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Flag In or Out?


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Yep, while the union did not mandate it, the club certainly did. Even though I haven't been exactly pleased with putting with the flagstick in, I had no issues with accepting it as something the club requires you to do if you want to play.

Swing DNA: 91/4/3/6/6
D & 3W: ST 180 / 3i: MP-H5 / 4-PW: MP-4 / 50º: MP-T5 / 55º: FG Tour PMP  / 60º: Hi-Toe / Mizuno Bettinardi BC-4

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Those last three cases were would've been perfectly good putts under normal conditions, in which the flagstick would not have been in the hole. Obviously they weren't good enough for holes with flagsticks deflecting balls out. Hence, putting with the flagstick in the hole is more difficult for me under the conditions in which I usually play. Those conditions include the diameter and the material of the flagstick, how tightly the butt of the stick fits into the cup etc, everything that affects how much of the ball's kinetic energy is absorbed by the flagstick in the collision and how much room there is for the ball to drop in.

Swing DNA: 91/4/3/6/6
D & 3W: ST 180 / 3i: MP-H5 / 4-PW: MP-4 / 50º: MP-T5 / 55º: FG Tour PMP  / 60º: Hi-Toe / Mizuno Bettinardi BC-4

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"Those conditions include the diameter and the material of the flagstick, how tightly the butt of the stick fits into the cup etc, everything that affects how much of the ball's kinetic energy is absorbed by the flagstick in the collision and how much room there is for the ball to drop in."

If you calculate all that on the run do you not get accused of slow play?

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I admire your conviction to hold true to having made perfectly good putts. Personally, I don't think there will ever be satisfactory definitive research on the issue. I do know that the new rule gives players more options then they had before. I'm curious if since you are playing under a "no removal of the flag" condition, had the cup been manipulated in any way for those particular putts as well (i.e. upside down, foam or pvc added, etc.)?

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Good observation

I think the flag is taking the blame for a shallow cup during lockdown.

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[url="http://www.golfwrx.com/forums/topic/1408766-my-bag-pic-heavy-jdm/"]http://www.golfwrx.c...-pic-heavy-jdm/[/url]

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I don't care about those issues while playing as there's nothing I can do about it now and once the flagstick can be removed (probably next week), it won't be a problem anymore. :) I was simply stating the possibilities of why others might not suffer from the problems while others obviously do. One big difference is whether you're aiming for the back of the cup or trying to die the ball by the hole. I belong to the former group and I remember plenty of others who've had the same issues say the same thing.
@oikos1 And I have to wonder how some people seem to struggle with the idea that it's possible for the flagstick to deflect good putts out. The same applies to the thread about carts in tee boxes, it absolutely can be a problem yet some are ready to call those who are worried about it by names. And no, it's not because of the foam at the bottom of the cup, I had the same issues last year when I tried putting with the flagstick in.

Here's one example of the situation (I can't be bothered to go out and start filming myself as I don't care what others do): https://www.instagram.com/p/BtjYfdUFSeA/

Swing DNA: 91/4/3/6/6
D & 3W: ST 180 / 3i: MP-H5 / 4-PW: MP-4 / 50º: MP-T5 / 55º: FG Tour PMP  / 60º: Hi-Toe / Mizuno Bettinardi BC-4

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Doesn’t bother me one bit having it in. Actually makes the game flow a little better since you can hole out your putt and not have to wait for everyone to get on the green

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It probably depends on the style of putter you are. I tend to die the ball in the hole and have yet to have the flag stick kick a putt out nor had one not stay in with an inverted cup or pvc pipe in the cup. I can see it being an issue if you are the type of putter that likes to hit the ball off the back of the cup when it goes in.

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Hypothetical question but I think I know the answer

What would people think about having no flag at all? For people who demand the flag out while putting; does your putting requirements outweigh your need for precise hole location on your approach shots?

