Thursday, April 26, 2012

Handicap Posting Season

We have received the following update from the GOLF ASSOCIATION OF ONTARIO regarding the Handicap Posting Season. It deals with scores posted before April 15th. For those of you lucky enough to spend some time down south this winter it also encourages you to post your scores for rounds played while you were away in the GAO handicap system.

The Club's Handicap Peer review will be matching your rounds played with scores entered. This begins April 15th so please ensure that you post all your scores including partial rounds.

Active Handicap Season
 As many of you know, Ontario has an inactive season in which scores are not to be posted for handicap purposes. Ontario 's active season runs from April 15 to October 31 each year. We have been blessed with extraordinary weather this spring in most of the Province (the first time in quite a while) and with it many inquiries have been sent about score posting from both golfers and clubs. As your club is using the "Eagle" version of the national handicap system, our vendor GolfNet will be running a utility today, Monday, April 23 which will filter out scores from the handicap calculation on the system which have been posted from Ontario golf courses during the inactive season. To be clear, only scores posted by members from Ontario courses posted after October 31 but prior to April 15 will be filtered out. For example, if scores were played on Florida courses (as one example) by an Ontario resident these scores must be posted and will count in the handicap calculation, as Florida enjoys an all year round active season. Running this filter on the system will ensure handicaps are accurate, and consistent with the rest of the Province/Country. This will be reflected on your system once an update is completed to the server after Monday.

Why do we have an inactive season?

It is impossible to accurately predict off-season conditions and please keep in mind it varies from region to region and year to year: Thunder Bay , Windsor and Ottawa have three fairly different weather patterns and conditions at the same time of year. Foliage, slower green speeds compared to mid-season, reduced bounce/roll all GREATLY affect a course's difficulty, making courses play much longer compared to mid-season. Turf conditions are generally soft, and rough height is usually short/thin as grasses are predominantly dormant outside April 15/October 31. We also have many temporary greens and tees, sometimes lasting into May. Conditions during winter months are simply too inconsistent compared to the way a course was rated (mid-season), and posting scores played during these times would affect a player's Handicap Factor. This is why an Inactive Season was created (nearly all State and Provincial Golf Associations have them), to help ensure some consistency of when scores would be posted by the majority of golfers, which in turn would help keep handicaps accurate. The GAO Handicap and Course Rating Committee review the Inactive Season dates, and this year will be no different. Our review includes evaluating weather over several years, and noting if a change is warranted. The last few springs have been some of the worst on record, the same holds true of with a few of our falls.

Should you like more information on Active/Inactive Handicap Season and why we have one, please read article #2 at this link:

We do appreciate your support,

Craig Loughry - GAO
Director of Handicapping
& Course Rating
Golf Association of Ontario

Active Handicap Season - Ontario

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