Friday, September 10, 2010

Ask Linda #237-Ball ricochets backward into hazard

Hi Linda,

I came across the following interesting scenario during my round a couple of days ago.

Hole #3 is a Par 3 that shares a common tee ground with another hole (#12) facing the other direction. There is a water hazard marked for #12 between the tee and the hole for #12.

The tee-shot of #3 hits the sand box and ricochets all the way backward into the water hazard on hole #12, which is behind the #3 tee.

What is the correct procedure to continue? Should I go across the water hazard to drop?

If I must go across the water to drop, what if that body of water is the Pacific Ocean??

Thank you very much!

Lou Lou

Dear Lou Lou,

I will answer your question by first proposing the best solution for your predicament.

Rule 26-1a (Relief for Ball in Water Hazard) offers you the option to play a ball from the spot where you played the original ball. In the case of a ball that was hit from the teeing ground, you would be permitted to tee up another ball and try again. Counting the one penalty stroke for taking relief from the hazard, this would be your third shot.

If you choose to take relief under 26-1b (and I can’t imagine why you would want to), you would have to go to the other side of the hazard and drop a ball behind the hazard on a line directly to the hole. This, too, would be your third shot.

Regardless of whether the hazard is a narrow creek or a large lake, there is most likely no sane reason to do anything other than re-tee.

The Pacific Ocean would never be a water hazard between the teeing ground and the hole, so that theoretical part of your question is unanswerable. When a large body of water such as an ocean or a river is in play on a hole, then it is generally marked as a lateral water hazard.


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