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Noticing faster rounds with 1 person/cart


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Here in the SF Bay Area, courses and driving ranges are absolutely packed. I've been playing at the same muni for 10+ years and I have never had to even make a tee time. Just show up, and will most likely get on the 1st tee in about half an hour. However, the past 2 months or so I have to book days in advance and no chance of just walking in hoping for an opening.

 

So, one would think that a packed course (that will inevitably have a lot of rookie golfers) would produce some seriously slow rounds.

 

However, I have been shocked and really pleased with the pace of play. I have thought for years that one of the main contributing factors to slow play was having 2 people in the same cart. We all know how that goes -- both drive to one side of the fairway, then the other....etc.

 

Due to covid's social distancing, all of the courses are limiting to one player per cart, and I think this is the driving force to quicker pace of play.

 

Anyone else noticing this?

 

 

 

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Here in the SF Bay Area, courses and driving ranges are absolutely packed. I've been playing at the same muni for 10+ years and I have never had to even make a tee time. Just show up, and will most li

Honestly it would be nearly as fast with 2 riders per cart.  The issue is most people do not know how to efficiently use the cart.  What should happen is Golfer A drops golfer B at his ball with his c

Single carts leapfrog over the IQ points needed by people to use your awareness and logic. 99% of people are so clueless, they monopolize two holes on a busy practice green by standing right next

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The only time it is not faster is when it's cart paths only. Then its park, grab your stuff, hike out to the other side of the fairway and back. With 2 people one can pull the cart up while the other is walking up. But when its dry we fly with one player carts. 

 

Has anyone noticed that when you do pull the pin now how much bigger the hole looks? 

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15 minutes ago, TourSpoon said:

The only time it is not faster is when it's cart paths only. Then its park, grab your stuff, hike out to the other side of the fairway and back. With 2 people one can pull the cart up while the other is walking up. But when its dry we fly with one player carts. 

 

Has anyone noticed that when you do pull the pin now how much bigger the hole looks? 

Can't really say I agree with this.

 

Yesterday I played with 3 friends.  They had a special at my course so they road in 2 carts and I walked as I prefer the exercise.  I was noticeably faster then them.   While they were walking back to their carts off the green I was already on the next tee block.  Now I did hustle often jogging off the tee block to keep up to our tee shots but had no problem keeping up with the carts.  Occasionally I jumped on the back of a cart when it was a long drive to the next hole.  

 

Walking is way faster around the greens and tee blocks but carts are faster off the tee.  I think a walker can easily keep up with carts but they do have to move.  Not for everyone.  

 

 

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One thing I really like about the flag in rule is people waiting to hit their approach can shoot the pin and prepare for their shot while the group in front is putting out.  It's a bit more of a guessing game when the flags has been pulled.

 

I do hate it though when my ball ends up in the shadow of the flag, especially on windy days.  Makes it really hard to focus.  

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15 minutes ago, kozubs said:

Can't really say I agree with this.

 

Yesterday I played with 3 friends.  They had a special at my course so they road in 2 carts and I walked as I prefer the exercise.  I was noticeably faster then them.   While they were walking back to their carts off the green I was already on the next tee block.  Now I did hustle often jogging off the tee block to keep up to our tee shots but had no problem keeping up with the carts.  Occasionally I jumped on the back of a cart when it was a long drive to the next hole.  

 

Walking is way faster around the greens and tee blocks but carts are faster off the tee.  I think a walker can easily keep up with carts but they do have to move.  Not for everyone.  

 

 

The OT was single rider carts versus two in a cart, not walking versus riding.  My point was about taking a riding cart when conditions restrict the cart to the cart path only. Then the 2 person scenario is better because you can have someone walk across the fairway and up towards the green while the other guy pulls the cart up. Otherwise its the guy that walked across the fairway that has to walk back and grab the cart.  That takes extra time. 

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When the courses first re-opened here in MA with 15 min tee times and 1 cart per person, it was incredible how well things flowed. Didn't have any rounds over 4 hours and most were 3:30 or less. The only problems then were when the groups riding would actually play too fast and start stacking up behind groups that had people walking. But even those groups were moving along at a good pace.

