Handicap Policy - Updated 16 November 2022

IPGC Handicap Policy

This policy is the responsibility of and administered by the IPGC Handicap Sub-Committee which shall be comprised of a minimum of 3 persons. It is administered on a weekly basis by the IPGC Handicapper, Craig Hitchens of PFGS. Currently the Handicap Sub-Committee consists of David Edwards, Chairman, Craig Hitchens and Bob Poole.

Handicap changes will be made weekly, not after every competition but taking into account multiple rounds played during the previous week on a cumulative basis with such changes generally being available for review on Saturdays.
IPGC uses the World Handicap System (WHS) which replaced the previous CONGU system following its withdrawal from use in the UK and Ireland in November 2020. That system is however be adjusted to reflect the fact that IPGC members are a mixture of Pattaya residents, long term stayers and holiday makers and also that the official WHS certified handicap system is not made available to any golfing societies.

  1. New Members.
  2. Multiple Handicaps.
  3. Handicap Review.
  4. Silver Tees.
    1. Silver Tee Eligibility.
    2. Initial Silver Tee Handicap.
  5. IPGC Championship.

Appendix 1) Covid transitional arrangements

Appendix 2) Playing Condition Calculation (PCC)

1) New Members:

When first joining the IPGC, members are asked to produce evidence of their official WHS club handicap and most recent playing record from their home club by providing a link to their electronic handicap card and playing record or failing that a hard copy of both. If not shown on the playing record please also include the individual slope and course ratings. This will be used to determine the member’s IPGC handicap.

IPGC societies will accept PSC/ Birdie handicaps from golfers who become IPGC members. The prospective member must provide access to their current PSC/ Birdie handicap record and their playing record prior to their first competitive game. The Golf Organiser (or his designate) and a low handicap member of that society should play the first 2 rounds with the new member and provide feedback to assist the Handicap Sub-Committee after which point an IPGC handicap will be allocated by them at its discretion.

For the avoidance of doubt this may be different to their PSC/ Birdie handicap since such handicaps may include recreational scores and also because the IPGC slope/ course ratings are different which will result in different calculations.

If a prospective member does not have a valid WHS handicap or a PSC/ Birdie handicap, he/she will be asked to submit three cards for handicap calculation. The Golf Organiser (or his designate) and a low handicap member of that society must play at least 2 of those rounds with such new member. A handicap will then be calculated in accordance with the relevant provisions of WHS and taking into account any additional assessments made by the Golf Organiser/ designate and existing low handicap member.

This handicap will be subject to continuous review over the following six rounds played with changes made at any time (i.e. not weekly) at the discretion of the Handicap Sub Committee. Thereafter a member's handicap will be adjusted after having played in a qualifying competition that appears on the official IPGC Monthly Schedule.

2) Multiple Handicaps

Any member who lives or plans to stay in Pattaya for more than 3 months (not necessarily in one trip) in any rolling 12 month period will be deemed to have a home course of Pattaya and thus the member's IPGC handicap will be their valid handicap. Any other WHS handicap from another jurisdiction will be deemed an “Away” handicap and will have no bearing on their IPGC handicap unless otherwise stated in this policy.

For members who are not deemed to have a home course of Pattaya they are required to provide by email a copy of their current home club WHS handicap and recent playing record to their Golf Organiser prior to each visit to Pattaya. Such evidence should promptly be forwarded by the Golf Organiser to the Handicap Sub-Committee who will consider whether any adjustment to the member's IPGC handicap is warranted.

In cases where the member's current home WHS handicap is lower than their IPGC handicap their IPGC handicap will automatically be adjusted downwards to their home handicap.

In cases where the member's current home club WHS handicap is higher than their IPGC handicap their IPGC handicap may be adjusted upwards at the discretion of the Handicap Sub-Committee subject however to a maximum handicap increase as follows: -

Handicap 0-5          1 shot

Handicap 6-12        2 shots  

Handicap 13-20      3 shots

Handicap 21+         4 shots

Any other rounds submitted by a member at their discretion, for downward revision only, will be considered by the Handicap Sub-Committee.

3) Handicap Review

Should a member suffer any long-term injury or illness which they consider adversely affects their ability to play to their existing handicap, they may apply to the Handicap Sub-Committee, via their Golf Organiser, to have their situation reviewed in accordance with the WHS.

