Results of Poll

The results for the recent poll regarding the use of USGA handicaps are summarised below. The majority of players (81%) have voted for the use of USGA handicaps for ALL games. So starting 1st January 2014 Loose Cannons will be adopting the use of players’ official USGA handicaps for all Loose Cannons games. So no more cuts for the winner and runner up as a win should be reflected in a cut in the handicap via the online USGA system we now use.

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Review of GolfSoftware Online Handicap System

We have been testing the online handicap system from GolfSoftware.com now for the last 6 weeks on a 60 day free trial basis. This online system provides an easy to use and comprehensive handicap management system for a large group of golfers. The advantage of this online system is the ability to have a number of Admins who can update and input golfer information and scores and is not dependent on a single computer installation of the software. Also it allows all golfers in the group to access their golfing scores and statistics and print out their updated USGA handicap which is obviously very useful when playing at other groups or golf courses who require an “official” handicap card.

A brief overview is given below about the system. For full details of the Handicap System you can read here: http://www.golfsoftware.com/products/hs/online-golf-handicap-tracker.aspx

Course Information

The GolfSoftware system has a large database with detailed course information. There are already many golf courses in Malaysia on the system with full details of rating and slope for each course and each tee position.
However if the course is not in the system you can add or edit courses with all the relevant hole distances, par, index and course rating and slope.

Golfers

Up to 100 golfers can be entered into the system so individual golfer information and scores can be maintained. Different rosters can be used so for example you may have different groups that you manage so the system can handle this. In our case I have an active Loose Cannons roster with an additional roster for players who are not active.

Individual scores can be entered for each player with course played, date and gross score. Once player information and scores are entered you can calculate the handicaps of all players (or individuals) on a routine automatic basis or d this calculation manually by clicking one button.

Handicap Calculation

The handicaps are calculated using USGA rules and the calculation is as follows:

1. Handicap Setup is as follows …
The table below is used to determine the number of handicap differentials to use :
Number of Acceptable Scores Differential(s) to be Used
5 or 6 Lowest 1
7 or 8 Lowest 2
9 or 10 Lowest 3
11 or 12 Lowest 4
13 or 14 Lowest 5
15 or 16 Lowest 6
17 Lowest 7
18 Lowest 8
19 Lowest 9
20 Lowest 10
Stuart has 20 scores so the highlighted parameters are used to determine which scores to use for handicapping
2. The Differentials for these scores are calculated…
Date Adjusted Grs Score Score Type Course Played Tee Course Rating Course Slope Differential Used
9/3/2013 96 Bukit Kemuning White 70.5 115 25.1
8/27/2013 90 Staffield Resort – N&S Course White 70.7 128 17.0 Used
8/20/2013 97 Port Klang Golf Resort Blue 72.3 126 22.2
8/13/2013 95 Bukit Tinggi Golf & Country Club White 68.4 129 23.3
8/6/2013 96 IOI Palm Garden Blue 70.2 128 22.8
7/30/2013 91 Tropicana E1/W3 White 70.2 126 18.7 Used
7/23/2013 93 KGSAAS White 69.0 128 21.2 Used
7/16/2013 90 Kota Permai Golf & Country Club White 72.0 113 18.0 Used
7/9/2013 89 Bukit Unggul Country Club White 70.5 115 18.2 Used
7/2/2013 95 Rahman Putra White 71.9 129 20.2 Used
5/28/2013 96 Staffield Resort – N&S Course White 70.5 115 25.1
5/21/2013 87 Bukit Kemuning White 70.5 115 16.2 Used
5/14/2013 92 Saujana Impian G. & C.C. White 70.5 115 21.1 Used
4/29/2013 92 IOI Golf Resort White 67.7 112 24.5
4/16/2013 94 KGSAAS White 69.0 128 22.1
4/11/2013 97 Orna – East/West Course White 70.5 115 26.0
4/2/2013 94 Bukit Unggul Country Club White 70.5 115 23.1
3/12/2013 86 KRTU White 71.0 130 13.0 Used
3/5/2013 95 Saujana Impian G. & C.C. White 70.5 115 24.1
2/26/2013 86 Bukit Unggul Country Club White 70.5 115 15.2 Used
The equation for calculating a differential is …
Diff = (Adjusted Gross Score – Rating) X (113 / Slope)
3. Use the differentials to calculate a USGA Index
Differentials ‘used’ are added together…
178.8 = 17.0 + 18.7 + 21.2 + 18.0 + 18.2 + 20.2 + 16.2 + 21.1 + 13.0 + 15.2
Then divide the total number used
Average differentials = 178.8 / 10  = 17.880
Multiply average by 96%.
USGA Index = 17.880 x 0.96         USGA Index = 17.1 (Digits after tenths place are deleted)
Final USGA Index = 17.1

Individual golfers have the ability to review their scores online and download a copy of their handicap card for printing.