My course contemplated this at the beginning of lockdown. All flags on our course are the same colour so we post flag locations on the first tee. ABC front middle back rotation so you know roughly where the hole is.

I guess guess the major objection would come from people who use a laser and we all know us WRXers average 3 foot proximity with long irons so we require absolute accuracy.

Just a though.

WITB: Epon, Ryoma, A-Grind, Yururi, Bettinardi
[url="http://www.golfwrx.com/forums/topic/1408766-my-bag-pic-heavy-jdm/"]http://www.golfwrx.c...-pic-heavy-jdm/[/url]

[b]Trees may be 90% air but they're 100% angry.[/b]

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I get that you are the epitome of WRX and would be on tour if it wasn’t for that one bad break but maybe not knowing exact pin location would force people to shoot for centre of the green and actually help scores. Just a thought for thinkingplus lol

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[url="http://www.golfwrx.com/forums/topic/1408766-my-bag-pic-heavy-jdm/"]http://www.golfwrx.c...-pic-heavy-jdm/[/url]

[b]Trees may be 90% air but they're 100% angry.[/b]

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I haven’t pulled a pin in months. It took some getting used to first especially on short putts. I however did play with a random the other day that had no idea you were supposed to leave the flags in and also didn’t know all the rakes were gone. I always pulled on putts 10’ and in. Doesn’t really bother me anymore.

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I think his point is that the average player might aim for centers of greens rather than shooting at pins all the time, some of which are 'sucker' pins. This could indeed help the scores for some players. Part of the reason I'm still on the fence regarding GPS vs laser use and I'm currently testing both out. The scientist in me obviously favors the laser for the accurate pin distance, but I also realize that the GPS may result in more prudent decision making when pulling a club and choosing a target.

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I suggested such a competition to our club and the GM seemed interested in the idea but it got buried or simply forgotten. The idea was to disallow the use of distance-measuring devices altogether, give some vague notes about the hole location to the first group out and the following groups would simply need to keep up and see where the group ahead is putting if they wanted to have any idea of where the hole is located.

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D & 3W: ST 180 / 3i: MP-H5 / 4-PW: MP-4 / 50º: MP-T5 / 55º: FG Tour PMP  / 60º: Hi-Toe / Mizuno Bettinardi BC-4

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I doubt very much any club, not even in Finland, has the power to overrule Rules of Golf. However, the prohibition at some clubs that I am aware of were of practical nature as the installation used to facilitate picking up the ball without touching the pin was not easy to re-install so the clubs in question prohibited players to remove the pin. This presented some problems in the first competitions played in Finland this year as the Rules cannot be overridden by the clubs but at a few of the clubs hosting the competitions they could not change the type of installation and we just had to live with that.

The vast majority of courses in Finland did/do not have that kind of problems and the pins have been able to be removed since the courses opened.

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Yeah, but common sense isn’t very common anymore. It’s common knowledge that being over weight is very bad for your health but.....

 

WITB: Epon, Ryoma, A-Grind, Yururi, Bettinardi
[url="http://www.golfwrx.com/forums/topic/1408766-my-bag-pic-heavy-jdm/"]http://www.golfwrx.c...-pic-heavy-jdm/[/url]

[b]Trees may be 90% air but they're 100% angry.[/b]

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Absolutely, just easier said then done. I've been too hyperfocused on the pin distance # vs. everything else going on when using a laser and I know better. Just happens, especially when things are going south already. Stupid game.

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Adams a7 PNT 19*

Maltby DBM Forged 5-9

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If that's the case, I have to say the information provided by the R&A left me with the wrong impression. This is from the first letter regarding Covid from the R&A from March. I assumed this was a temporary modification of the Rules of Golf as opposed to a suggestion by the R&A to play outside of the Rules of Golf:

 

image.png

I can't recall any information from our national union that clubs wouldn't be allowed to adopt such temporary policies. Nor can I recall them having said such policy would render all rounds with such a rule in place to have been played outside of the Rules of Golf and therefore not postable for handicapping purposes. They did make that point very clear with regard to all bunkers being designated as GUR or the use lifted cups though.