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7 hours ago, Blaiser said:

Here in the SF Bay Area, courses and driving ranges are absolutely packed. I've been playing at the same muni for 10+ years and I have never had to even make a tee time. Just show up, and will most likely get on the 1st tee in about half an hour. However, the past 2 months or so I have to book days in advance and no chance of just walking in hoping for an opening.

 

So, one would think that a packed course (that will inevitably have a lot of rookie golfers) would produce some seriously slow rounds.

 

However, I have been shocked and really pleased with the pace of play. I have thought for years that one of the main contributing factors to slow play was having 2 people in the same cart. We all know how that goes -- both drive to one side of the fairway, then the other....etc.

 

Due to covid's social distancing, all of the courses are limiting to one player per cart, and I think this is the driving force to quicker pace of play.

 

Anyone else noticing this?

 

 

 

 

 

I have three priorities when playing golf.     Play well, play with people I enjoy and play fast. 

 

 

Excellent post and yes, I have noticed. 

 

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Yep, a little less social but definitely keeps things moving.  Totally agree on the comments about leaving the flagstick in.   Golf sales/green fees must be up 200%+.   

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Honestly it would be nearly as fast with 2 riders per cart.  The issue is most people do not know how to efficiently use the cart.  What should happen is Golfer A drops golfer B at his ball with his club(s) and then drives to his ball.  Golfer B hits his second shot and starts walking to Golfer A/cart.  What happens normally at least where I play is Golfer A drives golfer B over to his ball and waits for him/her to hit their 2nd shot and then they drive over to Golfer A's ball.  People seem to think carts are a license to not have to walk much on the course,

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I'm half and half because when I rush I don't play as well, but I hate taking forever myself. I try to be quick navigating from shot to shot, but from getting distances to a couple swings and taking the shot, I will take my time. I don't like to spend 5 minutes looking for a ball either, so if it's lost somewhere in the rough, I'll drop in the vicinity without penalty, but if there's a hazard or OB area that I may have crawled into, then I'll take the penalty. I shouldn't have ended up over there anyways.

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I think they should design single player golf carts. I love the whole idea of single rider anyways. Anybody else watch from the tee box two players who are the slowest of the slow just getting from one players ball to the other. Now if each were at their own golf balls at the same time, the amount of time saved when they both hit at the same time is a good amount. 

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11 hours ago, Blaiser said:

Here in the SF Bay Area, courses and driving ranges are absolutely packed. I've been playing at the same muni for 10+ years and I have never had to even make a tee time. Just show up, and will most likely get on the 1st tee in about half an hour. However, the past 2 months or so I have to book days in advance and no chance of just walking in hoping for an opening.

 

So, one would think that a packed course (that will inevitably have a lot of rookie golfers) would produce some seriously slow rounds.

 

However, I have been shocked and really pleased with the pace of play. I have thought for years that one of the main contributing factors to slow play was having 2 people in the same cart. We all know how that goes -- both drive to one side of the fairway, then the other....etc.

 

Due to covid's social distancing, all of the courses are limiting to one player per cart, and I think this is the driving force to quicker pace of play.

 

Anyone else noticing this?

 

 

 

 

This is our course in every way you described it.   We have a packed tee sheet from 6:30 am to 6:00 PM.   Almost every round is being completed in 3:45 minutes or less.  The late afternoon times around five are a bit slower as our twilight hour players are generally more families or new golfers that are a bit slower in things.

 

Other big factors are 12 minute tee times, up from 9 minutes,  flags still in, and no rakes in bunker still, so casual play it's a local rule for lift clean and place in the bunker. 

 

 

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This has definitely been the trend at my home course.  I honestly prefer it now and it's going to be hard to go back to the "old" way.   I have also gotten 100% used to the flagstick being in.  I think it helps with pace too, but not drastically. 

 

About a year ago our course got 4 of the Finn scooters.  The first thing we noticed then was how much faster we played because we were all riding solo.  I am a big fan.  There is plenty of socializing on tee boxes and greens, in my opinion.

