Slope

Under Slope, a golfer’s playing handicap on any given day will be determined according to the difficulty of the tees or course to be played. Golf Australia believes that this will be fairer than our current one-handicap-fits-all-courses method.

What are the features of slope?
• Every set of tees on every golf course around the country will have a Slope Rating which has been determined in accordance with the new course rating system. The maximum Slope Rating is 155 (most difficult) 
and the minimum is 55 (least difficult). The Neutral Slope Rating is 113. Every set of tees will also have a Scratch Rating.
• GOLF Link will calculate a nationally-standardised handicap index for every player and this will be called the GA Handicap.
• A GA Handicap will be calculated by using the best 8 of a player’s most recent 20 scores (ie best 8 of 20, x 0.93). However, every score in every player’s score history will first be standardised by GOLF Link against a Slope Rating of 113. As a result, the GA Handicap will reflect a golfer’s ability on a course which has the neutral Slope Rating of 113.
• The GA Handicap is not intended for use as a playing handicap. It is to be used in conjunction with the Slope Rating of the set of tees being played to calculate a golfer’s playing handicap for the day, and this will be called the Daily Handicap.
• It is the GA Handicap that will be displayed in a player’s GOLF Link record on www.golflink.com.au.

How will Slope make things fairer?

Generally speaking, a high marker finds it harder to adjust to a difficult course than a low marker does. Slope adjustments will play a balancing role. For example, if the Black Tees are harder than the White Tees, a high -marker may play the Black Tees off a handicap of 28 and the White Tees off 24. The Elite player finds it easier to adjust, so they may play the Black Tees off 4 and the White Tees off 3. Golf Australia believes this is fairer than having the difference between the elite player’s handicap and the high-marker’s handicap always stay the same.

Every time before playing a round, a player should check what their daily handicap will be for that round. How can they do this?

• Different clubs will use different methods to communicate Daily Handicaps to golfers. Examples of different methods include via the use of existing club computer systems, and via direct printing on to score cards. Some clubs will provide easy-to-use Daily Handicap look-up posters.
• The GA website and the GOLF Link website will feature Daily Handicap calculators.

A player will play off their daily handicap when they visit another club, but what handicap do they use at their home Club?
• Whether at an away club or at the Home Club, the player will need to check their Daily Handicap for the tees they are playing from and play off this handicap.
• Home Club Example: A player with a GA Handicap of 22.3 when playing off the White Tees (eg Slope Rating of 119) at their Home Club will play off a Daily Handicap of 23; and when they play off the Blue Tees 
(eg Slope Rating of 136) will play off a Daily Handicap of 27. (Note: The same calculations would apply if the example was for an away club).

What is the formula that Golf Link will use to calculate a daily handicap?
Daily Handicap = GA Handicap x Slope Rating ÷ Neutral Slope Rating 
(ie 113)
1. Calculation of Ga handicap – Best 8 of 20, Multiplied by 0.93 [already in effect]*
To calculate a player’s GA Handicap, GOLF Link does the following:
• Firstly it identifies their most recent 20 scores (these are displayed on www.golflink.com.au),
• It then averages the Differentials from the best 8 of them (Differential is the calculation of the player’s score against the course rating; it is the value listed in the ‘Played To’ column on www.golflink.com.au),
• Finally it multiplies this average by 0.93. The resultant figure is the player’s GA Handicap.

Example 2 

Adam’s GA Handicap is 18.4 and he plays from a set of tees with a 
Slope Rating of 95.
18.4 x 95 ÷ 113 = 15.
Adam’s Daily Handicap is 15.

Example 1 
Adam’s GA Handicap is 18.4 and he plays from a set of tees with a 
Slope Rating of 128.
18.4 x 128 ÷ 113 = 21.
Adam’s Daily Handicap is 21.