In November we provided a summary of the changes that CONGU (the body that runs handicapping in England) announced regarding, amongst other updates, the retirement of Club and Disability Handicaps and the creation of new Category 5 handicaps for men, as well as a new Category 6 handicap for both men and women. These new categories will provide for a maximum handicap of 54 for both men and women. These changes will become effective on January 1st 2018. Players will be able to maintain a Competition Handicap in all six categories. Upward adjustment for all categories will remain at 0.1 and downward adjustments for Net Differentials below Buffer Zones will be 0.5 for Category 5 and 0.6 for Category 6.

We currently have approximately 35 men at 28.0 handicap and 22 ladies at 36.0 handicap (we also have a small number of men and ladies already above these levels on club handicaps). The changes are mandatory and our system, Handicap Master, will be updated from 1st Jan 2018 to implement these changes. Therefore, from the 1st January as members play qualifying rounds handicaps will change and some may will increase to handicaps higher than 28.0 for men and 36.0 for ladies.

These changes are very significant and when we communicated at the beginning of November we said that the Club Committee will be considering how we implement the new requirements.

Having reviewed the CONGU changes the Club Committee has approved the following implementation approach put forward by the Competitions Committee:

Effective January 1st 2018

  1. All Knock Out competitions will be open to players off any CONGU handicap but they must play off a maximum of 28 (Men) and 36 (Ladies).
  2. Men’s Division 2 will be extended from its current 16.5 – 28.0, to 16.5 – 54.0.
  3. Ladies Division 3 will be extended from its current 28.5 – 36.0, to 28.5 – 54.0.
  4. Juniors must have a handicap of no greater than 28.0 (Boys) and no greater than 36.0 (Girls) to enter general competitions. This is designed to:
    1. Uphold the principles established by the Junior Academy to bring our juniors to club competition readiness by awarding hitherto club handicaps and closely monitoring all aspects of their progress before awarding juniors with their first competition handicaps.
  5. Competitions calendar will remain unaltered with Men’s Div. 2 and Ladies’ Div. 3 eligible competition entries being maintained as is.

These recommendations will be monitored closely during the winter months to determine what if any changes are needed before the summer season starts.

We believe that these modest changes will cause least disruption to our membership at large, whist ensuring compliance with the CONGU rule changes. As such we hope this way forward will meet with your approval. If you have any questions about the new handicapping changes please do not hesitate to contact our Handicap Committee via handicaps@windleshamgolf.com.