 

Our average 4some now plays in about 3.5 hours.  We play for money so we're putting everything out (within reason).  Prior to this it was closer to 4 hours. 

 

We are way busier than pre-covid, but pace of play has not been an issue.  Private course in NC.

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3 hours ago, PhilsFanDrew said:

Honestly it would be nearly as fast with 2 riders per cart.  The issue is most people do not know how to efficiently use the cart.  What should happen is Golfer A drops golfer B at his ball with his club(s) and then drives to his ball.  Golfer B hits his second shot and starts walking to Golfer A/cart.  What happens normally at least where I play is Golfer A drives golfer B over to his ball and waits for him/her to hit their 2nd shot and then they drive over to Golfer A's ball.  People seem to think carts are a license to not have to walk much on the course,

 

Single carts leapfrog over the IQ points needed by people to use your awareness and logic.

99% of people are so clueless, they monopolize two holes on a busy practice green by standing right next to one as they putt to another.

Explaining your logic to the average golfer would be like trying to explain differential equations to your dog. You'd get the same look:

 

 

 

 

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44 minutes ago, Soloman1 said:

 

Single carts leapfrog over the IQ points needed by people to use your awareness and logic.

99% of people are so clueless, they monopolize two holes on a busy practice green by standing right next to one as they putt to another.

Explaining your logic to the average golfer would be like trying to explain differential equations to your dog. You'd get the same look:

 

 

 

 

 

 

LOL.

 

This is exactly right. And it applies to tons of activities other than golf. Pick your analogy. "Traffic would be better if people just..."

 

Relying on people to be savvy isn't a good strategy. Would love to see single carts become the norm.

 

I don't think its takes too much away from the social aspect of the game, plenty of opportunities to chat with your playing partners while riding as a single. 

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17 minutes ago, Blaiser said:

 

LOL.

 

This is exactly right. And it applies to tons of activities other than golf. Pick your analogy. "Traffic would be better if people just..."

 

Relying on people to be savvy isn't a good strategy. Would love to see single carts become the norm.

 

I don't think its takes too much away from the social aspect of the game, plenty of opportunities to chat with your playing partners while riding as a single. 

The only potential downside is if the course has limited carts and having one rider per cart can also lead to higher maintenance fees which in turn leads to higher greens/cart fees.  

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It may appear helpful but individual carts have minimal influence on pace of play.  All they allow is for golfers to head to their balls, respectively, not a lot different than if everyone walks.  Every course I have played since courses reopened I have asked the starter about pace of play and what the time spread is between tee groups.  Pace of play has somewhat improved but the spread went to 10-12 mins which is THE BIGGEST contributor to improved pace of play.  

 

The problem with that is as the Virus influence subsides and courses evolve back to prior conditions, they will most likely go back to 7-8 min spread which gets more people out on the course, more profit, but causes backup on difficult Par 3's and Par 5's where people wait on the tee cause they think they are big hitters and wait in the fairway to go for it even though they never get close.

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48 minutes ago, Pepperturbo said:

It may appear helpful but individual carts have minimal influence on pace of play.  All they allow is for golfers to head to their balls, respectively, not a lot different than if everyone walks.  Every course I have played since courses reopened I have asked the starter about pace of play and what the time spread is between tee groups.  Pace of play has somewhat improved but the spread went to 10-12 mins which is THE BIGGEST contributor to improved pace of play.  

 

The problem with that is as the Virus influence subsides and courses evolve back to prior conditions, they will most likely go back to 7-8 min spread which gets more people out on the course, more profit, but causes backup on difficult Par 3's and Par 5's where people wait on the tee cause they think they are big hitters and wait in the fairway to go for it even though they never get close.

 

There are a lot courses where walking isn't practical because of the distance between holes. Anecdotal only,  but I've seen rounds reduced by 30 minutes. I like it. And starting intervals weren't increased, so that could not have been the reason. I'm not sure how adding more time to starting intervals reduces overall time. And let's not forget that there are still unlucky people stuck behind beginners who weren't told that 7 practice swings are not necessary for each of their 15 x 20 yard shots per hole.

