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ELITE GOLF SOLUTIONS
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FAQ's - Handicapping

Handicapping

Q Why should I take one of your golf handicap certificates?
Q Are your handicap certificates official?
Q Will I be able to play golf courses in the UK and abroad with your handicap certificates?
Q How do I use your website for calculating my handicap?
Q How do I apply for my handicap certificate?
Q Do you supply handicap certificates for junior golfers?
Q What does the SSS on the scorecard mean?
Q How is my initial handicap calculated?
Q How is my handicap adjusted ongoing i.e. when I enter new rounds?
Q How long will it take to receive my handicap certificate?
Q Can I have my handicap certificate delivered by Royal Mail (next day) Special Delivery?
Q I do not live in the UK so can I still request a handicap certificate?
Q How many handicap certificates have you issued and have any of your members ever been refused to play?
Q How many cards do I need to submit and how old can they be?
Q Do you need to see my scorecards and, if so, how do I send them to you?
Q Which tee colour do I need to use for submitting scorecards?
Q When entering my scorecards for my initial handicap should I enter them as Strokeplay or Stableford?
Q I have entered 3 scorecards but your website won't calculate my handicap, why not?
Q I have several scorecards entered on your website but some of them are 'Not Available for adjustment', what's wrong?
Q How will I know if my handicap has changed.
Q How do I renew/update my handicap certificate?
Q Can I use your handicap to play in competitions?
Q Can you supply handicap certificates to lady golfers?
  

Handicapping

Q Why should I take one of your golf handicap certificates?
A

No doubt you will have found other sites that offer to provide handicap certificates but most of them will not provide you with a personalised handicap issued by themselves, many of them ask you to print off your own handicap certificate, and don't validate your scorecards. If you print off your own handicap certificate on paper then this has very little credibility as anyone can do this, and golf clubs know it! The reason to choose our handicap certificates is simple..... we are UK registered company and have been trading for 3 years and during that time we have issued 3,000 handicap certificates to our members. From the data that we collect from our regular customer surveys we know that we have a 98% referral rate which is testament to the quality of the service that we provide. Quite simply, we provide a fantastic service at a very reasonable price.
  

Q Are your handicap certificates official?
A We would be within our rights to say that our handicap certificates are 'official' but we believe that would be misleading as typically 'official' golf handicaps are deemed as those supplied by golf clubs to their members. Our golf handicap certificates are the next best thing that you can have to an official handicap. We frequently do customer surveys and from the feedback we receive we know that none of our members have ever been refused to play, which is why we can confidently state that our handicap certificates are accepted worldwide as proof of your playing ability. If you're looking to play golf whilst on holiday or travelling on business, rest assured that our handicap certificates will enable you play, without question.
  
Q Will I be able to play golf courses in the UK and abroad with your handicap certificates?
A

Yes, without question, approximately 60% of our members request handicaps to play golf in Spain and Portugal. As our handicaps are controlled and issued in a professional way golf clubs do recognise them and accept them. Whichever course you wish to play on, you will not be turned away. All of the top courses in Spain and Portugal accept them, this is where most of our members play. The only exception to this is St Andrews Old Course as they wish to keep this a members only course, however, they do accept them for their other courses there.

Some examples of courses where our handicap certificates are accepted are:

  • Spain - La Manga, costa adeje (Tenerife), Mojacar, Valle de este Vera, Costa Teguise GCC (Lanzerote), PGA Catalunya, Montecastillo
  • Portugal - Vale do Lobo (all courses), Villamoura (all courses), Le Meridien Penina,La Manga, Salgados
  • France - Le Golf National, Guyancourt, St Seine, Le Touquet,
  • UK - Wentworth, Royal Troon, St. Andrews, Gleneagles, Woburn, St Pierre,
  • Others - Agadir, Morocco, Dubai - Emirates Golf Club, Laguna (Singapore), Hammamet (Tunisia), Frankfurter Club (Germany)

This list is not exhaustive but merely an example of some top clubs that readily accept our handicap certificates. We have issued over 1,400 in the past 12 months and have never had a member being refused to play with our handicap certificates. Our handicap certificates are recognised and accepted at all clubs throughout Europe.
  

Q How do I use your website for calculating my handicap?
A Once you have registered/logged in the card entry and handicapping facilities can be found under the Handicap Management menu bar on the left-hand side of the website. To calculate your handicap you need to enter 3 scorecards (less than 3 months old) then click on 'Calculate/Apply New Handicap' under Handicap Management on the LHS menu bar.
  
Q How do I apply for my handicap certificate?
A Once you have subscribed to handicap service you will see a 'request handicap' link on your Handicap Record page as well as in the Handicap Management menu bar. You do not need to enter your scorecards on the system in order to request your handicap you can, if you prefer, send your scorecards to us to calculate your handicap.
  
