Rules of Play and Local Rules
Except as modified herein, all play in Majestic Oaks Men’s Club events shall be governed by the Rules of Golf and Decisions on the Rules of Golf published by the United States Golf Association (USGA).
**The USGA has proposed rules changes that would go into effect in 2019 if approved.**
For details visit www.usga.org/rules-hub/rules-modernization/
**USGA Rule Change effective January 1, 2017**
Local Rule for Accidental Movement of a Ball on the Putting Green
“When a player’s ball lies on the putting green, there is no penalty if the ball or ball-marker is accidentally moved by the player, his partner, his opponent, or any of their caddies or equipment. The moved ball or ball-marker must be replaced as provided in Rules 18-2, 18-3 and 20-1. This Local Rule applies only when the player’s ball or ball-marker lies on the putting green and any movement is accidental.
Note: If it is determined that a player’s ball on the putting green was moved as a result of wind, water or some other natural cause such as the effects of gravity, the ball must be played as it lies from its new location. A ball-marker moved in such circumstances is replaced.”
Q: Does the Local Rule apply to a ball moved by the wind?
A: No. If the ball was moved as a result of wind, water or some other natural cause (including gravity), the ball must be played as it lies from its new location without penalty.
Q: What types of actions are considered accidental?
A: Accidental movement can involve a variety of actions in which the player unintentionally moves his ball or ball-marker. Examples include: dropping the ball-marker on the ball, accidentally making contact with the ball when taking a practice swing near the ball, accidentally making contact when addressing the ball, etc.
Q: What are some examples of actions that are not considered accidental?
A: The Local Rule does not apply to any intentional lifting or moving of the ball. Examples include striking or moving the ball in anger, lifting the ball without marking it, etc.
Clubs and Balls (Rules 4 & 5). Only golf clubs and golf balls approved by the USGA may be used in Majestic Oaks Men’s Club events. Penalty for breach is disqualification.
Handicap (Rule 6-2). Unless otherwise stated in rules published for a specific event, players will use the USGA handicap in effect on the day of the competition. In multi-tee events or events involving men and women, handicap adjustments will be made in accordance with section 3-5 of the USGA Handicap Manual.
Time of Starting (Rule 6-3a). The disqualification penalty for failure to start on time is modified as follows:
If a player arrives at his starting point, ready to play, within five (5) minutes of his established starting time, the disqualification penalty is waived and the penalty shall be loss of hole in match play and two strokes at the first hole in stroke play.
Pace of Play Policy (Rule 6-7). Slow play will not be tolerated during Majestic Oaks Men’s Club events. The pace of play policy for all events is:
Your group is not in position with the group ahead of you and you are not maintaining a pace of 15 minutes per hole, or you are the first group and not maintaining a pace of 15 minutes per hole, you group will be warned.
Your group has 2 holes to make position progress. Failure to make position progress could subject each competitor to a 1 stroke penalty.
If your group has not made position progress 3 holes after being warned, each competitor may be subject to an additional 2 stroke penalty.
Further slow play may result in disqualification of any or all competitors in the group.
Discontinuance of Play (Rule 6-8). In the event of a dangerous situation, such as severe weather, the committee may suspend play. The signal for discontinuing play will be a long horn blast. The signal for resumption of play will be two (2) short horn blasts. In the absence of action by the committee, a player has the absolute right to discontinue play if he believes there is danger from lightning.
Weather Delays. Weather delays will be a maximum of two (2) hours duration. In the event a delay exceeds 2 hours duration, the event will be cancelled and/or rescheduled. The period of the delay begins when the severe signal horn (see above) is sounded and ends when the horn is sounded for continuation of play. The decision to resume play will be made by the Committee in consultation with the Head Professional.
Stones in Bunkers (Rule 13-4). Stones in bunkers are movable obstructions. Relief without penalty may be taken in accordance with Rule 24-1.