 

I agree that things will devolve back to crappy, packed, slow play as before because very few places give a hoot about customers. Then people will stop playing again because they have to go back into the dreaded turnstile of a business model that made them quit in the first place.

 

Courses aren't running out of golf carts. Not all groups use separate carts and extra carts are around to support large outings. Pricing and P&L projections are based on using them, not having them sit around.

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1 minute ago, Soloman1 said:

 

There are a lot courses where walking isn't practical because of the distance between holes. Anecdotal only,  but I've seen rounds reduced by 30 minutes. I like it. And starting intervals weren't increased, so that could not have been the reason. I'm not sure how adding more time to starting intervals reduces overall time. And let's not forget that there are still unlucky people stuck behind beginners who weren't told that 7 practice swings are not necessary for each of their 15 x 20 yard shots per hole.

 

I agree that things will devolve back to crappy, packed, slow play as before because very few places give a hoot about customers. Then people will stop playing again because they have to go back into the dreaded turnstile of a business model that made them quit in the first place.

 

Courses aren't running out of golf carts. Not all groups use separate carts and extra carts are around to support large outings. Pricing and P&L projections are based on using them, not having them sit around.

That's amazing - given the perimeters States, Cities and county's put on courses to reopen, you say courses where you are didn't adjust intervals.  In CA, AZ, TX and HI, all the courses I have played adjusted spread to accommodate what was stipulated as proper preparation to reopen.   Large outing were not allowed at public even many private courses in the aforementioned states.   I am not drawing a conclusion about all states when I know some states didn't have the same reopening constraints put on courses or businesses.

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6 hours ago, oikos1 said:

A golf cart with a single rider, if allowed to drive in the fairway and move directly to the ball, is always going to get to the golf ball before a walker at the same distance.  Always.

 

That is not always accurate, especially when it comes to getting from approach shot to the green.  Many course have the green side cart path at least 20-25 yards from the green.  So by the time you finish hitting your approach and put your club away and drive over to the path to park the cart, me the walker can walk in straight line right to the green with my bag.  Also I find walking easier to find stray tee shots.  I find it easier to remember the line of entry when I can walk straight from the tee box to the line of the ball.  When I have to walk tee box to cart I can lose track of the line the ball took.  Also some people that use carts tend to goof around on their phone, drink beer, and do other stuff that wastes time.

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8 hours ago, PhilsFanDrew said:

That is not always accurate, especially when it comes to getting from approach shot to the green.  Many course have the green side cart path at least 20-25 yards from the green.  So by the time you finish hitting your approach and put your club away and drive over to the path to park the cart, me the walker can walk in straight line right to the green with my bag.  Also I find walking easier to find stray tee shots.  I find it easier to remember the line of entry when I can walk straight from the tee box to the line of the ball.  When I have to walk tee box to cart I can lose track of the line the ball took.  Also some people that use carts tend to goof around on their phone, drink beer, and do other stuff that wastes time.

"Also some people that use carts tend to goof around on their phone, drink beer, and do other stuff that wastes time."

 

That's the point.  The cart, all things being equal, will always make a round faster (if it's cart path only then walking may be faster).   Leaving the tee, I drive a cart 250 yards, you walk 250 yards and we play ready golf.  I will be on the green reading my putt while you are still walking up.  Eventually I would be several holes ahead. 

 

When used efficiently, carts are definitively faster.  I have played 9 holes with another, each in our own cart, no one in front of us, in under 45 minutes.  You can't do that walking.  And to be clear, I totally support efficient walking.  However, I've seen plenty of walkers who dog it out there goofing around on their phone, walking off yardages, telling stories and other stuff that wastes time.

 

Alas, all things are not equal in golf.

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Off the tee, with out a doubt  yes.  Approaching the green and heading from the green to the next tee... not necessarily and usually no.    I guess the main difference is that off the tee is usually a much longer distance. Oops, just reiterated what was said above.

 

When using a cart I always hold my clubs in my hand and put them away when removing the next clubs for my next shots.  The guys who fiddle around behind their cart, watch the next players hit, write something down on their score card and then drive away drive me crazy.  

 

I just don't like golf carts so I'm biased.  

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