Golf Officials: It Boggles The Mind!!
Give a man a little power and watch out! Remember Sarah Brown and the retired elementary school principal incident last year on the Futures Tour? It happened again, this week, at the USGA Junior Amateur. Here’s the story as reported by the Kitsap Sun in Washington State:
” When is a hole-in-one not a hole-in-one?
Connor Klein of Long Tree, Colo., found out on Monday during the first round of the 64th U.S. Junior Amateur at Gold Mountain Golf Club.
Klein aced the 170-yard, par 3, No. 5 hole. But it went down as a birdie.
Klein’s threesome, which included Alex Church of Timonium, Md., and Andrew Bonner of Ripon, Calif., was warned for slow play. The players were clocked again at the fifth hole and they were all docked a stroke.
The three players appealed to USGA officials. Klein turned out to be the only player penalized, so his score of one became a two.
“It’s a birdie,” said the USGA’s David Staebler, director of the Junior Amateur tournament, shrugging his shoulders.
Staebler said it’s the first time he’s ever seen that happen in a tournament.
It was the only penalty of the day for slow play.
Klein birdied the next hole, but ended with an 82.”
So here’s my question: REALLY, USGA GUY, REALLY??? How in the name of all that is sacred do you dock one kid in the group? The kid who couldn’t possibly have played the hole slowly BECAUSE HE ACED IT????
I need medication…
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Players are almost never penalized for slow play for taking time between shots, they're penalized for the time it actually takes to play when it's their turn.
The USGA guideline for the maximum time it should take a player to play his stroke is 40 seconds. That time is measured from when it's his turn to play (which is a reasonable amount of time from when a fellow competitor's shot has come to rest, or when he is first to play and he has arrived at his ball and put down his clubs ), until the moment he strikes the ball.
If he was warned previously about a "bad time" (which he was), then his next time over 40 seconds would result in a 1 stroke penalty. Simple as that.
40 seconds may not seem like a long time, but in golf terms it's an eternity.