The USGA Rules of Golf will govern tournament play on the Nashville Golfweek Amateur Tour. Listed below are the Permanent Local Rules that supersede the USGA rules for all Nashville Golfweek Amateur Tour events.
Triple Bogey Max Rule
The maximum score that a player in A, B, C and D flights can score on a hole is triple bogey (Champ flight does not apply this local rule). If you are sitting at double bogey, and are not in the hole, pick up your ball and score a triple bogey. Do not continue to play the hole as the whole reason for this rule is to speed up pace of play. If you continue to play past double bogey, you are defeating the purpose, and may be assessed a 2 stroke penalty.
All Heavily Wooded Areas, Heather or Extreme Long Grass will be considered a Red Penalty Area
All Heavily Wooded areas, Heather or Extreme Long Grass areas will be considered a Red Penalty Area (only if known, or virtually certain that the ball has entered one of these areas, otherwise is considered a LOST BALL), but does NOT apply to first cut or second cut rough (normal rough). You may take relief from heavily wooded areas, heather and/or extremely long grass according to the Red Penalty Area rules. The proper drop location is determined just as it would be had the ball gone into a marked Red Penalty Area (think of the whole area of trees or heather as if it were a Penalty Area). The drop is where the ball first crossed into this area and is subject to the same regulations as a Red Penalty Area. The drop location is NOT perpendicular to where the ball lies or expected to be. This rule will be used for all flights, including Champ Flight.
Out of Bounds Rule
If you hit your ball Out of Bounds, and did not hit a provisional ball, you MUST drop within 2 club length of where you crossed into out of bounds under penalty of 2 STROKES (not just 1 stroke). You cannot take the fairway drop option, and you may not go back to the tee and rehit. This rule will apply to all flights, including Champ Flight.
One Ball Rule is NOT in Effect but DO mark your ball
The Nashville Tour will NOT use the one ball rule. You may use any ball on the USGA Approved Ball List, but it can not be x’ed out or marked as a range ball. You must identify the ball you are playing and the special markings on the first tee to your partners. Once it is put into play you must finish the hole or have lost it before you can put a different ball into play. If you do put a different ball into play (normally on the tee) then you must announce it to your playing partners.
Our National Championships and other Tours may use the One Ball Rule which is that each player must play the same make AND model ball for the duration of the whole round. Each player must uniquely mark each ball so that it can be certain of ownership. This includes that they must play the same color ball as well even if it is the same make and model. The USGA Approved Ball List lists each color as a separate line item in the list which means it is technically a different ball. The number on the ball may be different as long as it is the same make and model and color.
If a player does not mark their ball and it is lost during play, even if a ball is found that could presumably be theirs, they must still take penalty strokes for a lost ball. They have no way to positively identify their ball.
Embedded Ball Rule Anywhere in General Area
A ball embedded in its own pitch mark, anywhere in the General Area (this is the whole area of the course except: the teeing ground, putting green of the hole being played, out of bounds and all penalty areas-including sand traps), may be lifted, cleaned and dropped as close to the original spot, no nearer the hole, without penalty. This is a USGA rule.
New Member Probation Period of 2 Calculated Rounds
We do our very best to try to make sure that all new members are placed in the proper flight to begin with. This is not an exact science especially if the new member does not have an established USGA Index.
To make sure that we protect the field from new members not being placed in the proper flight, we are implementing the following rule.
All new members will only be allowed to win the bottom paying spot in any flight, other than Champ, for their first 2 Tournaments. In the event that a new member with less than 3 Tournaments scores plays and shoots a score that would place them in the prize money, they will automatically be moved to the bottom paying spot and all the other players will be moved up accordingly in the event that they are a member with more than 2 events played as well. The new member will be awarded the bottom place Prize Money and equivalent points for the tournament.
The likelihood that a new member that is in the proper flight would win their flight within the first 2 events is extremely low due to being new to tournament play. If a new member were to card a score that would win in a lower flight, after their index was calculated based on the winning score, they will most likely be moved up into the next flight anyway. This is why we are implementing this rule in order to handle this situation should it happen and there is now a clear cut rule to handle this.
