As from January 2024 there will be some changes to how the handicap is calculated for a competition.
The first change is rounding up. Previously the handicap was rounded up before the 95% competition reduction and rounded up again. This double round up has been eliminated and the 95% is calculated before any round up.
The second change is more significant and will affect your playing handicap allowance during competitions.
Currently we use the slope rating of the course to calculate playing handicap eg (slope rating /113) * handicap Index. From January we intend to use the course rating in the calculation as recommended by the England Golf. So that would be
(slope rating /113) * handicap Index + (course rating – standard par(72)). Therefore as most of our courses are rated below standard par it will act as an extra reduction on the handicap, indicating that it’s an easier course .
You may think that may be unfair but this is the method already used by the handicap system to calculate Score Differential which is used to calculate Handicap Index as below.
Handicap Index Calculation 101
Q. What is a Score Differential™ and how is it calculated?
A. A score of 80 on a difficult course may be a better performance than a 77 on an easier one, and it is the Score Differential calculation that allows this to be captured.
A Score Differential measures the performance of a round in relation to the relative difficulty of the course that was played, measured by the Course Rating™ and Slope Rating® . The result of the daily playing conditions calculation (PCC) is also included in the Score Differential calculation, which may provide an adjustment if course and/or weather conditions significantly impacted scores on that day.
A Score Differential is calculated using the following formula:
(113 / Slope Rating) x (Adjusted Gross Score – Course Rating – PCC adjustment)
There may be additional adjustments to the Score Differential, such as an exceptional score reduction or Committee-applied adjustment. These would be clearly identified within the scoring record.
So we are basically bringing the competition handicap in line with the Handicap index calculation.
This will stop the anomaly which many have noticed when although it seems like a player should have had an ESR his actual score differential when calculated reduced the amount he was under par. However, like most things in Thailand it is not all plain sailing as some courses have had rating guesses and not been properly evaluated (usually slope rating of 113). In these cases the committee will decide which adjustment is applicable and may refer back to just slope rating calculation on courses that are obviously wrongly rated.