Golf glossary: Scratch

The golf definition of “scratch” — here’s what we’re all itching to be.

image of woman scratching wallGottaGoGolf is partial to a scratch margarita, made without a mix, and generally prefers the meal created from scratch over the one purchased under arches. So it seems perfectly logical that to be a scratch golfer would taste sweet.

In common usage, the scratch golfer plays to a zero handicap or better. What’s better than zero? A plus-handicap, the kind PGA Tour players carry while expecting to break par easily on the course you play every day.

The USGA gets gender specific in its definition: “A male scratch golfer, for rating purposes, can hit tee shots an average of 250 yards and can reach a 470-yard hole in two shots at sea level. A female scratch golfer, for rating purposes, can hit tee shots an average of 210 yards and can reach a 400-yard hole in two shots at sea level.”

Sigh. Dream away.

One thing you don’t want to do: play scratch, without a handicap, in a money game against a scratch golfer. Take any strokes you can get.

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Play faster now with these 4 tips

Guidance editor Gail Rogers challenges golfers to make one small change and shave minutes off the time of their round. Yay, more time for the 19th hole!

Image of running golf ballAre you up for a challenge? Ask the group with whom you regularly play golf to evaluate you and then each other as to whether you are an average, slow or fast player.

Do you play efficiently? What is your weak area when it comes to pace of play for the group? Then remind them that you will all be friends at the end of the exercise and you hope you can each work on changing one aspect of your game during the month of October. Continue reading

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The dream golf course for women

It’s Fairsex Valley, the club where Chippendales carry our golf bags and we can always find a restroom. Kathie Dyson has a few other ideas worth considering.

No-Men ImageEver since women got the vote in 1920, there’s been very little a woman isn’t allowed to do. Except maybe donate to a sperm bank or join certain golf clubs.

The precise number of classic old-boy, blue-blood, men’s-only golf clubs in the U.S. seems to be a secret, because, well, they’re PRIVATE! A club that receives no taxpayer money or subsidies can select its company any way it wants. We know the lineage required to join the Daughters of the American Revolution, but it’s a mystery penetrating places like Burning Tree Club in Bethesda, Md.; Bob O’Link in Highland Park, Ill.; and the most famous course without a PGA Tour event, Pine Valley in Clementon, N.J.

Continue reading

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Introducing 10 new players for the 2015 LPGA

It’s time to meet the Symetra Tour’s top 10, who have secured their LPGA Tour cards for the 2015 season. Each will have full-time exempt status on the LPGA Tour in 2015.

Image of Symetra Top 10Half of the players will be LPGA Tour rookies next year – Marissa Steen, Sadena Parks, Min Lee, Wei-Ling Hsu and Kendall Dye. Here’s a little something about each of the 10, courtesy of the Symetra Tour: Continue reading

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A golf cartoon for golf elitists

Here’s a little something for Augusta National, the Royal & Ancient, and their friends. Cartoonist: Cathy Bowman, for GottaGoGolf Magazine.

Cartoon image

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No golf clap here for the R&A

Peter Dawson, secretary of the Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews, announced today that members have voted to open their ranks to women. Here’s the GottaGoGolf statement.

image of no women symbolI refuse to applaud the announcement today from the 2,400-member Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews, because it is at least 100 years too late to be patting anyone’s back for voting in favor of “welcoming women members.”

If such great women golfers as Babe Didrikson Zaharias, Glenna Collett Vare, Joyce Wethered, Louise Suggs and Mickey Wright would not be considered for membership in any club, why should the proud and accomplished women of today give it even a polite golf clap for it opening its doors at a desperate time when golf participation is plummeting and women continue to account for less than 20 percent of play? It should be ashamed, not congratulated.

Yes, I saw the Tweets. Continue reading

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What’s happening in women’s golf

A 19-year-old wins the LPGA’s last major of the year, and here’s USGA news on the last two amateur women’s championships of the season.

Here’s an ICYMI (in-case-you-missed-it) roundup of a big week in women’s golf.

LPGA’s Evian: Another teen triumph

image of Hyo Joo Kim

Hyo Joo Kim ( Stuart Franklin/Getty Images)

Karrie Webb had to like her chances with a 1-shot lead en route to the 18th hole on Sunday. In second place: 19-year-old Hyo Joo Kim, who had never won an LPGA event and was not even a member of the tour.

But Webb, 39, became unraveled after Kim stuck her approach 12 feet from the flag. The Hall of Famer missed the green, then bellied a wedge 10 feet past the flag. Now Kim drains her birdie putt and Webb does not make her 10-footer to force a playoff. Continue reading

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