Clarification of Handicapping Impact When Playing Stableford
I have been asked to clarify some players misunderstanding about the potential impact on your Handicap Index by “picking up” during individual Stableford competition format which has a Handicap Allowance restriction of 95%.
Scores for Handicap are computed by reference to your Course Handicap (CH). It is therefore important to emphasise that with a 95% handicap allowance most players will have a LOWER Playing Handicap (PH) for Competition purposes than their CH which is relevant for Handicap purposes. Players may therefore occasionally pick up too soon in Stableford format.
For example, a man with a Handicap Index of 17.9, playing from the Yellow Tees,
will have a Course Handicap (CH) of 18 and a Playing Handicap (PH) of 17 (95%).
For the purposes of the competition he will not get a shot on the 5th hole which is Stroke Index 18. When playing that hole, if he has not holed out after 4 strokes he may be tempted to pick up because he cannot score any Stableford points.
However, for Handicap purposes it is the Course Handicap that is relevant. In this example with a CH of 18 he does have a shot on the 5th. Therefore if he had continued and holed out with his 5th stroke then 5 net 4 goes on the handicapping scoring record.
Why is this important ??
If he picked up after 4 strokes and therefore has not completed the hole this counts as a “net double bogey” for handicap purposes resulting in a score of 6 for that hole. This could therefore inadvertently contribute to an INCREASE his Handicap index.
Remember to consider this on the holes where your CH is higher than you PH !!