The NCGA pace of play policy leaves the responsibility for maintaining the pace of play where it belongs, with you, the player. If you are the first group in the field, play efficient golf. If you are in a following group, keep up with the group in front of you and you will not have a pace of play issue. There are no warnings issued under this system.
Scorecards will have the expected time your group is to complete each hole. If you fall behind, you are expected to play efficient golf and get back into position. This might mean playing ready golf or continuous putting which are both allowed in stroke play. If available, atomic clocks will be stationed on holes #5, 9, 14, and 18 giving you the opportunity to check on your pace throughout the course.
Checkpoints: 9th and 18th Greens
There will be an official present on your 9th and 18th holes with whom you can check on your pace. The hole is considered complete when the flagstick is returned to the hole. If you are OUT OF POSITION (behind your allotted time and more than 14 minutes behind the preceding group) after finishing the 9th or 18th hole everyone in the group will be assessed a pace of play penalty. Pace of play penalties are to be added to the score on the 9th or 18th hole. No warnings are issued with this policy.
Out of Position:
First Group Only: If the lead group is behind its expected time after completing one checkpoint (9th or 18th hole) players will be notified and each player in the group shall add a ONE-STROKE PENALTY to his score for that hole. If they also pass the second checkpoint behind their expected time, each player shall add an additional TWO-STROKE PENALTY to his score for that hole. A group may appeal the penalty in the scoring area before surrendering their scorecards.
Subsequent Groups: If any subsequent group passes one checkpoint (9th or 18th hole) behind its expected time AND more than 14 minutes behind the preceding group, players will be notified and each player in the group shall add a ONE-STROKE PENALTY to his score for that hole. If they pass the second checkpoint behind their expected time AND more than 14 minutes behind the preceding group, each player shall add an additional TWO-STROKE PENALTY to his score for that hole. A group may appeal the penalty in the scoring area before surrendering their scorecards.
A player concerned about a slow player(s) in his group should first speak with the player(s) and encourage them to play more efficiently. Then, the concerned player may, before or after penalties are assessed, ask to have the group monitored. The individual player does not have to be identified; the request just needs to be made. At some point during the stipulated round, the group will be monitored. If a player is identified as holding up the pace of the group, penalties may be applied to that player and rescinded from the others.
Pace of Play penalties may be appealed to the Committee and must be made before scorecards are signed and returned. In order for an appeal to be considered, there must have been an action by the Committee, a circumstance beyond the player’s control, or some similar occurrence that contributed to the delay, such as an action by an individual member of the group. If a group receives a penalty for exceeding the pace of play for each nine, both penalties may be appealed, however, each appeal must be made and handled separately. Each appeal may result in a one step reduction of a penalty (i.e., three strokes to one stroke then one stroke to no penalty, but not three strokes to no penalty).