This is not meant to punish new members but to protect the integrity of the flights and our tournaments from improper flight placement.
No Drop Zones Used for Any Event
No drop zones will be used by any player during any Nashville Golfweek Amateur Tour event except for Champ flight. They may use drop zones where available.
Because no drop zones are allowed at Nationals and because the Triple Bogey Max Rule is in effect then we will not use any drop zones during our events as well. Champ Flight does not have triple bogey max therefore can utilize drop zones for Nashville events.
Guest Policies for Placing in Tournaments
To be sure that we keep the full integrity of our flights in all of our tournaments, we are implementing a set of policies revolving around guests playing in our tournaments. Due to the high demand of our tournaments, with many selling out, guests are not allowed to join an event until the Monday of the week of the event. If there are still open spots, guests may join an event on that Monday.
As a guest, guests will not be allowed to place any higher than 3rd Place in any event for all flights with the exception of the Champ Flight. If a guest posts a score that is higher than 3rd place, they will be moved to 3rd place and those that were in 2nd and 3rd place will be moved up to 1st and 2nd place provided that they are not guests and have met the minimum 2 round rule for New Members.
Also, any prize money awarded to any guest for placing must be used towards the purchase of a membership or future event. Cash games are not included in this and cash games will be paid to the guest.
Play Ready Golf!
Ready Golf will be played at all of our events, and at all times, tee to green and on the green as well! If you are waiting on the group in front of you, then you may observe turn etiquette, otherwise there should be NO ONE waiting to hit - not on the tee, fairway, rough, hazards or greens. If you are ready, and it's clear, then go ahead and hit! Keep the play moving forward. Play should never be at a standstill. Even if waiting for the group ahead, there are things you can be doing to ensure you will be ready to hit when it is clear such as getting yardage, making club selection, etc...
Honors is exactly that, an honor and there is no rule about hitting rotation in Stroke Play. If the player with honors is not ready, and you are, please announce to that player that you are ready and you are going to hit. If you have the honors and are not ready, you must not get upset if someone wants to hit first if they are ready. If you are not ready, announce that you are not ready and invite anyone that is ready to hit to go ahead and hit. Do NOT use this rule as an excuse to make yourself 'not ready' so that you don't have to go first!
Pace of Play System in Live Score
In the Live Scoring System, there is a Pace of Play monitoring system. Your status is displayed on the top of the Main Scoring Page after you enter each score in. The time that you enter each score in is logged and compared to the group in front of you and is what is the determining factor on if you are on pace or behind pace. The system will understand how far behind the group in front of you that your group is and if you are an entire hole behind or more then you will be given warnings and possibly even penalty strokes if you do not catch up after a hole or 2. The system will display this very clearly.
Your job is to keep up with the group in front of you at all times. We understand that there are holes that you will fall behind but your job is to then catch up if you do fall behind.
This system is designed to be as fair as possible for everyone. There is no possibility of favoritism or excuses. Everyone will follow the exact same rules and time restrictions. We understand that there are always situations where your group can fall behind, but that is what the warning is for.
At the point of staying behind for 3 or more holes a group will be given a warning that they have been put on the clock. That warning may come across the LiveScore system directly from me or issued personally from me as I am marshalling on the course. The person in your group that is responsible for entering scores into LiveScore then has the responsibility of letting all the players in their group that they have been put on the clock.
If a group has been put on the clock they will then be monitored and if they do not close the gap within 2 holes everyone in the group will be issued a 2 stroke penalty. This may seem like a lot, but that means that said group has been behind for at least 6 holes (a third of their round), which means that every group behind them ended up playing a longer round than they should have also. Slow play affects EVERYONE and even PGA players are put on the clock if they are too far behind the group in front of them and assessed penalties if they do not catch up.
If you are worried that you may be unfairly penalized due to a particularly slow player in your group then make sure that player knows they are slow (believe it or not, some players are just that oblivious and some also know very well they are slow.) Keep everyone moving, including yourself. I will be tracking every single player that receives penalty strokes. We will be able to track trends of individuals. If a particular individual is tagged as a problem then that person can be addressed and asked to leave the tour if it needs to come to that.
