Course and Slope ratings

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Scott Rushing
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Course and Slope ratings

So as I understand it, the course rating is the score a typical scratch golfer would score from that tee position whereas the slope is a reflection of how more (or less) difficult the course would be for the typical higher handicap player.  Or that's how it's been explained to me. 

Sometime look at a couple of the courses you play and see how these ratings line up in your head with how challenging the course is.  For me, I have one course, Pudding Ridge, which I play from the tips, 6800 yards on the scorecard.  Rated CR is 72, slope 133.  Now for the most part there, the wayward tee shot or approach shot can be found.  Usually in the rough between holes.  But there is trouble, there are places to lose balls on every hole and a decent amount of water.  But the fairways tend to be wide and landing areas generous.  I usually can shoot anywhere from 73-78 there. 

Now compare that to the course I p[layed yesterday, Tidewater Golf club in North Myrtle Beach.  We played the white tees, since most of the players were 90+ scorers...From there, it is rated CR of 70 and slope of 127.   I shot 77 which was a really good score for me on that course.  There is SOOOOO much more danger on that course for the average golfer. I'm surprised the ratings are lower.  Water and marsh abound on that course.   every green bunkered by multiple Bunkers, tough green constructs, water, etc.  I guess the yardage must be a BIG part of that rating calculation.  It was only about 6300-6400 from the whites.  

Do you notice courses you play where you see something similar? 

 

 

Scott Rushing
Scott Rushing's picture
Another interesting factiod

Another interesting factiod here...I read recently that to figure out what you might expect to shoot on a golf course, you figure out based on your handicap index, what your course handicap would be (using the USGA course handicap calculator) and then add that to the Course Rating, NOT to the Par rating for the course.  Because the CR is the measure of how difficult the course is for a scratch golfer, and then you add to that your course handicap.    And then add 3 to that - as they "say" golfers average 3 strokes over their course handicap.

I never knew that.  Makes sense when you think about it that way.

 

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Aimee
Aimee's picture
Slope

Scott, I agree that I have played courses with higher slopes that I did not find to be more difficult and I believe yardage must be weighted heavily into the equation, which seems kind of simplistic. Thinking of 2 courses we play in our county system, one of them I may have only broken 90 once because it is longer but also the greens are much harder to land on (small, elevated) and there are a couple of holes with severely sloping fairways. What the ratings don't really take into account is the ability of a golfer to actually hit the ball where they need to, regardless of distance.

It's not how...it's how many

Aimee
Aimee's picture
Course ratings

Here are the ratings for the 3 courses I play regularly from the red tees.

Mercer Oaks East (links style, more bunkers) 68.9/120/5212 yds

Mercer Oaks West (parkland style, some water) 71.2/122/5334 yds

Mountainview (parkland style, some water, small greens) 71.5/125/5376 yds

By those numbers, you' think that I should be able to score close to what I do at West at MtV, but I don't. The course plays much harder and other people we play with have found the same. I do usually score a couple of strokes better on East than West because it is shorter plus the hazards are FW bunkers, which I generally can avoid because I hit the ball straight.

 

It's not how...it's how many

Scott Rushing
Scott Rushing's picture
yeah, I'm sure there are

yeah, I'm sure there are things I don't understand about how the rating is calculated but to me, the amount and significance of the trouble a wayward shot can find should be valued as high - if not higher - than distance is.  I might do some more digging into that process to see what I can find on it.

 

 

Golf is a game that can only be played...

GolfGearReview.com Administrator

Aimee
Aimee's picture
USGA

found this on the USGA web site:

Accuracy and consistency are the keys to effective course rating. A course must first be accurately measured. The measured yardage must then be corrected for the effective playing length. These effective playing length corrections are roll, elevation, dogleg/forced lay-up, prevailing wind, and altitude. Obstacles that affect playing difficulty must then be evaluated in accordance with established standards. These standards increase objectivity in course rating.

 

So it seems that the course CONDITIONS are taken into consideration in the rating.

It's not how...it's how many