On November 2nd, the World Handicap System (WHS) will come into effect in Ireland alongside the other Home Unions of England, Scotland and Wales.
While the previous CONGU Handicapping System was an incremental one, the WHS is an averaging system based using the best 8 of the last 20 scores on your record.
This new system will provide maximum enjoyment for all by enabling all golfers, from anywhere in the world, to play and compete with others on a fair basis.
At this point, all handicap records are in the process of being transferred to the new WHS system, which will replace Golfnet. Here are some things you will need to consider in preparation for the new system.
Do I need to do anything to transfer my handicap to the new WHS?
No, your handicap records will be automatically transferred and your club has been given access to the WHS platform in advance.
As the site comes online, which is likely to be during the afternoon or early evening on 2nd November, you will be able to create a new WHS system account. You will do this using your eight-digit CDH number and 4-digit PIN, both of which are printed on the rear of your GUI/ILGU Member Card. This will allow you to view your handicap index and further details of where to create this account will be shared on November 2nd.
If your PIN is missing from the back of your card, you can look it up on Golfnet or ask your Handicap Secretary to get it for you from Golfnet.
If you have lost your card then your club must order a new card for you.
What if my handicap has changed significantly?
It is likely that your handicap index will change from your current CONGU handicap. This change is not an exact science as the data from an old system (CONGU) has been used to calculate new WHS Indices. While this has been done as accurately as possible, there will be some anomalies.
The Handicap Index you view on November 2nd will fluctuate as you begin to submit eligible scores under the new system.
However, if you feel that your handicap index is significantly inaccurate there is a recommended process to follow:
Members should first address their query to their Handicap Secretary/Committee.
Your club knows you and your playing ability. In the vast majority of cases your club will be able to make an adjustment to your Handicap Index and resolve the situation for you quickly. It must also be noted that this transition has been a huge effort for your club Handicap Secretary/Committee, all of whom are volunteers. We ask that you consider this workload when asking for your query to be addressed.
If the Handicap Secretary/Committee cannot answer the query, the Handicap Secretary should forward it to the ILGU Handicap Advisor or GUI Handicapping Convenor/Branch Office.
If the Handicap Advisor/Convenor/Branch cannot answer the query it should be forwarded to email@example.com for the attention of the National Handicap Committee.
If necessary, Golf Ireland will refer the query to the WHS Committee.
The process of accurately assigning scores to courses/tees has been challenging. Scores from the old system were never linked with a course/set of tees. So, we’ve had to apply a set of rules to try to map scores to courses in the new system. Whilst this process has worked for the vast majority of scores, there are some scores that have been assigned to courses/tees other than those played on the day. In cases where this has a material effect on the calculation of the WHS Index, we’re working with your Handicapping Committee to apply a fix. Please bear with us over the coming weeks, while we complete this process.
How do I use my new WHS Handicap Index?
Golf Ireland have provided Course & Slope Rating tables to all golf clubs. These tables should be positioned in clear locations around the club making it simple for golfers to find prior to beginning their round.
You simply have to choose the tees you are playing off that day and cross reference your Handicap Index on the Course & Slope Rating table to ascertain your Course Handicap. Different tees on the same course could have varying slope ratings. Your Course Handicap determines the number of strokes you give or receive off the tee set you intend to play from.
Then, depending on the format you are playing (singles, fourball etc.) you will apply a handicap allowance to your course handicap which will present you with your playing handicap.
For example: The recommended handicap allowance for individual stroke play events is 95% which means a player could have a course handicap of 15 but a playing handicap of 14.
More information on the World Handicap System can be found at www.golfnet.ie/whs