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USGA and The R&A to Launch World Handicap System in 2020

Discussion in 'Golf News' started by Dogfish Head, Nov 5, 2019.

  1. Dogfish Head

    Dogfish Head Well-Known Member TEA is my HERO

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    The following news release is edited for length. Read the entire release here.

    By USGA Communications


    LIBERTY CORNER, N.J., and ST. ANDREWS, Scotland – The World Handicap System (WHS) is ready to be launched in January 2020 and will provide golfers with a unified and more inclusive handicapping system for the first time.

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    Though many countries are planning to adopt the new system in January, the system will go live in other parts of the world throughout the year to accommodate different implementation plans and variations in the golf calendar.

    Developed by the USGA and The R&A in close coordination with existing handicapping authorities, the WHS will provide all golfers with a consistent measure of playing ability, with handicaps calculated in the same way wherever they are in the world.

    A key objective of the initiative was to develop a modern system, enabling as many golfers as possible to obtain and maintain a Handicap Index.

    Golfers will be able to transport their Handicap Index globally and compete or play a casual round with players from other regions on a fair basis. It will also indicate the score a golfer is reasonably capable of achieving the next time they go out to play.

    The WHS has two main components – the Rules of Handicapping and the Course Rating System. The Rules of Handicapping are encompassed within seven Rules to inform administrators and golfers on how an official Handicap Index is calculated and administered, with some flexibility given to national associations based on how the sport is played and enjoyed in their region. The Course Rating System, based on the USGA Course Rating System first adopted nearly 50 years ago and already adopted on nearly every continent, sets out a consistent method of determining a course's difficulty. Together, these components become the foundational elements in determining a golfer's Handicap Index.

    In preparation for the launch of the WHS, more than 3,000 golf courses have been rated for the first time and an extensive education program has been delivered. By the end of 2019, more than 90 National Associations will have attended an educational seminar and a robust library of resources is hosted on WHS.com to support regional education.

    Rules of Handicapping books are being produced and will be translated and delivered through national associations.

    In addition, the USGA and The R&A have developed a series of golfer-focused materials, including videos, infographics and posters, which can be used by national associations and shared with golf clubs for the benefit of golfers.

    This includes a promotional video featuring Annika Sorenstam, Gary Player and voices of recreational golfers from around the world to encourage as many golfers as possible to obtain and maintain a handicap.

    To learn more about the World Handicap System, please visit usga.org/WHS. For WHS information specific to a country, use the Association Finder for further information.
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    Source: USGA and The R&A to Launch World Handicap System in 2020
     

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