Monday, May 9, 2016
Rules Nugget: Hole Made by a Greenkeeper
A hole made by a greenkeeper is not always “a hole made by a greenkeeper.” For example, aeration holes, even though they are holes that are made by the greenkeeper (or his staff), are not “a hole made by a greenkeeper” as that term is used in the Rules of Golf [Decision 25/15].
The term appears in the Definition of “Ground Under Repair.” It generally refers to ground that is dug up in the process of maintaining the course [Decision 25/14]. Some examples would be holes dug (1) to install or repair pipelines, (2) to remove a tree stump, or (3) to repair turf. It also refers to a second hole on the putting greens of a nine-hole course, where one hole is used for play of the first nine holes and the other for the second nine [Decision 16/7].
If you have interference from a hole made by a greenkeeper, you are entitled to free relief under Rule 25 (“Abnormal Ground Conditions”).
You may get free relief from aeration holes if the Committee adopts Local Rule 3d [Appendix I, Part A]. If this Local Rule is in effect, and your ball lies in an aeration hole through the green, you may lift, clean, and drop the ball as close as possible to where it lies, no closer to the hole; on the putting green, the ball would be placed. If you are playing a course that has been aerated recently, it’s the wise player who checks whether this Local Rule is in effect before he starts his round.
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