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By The Players...For the Players


Handicaps & Tour Format

Tour Format


Each Local Chapter will create a schedule of events for earning Player of the Year points.  Scoring may be standard stroke play, match play, Stableford, team scoring, etc.  Format for non-points events may vary, including but not limited to Ryder Cup-style team events, fourball, foursomes, Stableford, Chicago, scramble, shamble, match play, etc.  Unless otherwise provided by the Tournament Committee, USGA rules for tournament play will apply.

Unless stated otherwise in the Conditions of Competition, Divisions 3, 4 and 5 will play with a triple-bogey max rule that requires competitors to pick up their ball and cease play upon reaching triple-bogey (including any penalty strokes) on any hole.  Competitors must not continue to play the hole beyond triple-bogey to keep pace of play moving along for the remainder of the field and the other competitors in their group.

Divisions 1 and 2 will not play with a max stroke rule.  Players in these Divisions must continue to play and count every stroke until the ball comes to rest in the bottom of the cup.

The Conditions of Competition provided by the Tournament Committee supersede any local rules that may be adopted by the Host Facility.

Tour Index & Division Policy


New Members will initially be placed in a Division based on their current USGA-approved handicap.  If a new Member does not have a valid USGA-approved index, the Tour may consider an acceptable tournament index from a reputable amateur golf entity with at least ten posted rounds within the previous twelve-month period.  If a new Member does not have a current USGA-approved handicap or acceptable tournament index from a similar golf entity, the player may provide references from the PGA Professional or other Director of Golf at their home club.  If they do not have a home club or other reliable reference to offer, the Local Chapter Owner will have the discretion to place the Member in the division they deem appropriate.  If a new Member posts a score more than four (4) strokes below the limit of their Division prior to obtaining a validated Tour Index, the Local Chapter Owner or Event Host will have the option to disqualify the New Member from the event.  A Member’s Tour Index will be validated after posting their eighth (8th) gross tournament score.

The Tour Index is NOT equivalent to a USGA GHIN handicap.  The Tour Index is calculated using Tour Event scores only for the sole purpose of promoting fair competition.  The Tour Index has been designed to divide Members into groups of relatively equally skilled competitors.  These divisions create fair competition among competitors within each division using gross scoring.  The Tour Index will be calculated and adjusted based on the 11 most recent Tour Event scores, carried over from year to year, with each Tour Event score being adjusted for Course Index differential based on the USGA formula.  The following table will be used to determine Tour Index:


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Tour Divisions


Division 1: 3.4 and below

Division 2: 3.5 to 8.4

Division 3: 8.5 to 13.4

Division 4: 13.5 to 18.4

Division 5: 18.5 and above

Division Movement


Player advancing to higher division:


When a Member’s Tour Index drops below their current division limit, the Member will be automatically promoted to the higher division.  Upon promotion to a higher division, a Member will retain 80% of their current season points total OR be placed in a tie for 5th place in the new division whichever is lower.

Player falling to a lower division:


When a Member’s Tour Index rises at least one full stroke above their current Division limit, the Member may elect to drop to the lower division.  A move to a lower division will NOT be made automatically.  The Member MUST submit a written request to the Local Chapter Owner to move down a Division.  The Local Chapter Owner will recommend the move to the Tour Leadership Team.  Upon voluntary demotion to a lower Division, a Member will retain 100% of their current season points total OR be placed in a tie for 5th place in the new Division whichever is lower.

Cut off for Division Movement:


Division movement will continue throughout the season.  However, Division placement for the North American Championship will be determined based upon each Member’s Validated Tour Index as of August 1st.  If a Member’s Tour Index is not validated on or before August 1st, Division movement will remain possible until said Tour Index is validated.

If a Member’s Tour Index drops at least one full stroke below their Division limit between August 1st and the North American Championship the Member will be automatically promoted to the higher Division for the North American Championship.  Members may not move down after August 1st, and only then if their Tour Index rises at least one full stroke above their current Division limit.

The Tour adopts this policy to encourage Members to freely pursue their Local Final Championship and Playoff Race wins without fear of Division movement immediately prior to the North American Championship.

Tour Index Validation


A Member’s Tour Index shall be validated upon posting eight (8) Tour Event scores.  Until a Member’s Tour Index is validated, they will not be permitted to voluntarily move down a division.  The Tour shall have the discretion to move a Member up or down a division until their Tour Index is validated based upon the recommendation of the Local Chapter Owner.

Battlefield Promotion


In the interest of protecting the integrity of the field, the Tournament Committee shall have the discretion to instantly promote a Member to a higher division during a Tour Event if a Member posts a single round score that is:

  • More than five (5) strokes below their Division cut off (based on adjustment for course slope and rating); AND
  • More than three (3) strokes below their closest competitor within the division; IF
  • The Member played from the same tees as the higher Division.

The decision to shall be solely at the discretion of the Tournament Committee taking into consideration their personal knowledge of the Member’s scoring history, playing ability, the conditions of play, slope and rating, and any other factor the Tournament Committee may deem relevant.

Disqualification


In the interest of protecting the integrity of the field, the Tournament Committee may choose to disqualify a Member who meets the criteria for a Battlefield Promotion when the Member did not play from the same set of tees as the higher Division.  The decision shall be solely at the discretion of the Tournament Committee taking into consideration their personal knowledge of the Member’s scoring history, playing ability, the conditions of play, slope and rating, and any other factor the Tournament Committee may deem relevant.

In the event of a disqualification under these circumstances, the Tournament Committee should refund the portion of the Member’s entry fee that was dedicated to the prize pool and adjust the payouts accordingly.  The Tournament Committee shall have the discretion to refund or credit the Member any additional monies.

North American Championship


Competitors in The Amateur Players Tour North American Championship are expected to enter the championship and compete in their appropriate Division.  Event staff will review all scores after each round to determine if any abnormal scores have been posted.  An abnormal score shall be any single round score posted that is more than five (5) strokes below the Member’s Division cutoff (adjusted for course slope and rating).  The Tournament Committee will review the score in relation to the rest of the field, the conditions of play, the slope and rating, and consult with the Member’s Local Chapter Owner regarding the Member’s performance history.  If the Tournament Committee determines that the Member has misrepresented their skill level or otherwise entered the championship to compete in an inappropriate Division, the Tournament Committee may disqualify the Member from the championship.  Disqualified competitors may not be entitled to a refund of any tournament fees.