Start intervals a) Overflowed field. Of those who have studied the speed of the game and the flow of players on the course, it is well known that overcrowding is the most common cause of slower speeds than necessary and unacceptable waiting times. If the initial intervals between the groups are too small, this will lead to too many groups being informed at the same time, and in these circumstances it will be futile to accept all or none of the other recommendations contained in this manual. A lot of research has been done on the flow of players in the fields, but the following example shows in a simple way the problems that arise due to too short starting intervals: • The path starts with two pairs of 4 medium lengths followed by pairs 3 of medium length
The question is, how wide should the start intervals be? Answer: the more the better. However, in the case of a private club that is trying to give as many members as possible the opportunity to play on a given day, a golf resort that seeks to maximize revenues, or a tournament organizer that tries In a field of 156 players it is clear that there is a limit how wide the intervals can be. For groups of 2 players, an interval of at least 8 minutes is recommended.
When players are 3, this should last at least 10 minutes. When the players are 4 years old, you should consider intervals of 11 or even 12 minutes. A good guideline is that the initial interval should not be less than the time allotted for the passage of the hole faster than the step, and this becomes especially relevant when the hole is at the beginning of the round. When you fall into a group of two, three, and four players, the intervals should be based on groups of four. This shows that problems can increase in the case of groups of different sizes; this aspect will be discussed later in this section.
The concern, often expressed in connection with the increase in the initial intervals, is that it reduces the number of groups that can play on the field for one day, and therefore reduces the possibility of the game and potential income. Guide to Game Speed The reality is that reducing the time needed to play will guarantee those who start the game later in the day to complete the round, and therefore more time may be offered during the day. It should be borne in mind that there are very few realities of playing golf with maximum capacity, so increasing the time of departure will not have a significant impact on the number of players who will actually play on the field, but will increase the pleasure of players.
As mentioned in the introduction to the Guide, although changing the starting interval reduces the number of players playing on the field during the day, even if those who play have a positive experience, it is likely that golfers will want to play on the field in the medium term. In addition, these people may want to pay a little more, knowing that they have a guarantee of a pleasant experience. For an example of the potential positive financial impact of increasing starting intervals, see “Difference Between an Indoor Putting Green and Practice Green.”
b) Empty start intervals or “start intervals”. Even with appropriate starting intervals on the track, delays may occur due to a number of factors, such as finding the ball or in the case of a particularly difficult pit. These delays can be restored or at least reduced if there are empty start intervals, sometimes called “starter clearances”. If, for example, the initial intervals are 10 minutes and the Committee expects an empty departure time for every 10 groups, there will be a 10-minute break from hole 1 of the tee every 90 minutes. In the event of a delay on the starting tee at the beginning of the circle, the starter clearance must ensure the restoration of the delay, or at least part of it. Without an empty start interval, it is likely that the expectation on this hole will increase over the course of the day.
c) Departures from two tees. A “two-trip trip” occurs when groups start from two different holes at the same time, usually 1 and 10. If you need to bring out as many players in one day and the route allows departures from two triples, this can be an effective way to get more players to play faster on the field.