Q Do you supply handicap certificates for junior golfers?
A Yes, we can issue handicap certificates for juniors up to a maximum of 54.0. These cannot be entered on to our system but we will happily calculate their handicaps and maintain them ongoing. If you require this service then please contact us on 0845 64 2524 or email us at enquiries@elitegolfsolutions.co.uk
  
Q What does the SSS on the scorecard mean?
A The Standard Scratch Score is the score which a scratch (zero handicap) player is expected to return in ideal conditions over a measured course. In the case of a 9 hole course it represents two rounds. In effect the SSS indicates the difficulty of the course as compared to its Par, for example a course with a Par of 70 and an SSS of 67 indicates that the course is three shots easier than its Par or, its SSS was 72 then it would be two shots more difficult.
  
Q How is my initial handicap calculated?
A

To calculate your first (initial) golf handicap you need to submit three completed golf scorecards. These three cards are assessed to determine which one will provide the best (lowest) Nett Differential Score; essentially this is done by reducing any holes (to a maximum of 3 shots) that are greater than 2 shots over par to being 2 shots over par. For example, if you have entered an 8 on a par 5 then, for the sake of this calculation, our system will read it as a 7.

Lets assume that one of the scorecards has 5 holes that are greater than a double-bogey. This would result in 3 shots being deducted from the gross score. If your gross score was 95, then the resulting adjusted score would now be 92. To calculate the Nett Differential based on this card, the course SSS (Standard Scratch Score) is then subtracted from the adjusted gross score. For example, if the SSS (for the tee colour in question) is 67, then it would be 92 - 67 = 25. This calculation is applied to all 3 cards to determine which one gives the lowest Nett Differential. This then becomes your golf handicap. Please note that ladies' scores that are greater than 3 over par are reduced to 3 over par.

Note: Initial handicaps set by our system are subject to alteration based on human assessment where it is determined that the handicap applied may be too high or too low for the player.
  

Q How is my handicap adjusted ongoing i.e. when I enter new rounds?
A

Golf handicaps are divided into 5 categories as shown here, each of these categories has a respective buffer zone that is used to assess whether or not a handicap should change. The table below displays the handicap categories along with their related Buffer Zone and Adjustment Factors.

Cat 1 Handicaps of 5 or less Buffer = 0 to 1 shot Adjust factor = 0.1
Cat 2 Handicaps of 6 to 12 incl. Buffer = 0 to 2 shots Adjust factor = 0.2
Cat 3 Handicaps of 13 to 20 incl. Buffer = 0 to 3 shots Adjust factor = 0.3
Cat 4 Handicaps of 21 to 28 incl. Buffer = 0 to 4 shots Adjust factor = 0.4
Cat 5 Handicap of 29 to 36 incl. Buffer = 0 to 5 shots Adjust factor = 0.5

Each time you enter a new card into our system you can use it to adjust your golf handicap. Depending on which category you fall in to, a buffer zone and respective adjustment factor is applied, essentially this allows you to enter cards that are higher than your handicap without your handicap being increased. To demonstrate how this works, please study the two examples shown below.

Examples of adjustments:

Lets assume that your golf handicap is 17.0 (Cat 3) and the card that you entered was with a gross score of 87 and the SSS for the tee colour is 67, in this case your net score would be 3 shots (87 – 67 = 20) above your handicap . As your Buffer Zone allows you to be Between 0 and 3 Shots above your handicap (17 + 3) then no adjustment is made. If your gross score was 89 resulting In your net score being 2 shots higher than your Buffer Zone, then your handicap would increase by 0.1, which is the maximum increase allowed. However, if your gross score was 82 with course SSS of 67 resulting in your nett score being 2 shots below your handicap (82 – 67 = 15) Then your are below the Buffer Zone of zero so an adjustment is required. The adjustment would be the number of shots Below handicap x the Adjustment Factor i.e. 2 x 0.3 resulting in a cut of 0.6 shots. Your new Exact Handicap would now be 17.0 – 0.6 = 16.4 giving you a Playing Handicap of 16.
  

Q How long will it take to receive my handicap certificate?
A We normally dispatch handicap certificates within 48 hours of receipt of scorecards, but can do them the same day if your requirement is very urgent. We can also fax/email a letter of confirmation to take with you if there's not enough time to receive your handicap by post.
  
Q Can I have my handicap certificate delivered by Royal Mail (next day) Special Delivery?
A

Yes, in urgent cases we are happy to do this but we do need to have scorecards etc. delivered to us by 1pm for guaranteed next day delivery. The cost for this is:

  • £5.95 for delivery before Midday
  • £9.95 for delivery before 9am. please note that in both cases a handling charge has been added.

