Explanation: Handicap Index (HI) when fewer than 20 scores in the Scoring Record
Following discussions, particularly with newer members, I concluded that further explanation of the workings of the Handicap Index (HI) process may help to reinforce everyone’s understanding.
The WHS calculation of handicaps is significantly different from the previous CONGU system. A golfer’s Handicap Index (HI) under WHS is based on their demonstrated ability. It is inevitable when moving to a system based on demonstrated ability, rather than potential, that changes would occur during transition.
In addition, several newer members are returning scores for Handicap purposes. They are getting to grips with how that impacts on the award of the Initial HI and how the HI might change as more scores are returned.
Your HI is based on the average of your best 8 scores from last 20 qualifying scores in your Scoring Record back to 1st January 2018. However, if you have less than 20 qualifying scores, an “averaging” sliding scale is applied as follows:
19 Scores on record – average of lowest 7
17 or 18 Scores on record – average of lowest 6
15 or 16 Scores on record – average of lowest 5
12 to 14 Scores on record – average of lowest 4
9 to 11 Scores on record – average of lowest 3
7 or 8 Scores on record – average of lowest 2
6 Scores on record – average of lowest 2 (less further adjustment -1.0)
5 – use the lowest score (no further adjustment)
4 – use the lowest score (less further adjustment -1.0)
3 – use the lowest score (less further adjustment -2.0) = Initial HI.
It is therefore apparent that some members with less than 20 scores will notice a material difference between their new HI as compared with their previous CONGU handicap.
Furthermore, when a member has only submitted a small number of scores it is possible for material changes to the HI until high and low scores start to level out as part of the averaging process. Over time, the more scores a golfer submits from general / casual or competition play, the more accurately the WHS HI will reflect that player’s ability.