This month we reveal the results of our recent survey, where we asked you whether you would like to see more controls in the HNA Handicap system.
We also take a closer look at the small symbols that you might have noticed on the HNA Handicap System, indicating the activation of the World Handicap System’s Soft Cap, Hard Cap, Exceptional Score Adjustment or the Playing Conditions Calculation.
In the May 2020 newsletter, we asked you whether you would like to see HNA increase the controls in the Handicap System. The results indicated that the majority of respondents (55%) would prefer not to add further controls to the system. However, since a sizeable percentage of respondents (45%) do want more control, GolfRSA, HNA and the Clubs are working together to assist the Club Handicap Committees with reports that they can use to review the Handicap Indexes of their members and make informed decisions based on data supplied by HNA.
This will ensure that golfers who are suspected of manipulating their handicaps will be more closely scrutinised by their clubs in future and, where necessary, have their Handicap Indexes adjusted accordingly.
HNA Handicap System symbols
In the left-hand corner of the landing page of the HNA Handicap System App or website, you will note your Low Handicap Index. The Low HI is the lowest HI you have achieved in a 365-day rolling period. The Low HI is only determined after a player has submitted 20 scores and is used as the basis for determining the maximum that your HI can increase over a period of 365 days (this maximum is 5).
In order to slow down the rate of an HI increase, or to put a cap on the increase, there are two mechanisms used in the WHS system:
Soft Cap (S)
The Soft Cap is a mechanism that has been introduced to prevent a player’s Handicap Index from increasing too rapidly. Should the player submit a score that would see the his/her Handicap Index increase by more than three strokes above their Low HI, the Soft Cap will kick in – limiting the increase above 3 by 50%.
Hard Cap (H)
The Hard Cap is another mechanism that will limit by how much a player’s Handicap Index can increase. Kicking in after the application of the Soft Cap, the Hard Cap is an upper limit that prevents a player’s Handicap Index from increasing to more than five strokes greater than their Low Handicap Index.
It is important to note that there is no limit on the amount by which a player’s Handicap Index can decrease.
Exceptional Score (e)
When an exceptional score is posted to a player’s scoring record, the Handicap Index will be reduced in accordance with the following adjustment table:
Playing Conditions Calculation (PCC)
Course Ratings are based on normal playing conditions, but the difficulty of a golf course can vary substantially from day to day, due to:
- Course conditions
- Weather conditions and/or
- Course set-up
The Playing Conditions Calculation (PCC) determines whether playing conditions on the day differed from normal conditions to the extent that an adjustment is needed to compensate. It is a daily statistical procedure that compares the scores submitted by players on the day against expected scoring patterns.
The purpose of this feature within the handicap calculation is to recognise that an average score submitted in harder playing conditions may be better than a good score submitted in easier playing conditions. Unadjusted, such a score may either be omitted from the Handicap Index calculation or trigger an Exceptional Score or Soft/Hard Cap. The PCC will adjust the players’ score differential between -1, 0, 1, 2 and 3.
If the PCC determines that acceptable scores submitted are in line with expected scoring patterns, then no adjustment is made.
Summary of symbols on HNA Handicap System
Quote of the Month
“I learned one thing from jumping motorcycles that was of great value on the golf course, particularly on the putting green: Whatever you do, don’t come up short.” – Evel Knievel