4) Silver Tees

Silver tees were originally introduced as part of the Tee It Forward campaign conceived by the USGA and PGA of America to enable golfers of advancing years to remain competitive and to enjoy their golf.

4.a Eligibility.

Applications will be considered from golfers aged 65 years and over, with an existing IPGC handicap index of 28.0 or greater.

Applications should be submitted to the relevant Golf Organiser. The Golf Organiser (or his designate) and a low handicap member of that society must play at least 2 rounds with the golfer seeking Silver tee status to determine their initial suitability for such status. The premise of playing competition golf with IPGC is that all male golfers should play off the tees of the days allotted by the Golf Organiser. As such, applications for Silver tee status should only be accepted in exceptional circumstances where physically the golfer cannot reasonably be expected to play off any tees other than the Silver tees irrespective of what handicap is allotted. If a Golf Organiser is satisfied that such criterion has been met, then such application should be forwarded to the Handicap Sub-Committee for approval who will advise all Golf Organisers by email whenever applications are approved or indeed declined.

Once approved, the golfer will be issued with a silver tee handicap as outlined below. This will replace his regular tee handicap. Once a golfer has switched to the silver tees, all future IPGC competition rounds must be played from those tees.

If there are no silver tees at a course, then a player should play from 2 yards behind the red tee boxes.

4.b Initial Silver Tee Handicap

Golfers wishing to be considered for a silver tee handicap will, after their application has been approved, have their existing men’s tee handicap adjusted as the Handicap Sub- Committee may think appropriate.

5) IPGC Championship

Golfers playing from silver tees will be eligible to enter the IPGC Club Championship or any IPGC Combined Competitions but must play in their own separate Silver tees/ Ladies tees division irrespective of the numbers that may enter.  They will be eligible for their divisional prize, but not the overall best net prize.

New members joining the IPGC with a PSC / Birdie Silver tees Handicap will be welcomed in the same way we currently accept new members provided they are aged 65 and over. The Golf Organiser (or his designate) and a low handicap member of that society must play at least 2 rounds with such member seeking silver tee status to determine their suitability.

 Appendix 1: COVID related transitional arrangements.

It is recognised that many IPGC golfers who are club members in their own country will have played all of their golf in their home country since the introduction of the  WHS due to the COVID pandemic. As such their IPGC handicap will potentially be significantly out of date. All Away members must before their next visit to Thailand submit their official home club WHS handicap playing record and handicap certificate to the Handicap Committee so their IPGC handicap can be adjusted to reflect their current home club WHS handicap. If not shown on the playing record please also include the individual slope and course ratings. All home club scores that would impact their WHS handicap (ie that are in their last 20 competitive rounds by date played) will be added to their IPGC playing record.

All such submissions should be made at least 1 week before their next scheduled IPGC competition round to allow time for their scores to be inputted.

We have set up a dedicated email – please email us at ipgchandicaps@gmail.com and we will come back to you by email.

Appendix 2. Playing Condition Calculation (PCC).

The PCC is equivalent to the Competition Standard Scratch (CSS) under CONGU. This cannot be incorporated officially into our IPGC WHS handicap system as the calculation methodology is not disclosed by the world golfing bodies. The PCC is expected to provide for far less frequent adjustments than previously applied under CONGU’s CSS adjustments however it is considered important that we still reflect the PCC for two main reasons: -

1) Size of field in IPGC competitions is lower than typical fields in a golf club which is likely to lead to more erratic scoring; and

2) Weather/ course conditions in Thailand

The Handicap Sub-Committee will reflect that by setting parameters such that in IPGC competitions (subject to a minimum of 10 players) where no golfer scores 33 points or better will be deemed to be subject to a PCC adjustment.

In such cases the Handicap Sub-Committee Handicap will consider on a case-by-case basis the overall level of scores from that competition and will either: -

1) Increase all Stableford points scores by up to 3 points or reduce all Medal scores by up to 3 shots (as applicable) before inputting the revised scores (ie akin to increasing the CSS by three shots being the maximum upward adjustment under CONGU), or

2) Determine at its discretion that results were so “abnormal” due to weather conditions and/ or a small field that no scores should be input for that competition, i.e. the equivalent of a Non Counting round under CONGU.

WHS Manual (Click here)