Distance Measuring Devices (Rule 14-3). In all Majestic Oaks Men’s Club events, a player may obtain distance information by using a device that measures distance only. If, during a stipulated round, a player uses a distance-measuring device that is designed to gauge or measure other conditions that might affect his play (e.g., gradient, wind speed, temperature, etc.), the player is in breach of Rule 14-3, for which the penalty is disqualification, regardless of whether any such additional function is actually used.
Immovable Obstructions Near the Putting Green (Rule 24-2). if a ball lies off the putting green but not in a hazard and an immovable obstruction on or within two club-lengths of the putting green and within two club-lengths of the ball intervenes on the line of play between the ball and the hole, the player may take relief as follows:
The ball must be lifted and dropped at the nearest point to where the ball lay that (a) is not nearer the hole, (b) avoids intervention and (c) is not in a hazard or on a putting green. The ball may be cleaned when lifted.
Relief under this Local Rule is also available if the player's ball lies on the putting green and an immovable obstruction within two club-lengths of the putting green intervenes on his line of putt. The player may take relief as follows:
The ball must be lifted and placed at the nearest point to where the ball lay that (a) is not nearer the hole, (b) avoids intervention and (c) is not in a hazard. The ball may be cleaned when lifted.
Sprinkler Control Boxes (Rule 24-2). All sprinkler control boxes are immovable obstructions. Relief for interference with stance or swing may be taken in accordance with Rule 24-2. Relief under Rule 24-2 is not available for interference with line of play.
Yardage Marker Plates (Rule 24-2). All yardage marker plates and concrete bases for yardage posts are immovable obstructions. Relief for interference with stance or swing may be taken in accordance with Rule 24-2.
Roads and Cart Paths (Rule 24-2). Only artificially surfaced roads and cart paths are obstructions. A road or path to which any foreign material, e.g., concrete, tar, gravel, wood chips, etc., has been applied is artificially-surfaced.
Ground Under Repair (Rule 25-1). Areas of ground under repair are defined by white lines and relief may be taken in accordance with Rule 25-1. Other areas that may constitute ground under repair include grass clippings piled for removal, tree debris cut for removal and a hole or trench made by a greenskeeper.
Aeration Holes (Rule 25-1). Through the green, a ball that comes to rest in or on an aeration hole may be lifted without penalty, cleaned and dropped as near as possible to the spot where it lay but not nearer the hole. The ball when dropped must first strike a part of the course through the green. On the putting green, a ball that comes to rest in or on an aeration hole may be placed at the nearest spot not nearer the hole that avoids the situation.
Embedded Ball (Rule 25-2). Through the green, a ball that is embedded in its own pitch-mark in the ground may be lifted, without penalty, cleaned and dropped as near as possible to where it lay but not nearer the hole. The ball when dropped must first strike a part of the course through the green.
A player may not take relief under this Local Rule if the ball is embedded in sand in an area that is not closely mown.
A player may not take relief under this Local Rule if it is clearly unreasonable for him to make a stroke because of interference by anything other than the condition covered by this Local Rule.
Water Hazards (Rule 26). All water hazards on the course are to be played as lateral water hazards. They are defined by either red stakes or red lines on holes 1, 3, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, & 17. If both lines and stakes are present, the margin of the water hazard is defined by the lines.
Provisional Ball Under Water Hazard Rule (Rule 26). If there is doubt whether a ball is in or is lost in the a water hazard, a player may play another ball provisionally under any of the applicable options in Rule 26-1. If the original ball is found outside the water hazard, the player must continue play with it. If the original ball is found in the water hazard, the player may either play the original ball as it lies or continue with the ball played provisionally under Rule 26-1. If the original ball is not found or identified within the five-minute search period, the player must continue with the ball played provisionally.
Out of Bounds (Rule 27). Out of bounds is defined by white lines, or the inside edge, at ground level of white stakes on holes 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 14, 16, & 18. Surfaced parking lots and the entry road are out of bounds.