New Rules of Golf in 2019, part 10: DROPPING!

Hi all.

This is part 10 (of 31) in a series of blogs about some of the proposed changes to the Rules of Golf, planning to take effect January 1st 2019:

The Rules of Golf about dropping the ball is changed a lot in the 2019-proposal! Let us take a look at it.

10.1. The way to drop.
The Rules of Golf as of today (Rule 20-2a) states, that you must…:

  1. … stand erect…
  2. … hold the ball in shoulder height…
  3. … at arm’s lenght…
  4. …and let the ball drop (i.e. not spin it etc.).

In the 2019-Rules of Golf you don’t need to do all that. You just have to hold the ball a bit over the surface and let it drop. You don’t have to stand erect, or to have the ball at arm’s length in shoulder height.

It is recommended, that you drop from at least one inch in the air.

Thus, you are allowed to:

  1. Squat when dropping.
  2. Have your arm bend, when dropping.

This is probably the most discussed change. Why not just allow, that the ball is placed? The argument is, that there must be a little uncertainty as to where the ball ends – this is considered most fair.

10.2. Re-drop.
The very difficult Rules about re-dropping we have today (Rule 20-2c), are changed!

Today you must re-drop in a number of situations e.g. when the ball…:

  1. … rolls and comes to rest more than two club-lenghts from where the ball first struck the course in the drop.
  2. … rolls into and comes to rest in a bunker.
  3. … rolls into and comes to rest in a water hazard.
  4. … rolls into and comes to rest on a Putting Green.
  5. … rolls nearer the hole than the nearest point of relief.
  6. Etc!

In the proposal to the new 2019-Rules of Golf, you must drop the ball in AND play the ball from a relief area.

In other words: You simply – and only – have to re-drop, when the ball lands outside this area in the drop, or if it lands inside the area but rolls (and comes to rest) outside. This new Rule seems really smart and usable.

10.3 Example (where to drop).
When you have deemed your ball unplayable, and choose to drop on “the straigth line” (see the blog about the unplayable ball options under the new 2019-Rules of Golf), then the relief-area is “the straight line” plus 20 inches to each side.

You simply have to drop the ball in this relief area and to play it from there.

10.4 Examples (where re-drop is required).
Below is an example, where you are required to re-drop under the 2019-proposal to new Rules of Golf:

  • If you drop exactly on “the straight line”, when deeming the ball unplayable and taking relief, and the ball then rolls 30 inches perpendicular away from this linje. You must re-drop, since the ball ended 10 inches outside the relief area.

10.5 Examples (where re-drop is not required/allowed)

Below are two examples where you are not required/allowed to re-drop under the 2019-proposal to new Rules of Golf:

  • If you drop exactly on the “straight line” and it then rolls 30 inches alongside this line (no matter in which direction). You must not – and is not allowed to – re-drop, since the ball was dropped in – and ended in – the relief area.
  • You drop 10 inches perpendicular left from the “straight line” and it rolls 25 inched perpendicular right. You must not – and is not allowed to – re-drop, since the ball was dropped in – and ended in – the relief area (ended 35 inches from the left side and 5 inches from the right side).

10.6 Re-drop again and again?
Under the present Rules of Golf, you shall re-drop only one time; after that (rather than re-dropping again) you must place the ball on the spot, where the ball first struck the course in the re-drop. This to prevent you from re-dropping again and again and again.

The proposed Rules seems more complex/unclear. If the ball ends outside the relief area, you have to re-drop. If it happens again you have to re-drop again at another place within the relief area. And if it happens again you must try again. And again. Apparently there is no limit to the number of re-drops. This is quite simple. But… if you cannot find another place in this area, there is a (not precisely described) possibility for you to place the ball within the relief area. Hopefully this will be described better in the final draft to the proposed new Rules.




OVERVIEW: 31 blogs about the proposal to new 2019-Rules of Golf.

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  3. BethanyBfn says

    My friend and I went camping the other day. It was a tiring experience, as he wouldn’t let me sleep all night. He kept talking about random subjects and cried about his anxiety. I totally told him to source and deal with it.

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