you can't really define a divot hole or when a divot hole ceases to be a divot hole.

And I deleted another of your posts because it was malformed and contained everything in a quote block. Please read the URL I sent you and properly format your responses.

Erik J. Barzeski —  I knock a ball. It goes in a gopher hole. 🏌🏼‍♂️
Director of Instructor Development, 5 Simple Keys®/Golf Evolution • Owner, The Sand Trap .com • AuthorLowest Score Wins • Golf Digest "Best Young Teachers in America" 2016-17 • "Best in State" 2017-20 • WNY Section PGA Teacher of the Year 2019 • Penn-State Behrend Head Coach • • • • • • • • • • :aimpoint: :edel: :true_linkswear:

Check Out: New Topics | TST Blog | Golf Terms | Instructional Content | Analyzr | 5SK.com | LSW | Instructional Droplets

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

I don't see any distinction between repairing a ball mark on the green or moving your ball from a divot.  Both are due to someone else's negligence and have no business being there.  And someone else replying you can't do that because that's the rules is not addressing that point in the slightest.

I understand that point greatly (other people shouldn't screw with your game - frankly, not replacing a divot should be a penalty).

(I agree that simply quoting the rules without explaining the reason behind the rules is always a half answer, but still useful to start with - annoying as it is, I've learned a ton here from guys like Fourputt and Rulesman, etc just from that)

But i think it is different due to the nature and intent of the shot:  (or at least can be looked at in a different light)

A full hit - The intent is to get a good strike under whatever condition the ball finds itself in.  Since it is in flight 95% of the time, you can overcome the 'non-perfect lie' (like a divot) with a skillful strike.  Hazards are analogous, it takes learning a certain stroke that's different from the 'perfect lie' stroke.  So don't think of it as a "divot"  think of it as a "randomly dispersed mini-hazard".  And there is a special case where you can avoid them - it's called a tee box.

A putt - the intent is to get a good strike by judging line and weight correctly under ideal rolling conditions.  Since it is in contact with the ground 95% of the time, you can't overcome that ball mark with skill.

it's a game where the precision is required in increasing increments the closure you get to the goal.  certainly the conditions should be compatible - i.e., the grounds should be more pristine the closer you get to the hole to continually increase the ratio of skill/luck required to succeed.  So in that light it makes perfect sense.

What I don't understand is why the rules aren't set up to allow fixing spike marks and any other unintended irregularity in the green........  (other than the jsut the stock "that's the way it is" response)

Bill - 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

  • Administrator
I understand that point greatly (other people shouldn't screw with your game - frankly, not replacing a divot should be a penalty).

Some courses prefer that you not replace divots. And again, what would be the point of replacing a few tufts of grass when a divot explodes. You can't penalize people for not replacing a divot just as you can't penalize someone for tripping and scuffing up the green. Or scuffing up the green on purpose. You can just consider them a jerk, and not play with them.

Erik J. Barzeski —  I knock a ball. It goes in a gopher hole. 🏌🏼‍♂️
Director of Instructor Development, 5 Simple Keys®/Golf Evolution • Owner, The Sand Trap .com • AuthorLowest Score Wins • Golf Digest "Best Young Teachers in America" 2016-17 • "Best in State" 2017-20 • WNY Section PGA Teacher of the Year 2019 • Penn-State Behrend Head Coach • • • • • • • • • • :aimpoint: :edel: :true_linkswear:

Check Out: New Topics | TST Blog | Golf Terms | Instructional Content | Analyzr | 5SK.com | LSW | Instructional Droplets

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

  • iacas changed the title to Should Divots Be Considered Ground Under Repair?

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now


  • Want to join this community?

    We'd love to have you!

    Sign Up
  • TST Partners

    TourStriker PlaneMate
    Golfer's Journal
    ShotScope
    The Stack System
    FlightScope Mevo
    Direct: Mevo, Mevo+, and Pro Package.

    Coupon Codes (save 10-15%): "IACAS" for Mevo/Stack, "IACASPLUS" for Mevo+/Pro Package, and "THESANDTRAP" for ShotScope.
  • Posts

    • I remember when I lived in Chicago, Ron Santo used to do commercials for a shoe store.  At the time Ron Santo had no feet. They were amputated due to type one diabetes.  Me giving wedge advice is akin to Ron Santo giving shoe advice.  Lots of places do straight up wedge fittings.  I've heard really good things about Edel's fitting process for wedges. 
    • In addition to the questions @ChetlovesMer asked… I have some issues. So you're going to try to create a new habit, a better swing, then immediately make probably just about as many swings trying to compete/score, which has a good probability of undoing all that you just did by going too fast, too soon? That's how I see that. I'd be much more in favor of dividing up the DAYS, and having one day a week where you do an assessment. And to keep things somewhat fresh, you could do assessments like this: Distance Wedge Wednesday Full Swing Friday Swing Speed Saturday Make Putts Monday (Tried to go for the alliteration there on Monday…). That way you're not just having one straight day of "assessments" (though I could see benefit in that, too).
    • Given, each 4 hour period needs to have things you have to specifically work on. It isn't like, "Oh 4 hours of mindlessly bashing golf balls down range!"  There is some use in bulk practice. 
    • Another idea might be, if you ever gotten fitted for irons, call up the iron shaft company and ask their recommendation? They might know what the correct thing might be, like cutting down an 8 iron shaft, or using their brand of wedge shaft. Maybe call the person who fitted you for irons. 
    • Yes, take advice from the two guys on the forum with the worst short game. That will get you far 😃

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

Welcome to TST! Signing up is free, and you'll see fewer ads and can talk with fellow golf enthusiasts! By using TST, you agree to our Terms of Use, our Privacy Policy, and our Guidelines.

The popup will be closed in 10 seconds...