Please let us know if you have any questions on this system or pace of play expectations.
GPS and Range Finders Permitted
Only USGA approved GPS and Range Finder devices are permitted for play. Use of illegal devices, such that measure slope, wind speed, etc..., will result in disqualification from the event.
Smartphone GPS apps that are used only to measure distance will be allowed during play, provided the user is not also using a compass, weather app, club suggestions, dynamic putting alignment or any other app/info that can be used as a benefit/advantage to the game. Any person caught using any of the additional functions other than distance measurements will be disqualified from that event. Apps may be used to keep score and stats for post round analysis.
Putt Out Instead of Marking
If you have a ball that is only a few feet away from the hole, do not mark the ball, but rather continue to putt out, provided this will not cause you to step in someone's line.
We have seen numerous players mark their balls when only a couple a foot away from the hole that could have been tapped in. This adds a significant amount of time to the round. On average, if marking and then coming back to finish were to add 30 seconds each time, and is done by 2 people on each green, this would add 18 extra minutes to the round for no good reason. Most of the time the return putt is not missed due to having to have to putt out, but rather using the time to think too much about it. Usually having more time to think about it causes more misses than putting out at the time. If you watch, the PGA players will usually finish the putt instead of marking.
Play 2 balls in event of a rules dispute
If there is ever any dispute among the group about a ruling, the player should play 2 balls from the point of the dispute. The player MUST announce to the other players which ball / rule they would prefer providing the ruling is made prior to taking a stroke at either of the 2 balls. Take note of both scores for that hole and move on with the round. After the round is done, and before signing the scorecard, seek out the Tour Director(s) for a final ruling. The proper score will be circled on the card and used for the official score.
There will only be 1 official score card per group. 1 player needs to keep score on the official scorecard provided and another player keep score in the LiveScore system throughout the round. Compare the LiveScore system and the scorecard to ensure the two match and then all players must sign and turn in the official card. The group may keep score on more than 1 card, but only the official scorecard should be signed and turned in. If there is a discrepancy between the official scorecard and the LiveScore then the official scorecard score will be used and can not be contested (unless it is the wrong score - then the player will be DQ’ed based on attesting a wrong score). Please make sure when the group is confirming the scorecard and LiveScore that all players in the group follow along to verify all scores are accurate before signing the paper scorecard.
Optional Cash games
At each event, players may enter into the optional CASH games. Games MUST be entered with cash (or equivalent - Venmo or CashApp) as the money gets paid to the winners in cash (or equivalent) either the same day or within 24 hours.
Players can pay $5 to get into the closest to the pin contest for the par 3's for that day. $1 of every entry goes into the hole-in-one pot and a player will receive minimally $500 for a hole-in-one. Only players that get into the Closest to the Pin game for that day are eligible for the hole-in-one prize, otherwise the hole-in-one winner will only receive $100.
Players can also pay $15 for their respective flight skins. Outright low score on a hole, among the players in the skins game, will win their share of the flight skins pot. It is birdie or better to win flight skins in Champ, A and B flights. C and D flights are par or better. Flights may be combined based on the number of players in each flight for the event.
Players can enter the super skins game for $10. These players compete against all the flights and players that entered super skins. Outright low score on a hole, among the players in the super skins game, will win their share of the super skins pot. All super skins are birdie or better.
Players may choose to play the Points game. The points game is $10. The points game has 2 parts. The first part is $5 per player to each flight. Points are calculated by gaining or losing points based on your per hole score. The point system used is a modified Stableford system. The players AGT or handicap also factors into the game because players will be given their equivalent number of points based on their handicap. The second part of the game will be a random draw partnership (across all flights) with both players points being totalled for a score.
Finally, we offer a 50/50 Raffle for $10. Half of the pot goes to a player selected at random using a random number draw online app. The other half of the pot is collected for a yearly donation to the charity of our choice - Currently our charity of choice Stand Up to Cancer.
Any player can enter in as many, as few, or none of these events as they wish. In the case of a 2 day event, players must enter the games each day. 1st day entries go towards day 1 results and 2nd day entries go towards day 2 results.