Village of Pinehurst, N.C. (PRWEB) February 06, 2014
In a continuing effort to allow current technologies that enhance the player experience in competition while maintaining the spirit and challenge of the game, the United States Golf Association (USGA) has approved the use of distance-measuring devices (DMDs) in all USGA amateur championships and their respective qualifying events, beginning in 2014. The announcement was made by the Championship Committee of the USGA through its independent decision-making process scheduled during the Association’s Annual Meeting in the Village of Pinehurst, N.C., and reflects a joint decision with The R&A, which together with the USGA governs the game worldwide.
The use of distance-measuring devices has been covered by an optional Local Rule, which has been available under the Rules of Golf since 2006 (see Note to Rule 14-3 of the Rules of Golf), and the USGA Championship Committee’s vote adopts this optional Condition for all USGA amateur championships in 2014.
This Local Rule will be introduced for the USGA’s amateur events only. It will not apply to the U.S. Open, U.S. Women’s Open and U.S. Senior Open championships or their respective qualifying events.
The devices may be used in amateur championships to measure distance only, and may not be used to measure other conditions such as wind speed or direction, temperature or elevation.
“We have seen progressive developments in technologies available to golfers who seek to improve their playing performance and enjoyment that also maintain the essential elements of the game,” said Thomas J. O’Toole Jr., USGA vice president and chairman of the Championship Committee. “It is in this spirit that we are allowing the use of distance-measuring devices in our amateur competitions.”
The decision to allow the use of distance-measuring devices follows a recent study of such technologies during the 2013 USGA Women’s State Team and U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur championships as part of the Association’s broad initiative to identify the causes and solutions to slow play in the game. From the data collected at these championships, USGA researchers found no evidence that DMDs had a negative impact on pace of play and will continue to monitor the use of DMDs in the larger pool of amateur events to further study their effect on pace of play.
About the USGA
The USGA conducts the U.S. Open, U.S. Women’s Open and U.S. Senior Open, as well as 10 national amateur championships, two state team championships and international matches, attracting players and fans from more than 160 countries. Together with The R&A, the USGA governs the game worldwide, jointly administering the Rules of Golf, Rules of Amateur Status, equipment standards and World Amateur Golf Rankings. The USGA’s reach is global with a working jurisdiction in the United States, its territories and Mexico, serving more than 25 million golfers and actively engaging 150 golf associations.
The USGA is one of the world’s foremost authorities on research, development and support of sustainable golf course management practices. It serves as a primary steward for the game’s history and invests in the development of the game through the delivery of its services and its ongoing “For the Good of the Game” grants program. Additionally, the USGA’s Course Rating and Handicap systems are used on six continents in more than 50 countries.
For more information about the USGA, visit http://www.usga.org.