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WHS Handicaps Now Live

Gerard Gregoire has made the changes to our My Handicap and Live Scoring apps required by the new World Handicap System. The first thing you will notice about My Handicap is the wide range of course handicaps you’ll have for our 6 tee sets. And what will be most alarming for some is how low their handicaps are from the forward tees. Let’s look at why this is.

In the past, the USGA defined course handicap as the number of strokes a player needs to play down to the course rating. So under that system, “playing to your handicap” meant shooting a net score of 67-68 from the golds, 69-70 from the whites, etc. Under the WHS, course handicap has been redefined as the number of strokes a player needs to play down to par. So now playing to your handicap (from any tees at El Tigre) means shooting a net score of 72. Obviously it takes fewer handicap strokes to get your net score down to 72 than to 68.

Your main concern about handicaps should be the number of strokes you give or receive in a game against an opponent. If you and your opponent are on the same tees, the decreased handicaps don’t make any difference because your handicaps were decreased by the same amount. And if you’re playing against a player on a different set of tees, you will no longer have to adjust your handicap by the difference in course ratings as we did before, because your WHS handicap has already been adjusted. So let’s say that 15.0 index player plays from the golds against a 12.0 index playing from the whites. Under the old system, the gold tee player had a 15 course handicap from the golds, and the white tee player had a 13 course handicap from the whites. After adjusting for the 2.2 stroke difference in course ratings, they play even. Under WHS, the white tee player is an 11 and the gold tee player is an 11, so they still play even.

Gerard and I tested the system yesterday, and we think we ironed out all the kinks, but if something doesn’t seem right to you, please send us an email describing what you saw to and

As you know, when you post a score, you enter your Adjusted Gross Score, after reducing any excessively high hole scores to the maximum allowed for handicap purposes. One of the WHS changes, as I explained in a previous post, is to that maximum hole score. Under the old rules, a 10-19 handicap could take a 7, a 20-29 handicap could take an 8, and so on. Under WHS, everyone can take a net double bogey. This will become second-nature to you soon, but initially you may have to think about it. It is the sum of three numbers: Par for the hole, 2, and strokes you receive on the hole. Or another way to think of it is double bogey plus handicap strokes. You know that a double bogey on a par 4 is 6. If you get 2 strokes on a par 4, your maximum score would be 8. Here’s a chart that shows all the possibilities:

Maximum Hole Scores

As I said above, Gerard has updated the Live Scoring app, and it will automatically post an Adjusted Gross Score into the handicap system for you.

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