If you require this service then please call 01306 646477 or email sales@elitegolfsolutions.co.uk to request it.
  

Q I do not live in the UK so can I still request a handicap certificate?
A Yes, of course. Although most of our members are based in UK we do have numerous customers in Germany, The Netherlands, Africa, Singapore, Spain, Portugal, Belgium, etc.
  
Q How many handicap certificates have you issued and have any of your members ever been refused to play?
A Our first handicaps were issued in July 2003 and in the past 12 months we have issued more than 1,400 handicap certificates. We have never heard of any of our members being refused, and do not expect to either.
  
Q How many cards do I need to submit and how old can they be?
A You need to submit at least 3 scorecards which you can enter on the system or you can fax/post/email to us to calculate your handicap. If you are entering them on the system then they need to be less than 3 months old otherwise our system will not use them for calculating your initial handicap. If you have cards older than this then you can send them to us to use for your handicap calculation.
  
Q Do you need to see my scorecards and, if so, how do I send them to you?
A Before we can issue a handicap certificate we do need to see your scorecards so that we can validate your handicap. If your handicap is 12 or above then you can fax or email your scorecards to us, if it's less than 12 then we like to receive your original scorecards by post; if your requirement is urgent then we may accept them by fax/email, if requested.
  
Q Which tee colour do I need to use for submitting scorecards?
A It doesn't matter what tee colour is used as the SSS is used to calculate handicaps, each tee colour has its own SSS value to differentiate the difficulty of the course. Ladies should use Red tees and Juniors should use Red, though Yellow tees would be appropriate if their approximate handicap is less than 36.0
  
Q When entering my scorecards for my initial handicap should I enter them as Strokeplay or Stableford?
A It's preferable that you enter them as Strokeplay but not essential. If you have played any of your rounds as Stableford and have some some holes recorded with no score then you'd simply enter the scores for these holes in the system as 'NR'. Our system will still accurately calculate your initial handicap based on these cards. Please ensure that when entering Stableford rounds that you only enter the actual strokes recorded at each hole, our system will calculate the Stableford points for you.
  
Q I have entered 3 scorecards but your website won't calculate my handicap, why not?
A There are two main reasons for this, firstly, if any of your 3 cards are greater than 3 months old our system will not calculate your handicap, but we are willing to receive them so that we can calculate it manually for you. Secondly, if a players handicap is going to be greater than 28.0 then we can assign it as 28.0 providing two conditions have been met, they are: that no more than 6 holes have been adjusted (see How is my initial handicap calculated) and, after this adjustment, the Nett Differential is 36.0 (42.0 for ladies) or less. Golf clubs do not put a limit on this, we do it to ensure that we do not supply handicaps to players who are not able to play close to 28.0, or 36.0 for ladies.
  
Q I have several scorecards entered on your website but some of them are 'Not Available for adjustment', what's wrong?
A Scorecards should be used in chronological order when adjusting your handicap unless, of course, there are cards that you wish not to adjust your handicap. If you have several scorecards that are available for use then you select one of the more recent cards to adjust your handicap the system will automatically lock out cards with older dates. This rule is applied to prevent 'handicap preservation' from being applied. If you have inadvertently locked out some scorecards by selecting a more recent one then please email us at support@elitegolfsolutions.co.uk and let us know which card(s) you'd like to have 'unlocked'.
  
Q How will I know if my handicap has changed.
A Each time you play a round of golf you can enter your new cards on our website and have it work out your handicap change, if any. As our system only does handicaps up to 28.0 we will happily receive scorecards, ongoing, from lady members so that we can check if there is any change, also, we can provide a simple piece of Excel based software that ladies, with handicaps above 28.0, can use to enter scores from rounds to see if their handicap has changed.
  
Q How do I renew/update my handicap certificate?
A

If you're handicap has changed during your membership year then it will be necessary for you to send your current handicap certificate to us along with the relevant scorecards i.e. cards entered that have increased or decreased your handicap - if you're not sure which ones then please email us and we'll confirm which ones.

If you have just renewed your membership then you will need to request a new handicap certificate using the 'Request Handicap Certificate' link found on your Handicap Record page. If your handicap has changed then we will need you to send the relevant scorecards to us.
  

Q Can I use your handicap to play in competitions?
A In most circumstances you can, with the exception of Golf Club Open competitions were we would advise members to check with the relevant clubs first. Typically these events are subsidised and therefore only for club members. If you wish to play in Corporate Games, Pro-Am, Charity Events or Society Competitions then it is acceptable for these.
  
Q Can you supply handicap certificates to lady golfers?
A Yes, we can supply handicap certificates to ladies, the maximum being 36.0 If our system will not allot your initial handicap then we will manually calculate it for you. If it fails we receive an automated email and will get back to you, normally with 2 hours during weekdays.
  
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