Pace of Play Policy

Pace of Play

Rule 5.6 states, in part: “The player shall play without unreasonable delay in accordance with any pace of play guidelines which may be laid down by The Committee,” and thereafter prescribes penalties for slow play. In order to prevent any such penalty, we suggest that you review carefully the following guidelines:

Definition of “Out of Position”

The first group (each side; both morning and afternoon “waves”) to start will be considered out of position if, at any time during the round, the group is behind the prescribed schedule as detailed on the players scorecard and/or the addendum to the rules of play sheet.

Any subsequent group will be considered out of position if it is (a) behind the prescribed schedule and (b) reaches a par-3 hole that is clear of all play and all players in the preceding group have played from the next teeing area or reaches a par-4 or par-5 hole that is clear of all play. Both (a) and (b) must apply for a group to be out of position.

Group Out of Position

If a group is out of position, a GSGA Rover will monitor it. A group will be notified when they are being timed.

Intermediate Division ONLY: If a group falls out of position to the extent that it is two holes behind the preceding group, the entire group will be notified to discontinue play of the current hole immediately and proceed to the next teeing area. The group will record a score of Double Par for any hole(s) not completed.


A group may be monitored or timed for compliance with this pace of play guideline if it is “out of position.” When a group is “out of position” a player in the group is expected to play a stroke within 40 seconds. The timing of a player’s stroke will begin when he has had reasonable opportunity to reach his ball, it is his turn to play, and he can play without interference or distraction.

Except on the putting green, if a player has reached his ball, it is his turn to play, and there are no distractions, timing will begin after he has had reasonable time to select his club. Time spent walking backward or forward for determining yardages will count as part of the time taken for the next stroke.

On the putting green, timing will begin after a player has been allowed a reasonable amount of time to lift, clean, and replace his ball, repair his ball mark and other ball marks on his line of putt, and remove loose impediments on his line of putt. Time spent looking at the line from beyond the hole and/or behind the ball will count as part of the time taken for the next stroke.

Pace of Play Penalties

The following are the penalties, in sequence, for any players in a group out of position who take more than 40 seconds to play a stroke when it is his turn to play:

One bad timing of more than 40 seconds – warning

A second bad timing – additional warning

A third bad timing – 1-stroke penalty

A fourth bad timing – Additional warning and 2-stroke penalty

A fifth bad timing – Disqualification

NOTE: If the group in question regains its proper position, any previous timings of more than 40 seconds will be carried over for the remainder of that round in the event that the group requires additional monitoring.

Rescinding Penalties

Any penalties received during the round can be rescinded at the end of the round if (a) the group reaches its final hole before the hole is open and free of play or (b) the group finishes the round on or below the prescribed schedule. If players in a group run after receiving a penalty they forfeit the ability to have any penalties rescinded at the end of the round.

Rulings or Other Incidents

If a ruling or some other legitimate delay occurs which causes the group in question to lose its position, that group is expected to regain its position within a reasonable time. All information will be taken into consideration when issuing or rescinding any penalties.

The GSGA reserves the right to adjust this Pace of Play Policy – Revised 1/17/19