 

The Union did instruct that the flagsticks can be removed from the hole in their competitions and cannot be forced to be left in (excluding those couple of courses).

Swing DNA: 91/4/3/6/6
D & 3W: ST 180 / 3i: MP-H5 / 4-PW: MP-4 / 50º: MP-T5 / 55º: FG Tour PMP  / 60º: Hi-Toe / Mizuno Bettinardi BC-4

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I'm a decent putter, my strength being distance control (terrible at reading a green LOL). Since the rule allowing the flagstick to remain in I have the unscientific opinion I have been hurt more than helped by leaving it in. A putt at even a pretty good clip, if it hits the flagstick dead center, has a good chance of going in and may have been helped in that regard, A putt making even a somewhat glancing strike, off to one side or the other, may have a better chance of dropping without the flagstick, in my experience and opinion, than being kept out. I also mentioned earlier that with the flagstick in I find myself, as a result of my own experiences, trying to die the ball in the hole leaving too many short or going so slow as to be negatively influenced by the smallest imperfection in the green as the ball nears the hole (I've even had balls rock back from the lip because of poorly cut holes with raised lips).

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When playing alone, I'll leave the flags in, generally I'm trying to beat sunset to get in 18. When playing with a group, I"ll do what they do. If given a choice by the group, pull it for 15' and less.

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I hope I haven't given the impression that I don't think it's possible for the flag stick to deflect good putts out. No one will ever really know because as much as researchers try, no one can recreate the putts that may or may not have gone in. And that is why the "research" that has been done leaves much to be desired. It's very linear in it's approach. If having the flag stick in for all or even some putts allows someone to make more putts over time (and the reasons could be numerous for this, from seeing the line better to having the flag help stop the ball to simply having more confidence), the loss of a few putts being kicked out may well be worth the gain of making more putts. I have no problem with someone wanting the flag stick in or out. I make my decision after evaluating my putt.

I suppose the ultimate point is the ruling bodies have given all golfers a choice, for every putt they will ever have, until the rule may change again.

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Good point, Halebopp.

The information I have and presented came to me directly from the Coordinator of Competitions so I suppose she has got things wrong, or our national association has more information and knowledge on this matter than either of us. A confusing situation nevertheless.

FWIW, you have received that information as well, if you have visited the info channel.

Furthermore, there are many courses in Finland where the recommendation is/has been in use, so not every course has chosen the option facilitated by R&A to prohibit the pins to be removed. In fact, I have not played any such course until now.

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I did read all the messages - after having officiated a Future Tour event. :D The phone application had signed off from the server and as it had not been in very active use in April and early May, I didn't even think about not having received any notifications from it. Oh well... When I did read that message, I have to say I was quite surprised by it but thought national unions have the final say in the matter. And they're telling us it can't be mandated in their competitions. That, in my opinion, doesn't change the fact that such a temporary local rule wouldn't still be in accordance with the Rules of Golf. and available for all other competitions and regular play at clubs. It's merely just another local rule at each club's disposal for now.

 

But it seems like all the courses have returned, or are returning to normal life with regard to bunker rakes and flagsticks now, including the club at which I'll be officiating another Future Tour event next week.

Swing DNA: 91/4/3/6/6
D & 3W: ST 180 / 3i: MP-H5 / 4-PW: MP-4 / 50º: MP-T5 / 55º: FG Tour PMP  / 60º: Hi-Toe / Mizuno Bettinardi BC-4

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I imagine the penalty is being ostracized, shamed, and probably told to leave. The local rules for the club do not list a 'Penalty' as far as strokes, but there is, in all-capital, bolded letters: "At this course THE FLAGSTICK MAY NOT BE REMOVED, it shall instead remain UNTOUCHED" I assume therefore, that the penalty is disqualification from the event, and otherwise being "Talked to" by club leadership.

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