Reporting

Many useful statistical reports can be generated to track player performance and current handicaps. For example the table below shows the Most Improved Golfer over a specific period of time. Custom reports can also be designed for your won use.

Online Files

There is also a facility for uploading files onto the system to share with all golfers. For our group I have uploaded the weekly results for reference as well as the current updated Loose Cannons master spreadsheet with all the player info and handicaps. I also have prepared some user notes for the running of the online system and the updating procedure for the spreadsheet.
E-Mail/Message
There is a utility to be able to mass e-mail all the players in the roster or message them which is useful for the routine sharing of information or sending updates.
Summary

I believe that this online web system from GolfSoftware is an ideal method to track all our golfing activities and importantly calculate an official USGA handicap for all players on a routine basis. In this way there can be no arguments on anyone’s handicap. because it is an online system it is easily accessible by all players and the Admins who will run the system therefore not relying on a single person or single software installation on someone’s computer.
There is a web based system (the system we have been testing) or a desktop system. The advantage of the web based system is easy access from many different computers, iPads, iPhones, etc and access by many people. There are different pricing schemes depending on how many golfers to be managed – we would need the 50-100 golfer system.
The annual cost for a 100 player web based handicap system is 240USD and I would recommend to the group that we commit to this system for our routine ongoing handicap monitoring and player management.

Most Improved Golfer at Loose Cannons

The new USGA online software system we are currently testing to calculate our group’s handicaps on a regular basis is going very well and I believe that this is now reflecting the true handicap of each player and results in a fairer and more accurate system for our weekly games. Over and above the handicap calculation the system provides a large number of reports which are useful for tabulating results or statistics.

Below, for example, is an interesting table showing the Most Improved Golfer … in this case calculated over the last 6 months. Congratulations to Allan McNicoll for achieving this honour reflected again yesterday with his win at Bukit Kemuning.

I will be posting a summary of the new online handicap system in the next few days so we can make a collective decision to go ahead and purchase the system to use on a regular basis.

Revised USGA Handicapping System

After much previous debate it was decided to try and implement the successful handicap system that Mike Smith ran by calculating a USGA handicap then basing the Loose Cannons playing handicap capped on 3 above this USGA handicap.

I looked at Mike Smith’s existing software as well as the spreadsheets containing all the data. I also started to test a new online web based handicap system which my be a better option going forward. The  results and review so far are as below.

After a few weeks of testing this system we can decide if we wish to proceed with this annual paid system – so far the results are very good with realistic handicaps now for everyone and from the results of the first game using this system at Tropicana on 30th July 2013 the spread of scores look better with no 50 point wins …. this should make it a fairer opportunity for all players at all levels to compete and stand a chance of winning.

Loose Cannons Scoring Spreadsheet
I spent quite a number of days reviewing the Loose Cannons scores in the various spreadsheets from Mike Smith as of 15/11/2012 and the sheets that Ray Funnell has used since that time. I have taken all the score from 2013 for everyone plus the scores from 2012 from August to December and created a new and hopefully clearer spreadsheet. The older spreadsheets appear to have missing score data prior to August 2012 and also have extra columns, added rows for formatting – I have simplified this in the new spreadsheet allowing ease of use and ease of sorting by names or any other column.
The new spreadsheet has all scores input from August 2012 to date. The column titled USGA Handicap is a new calculated handicap based on a new online system I am currently testing (see below). These calculated handicaps are based on all scores from 2013 and if needed some scores from 2012. For those players who have not enough scores I have used the previous USGA handicap as calculated by Mike Smith in 15/11/2102 or they are blank as they have not played sufficient games.
Ray – I would suggest you use these handicaps for the next game at Tropicana. I will update this sheet on a weekly basis as well as generating weekly revised USGA handicaps. Please note they the Loose Cannons Handicap is capped at 3 above the calculated USGA Handicap. In the spreadsheet the capped scores are in bold/red under the KLLC Handicap column.
Handicapping Software
I have tried to get Mike Smith’s handicap application to work – this is essentially an Excel spreadsheet system with Macros to run the various calculations. I have loaded this but unfortunately the various calculations and input routines do not work due to runtime errors which I feel is due to the incompatibility between Excel versions and perhaps the older version of the software that Mike Smith has. I feel this may be a good time to review what we use and perhaps go for a new online system which will not have these problems.
I have looked at many systems that can be used for handicap calculations – we of course need one that can calculate handicaps for a large group – we have around 80 names on the Loose Cannons database list although only about 20-30 are really active. One system I am testing right now and seems to be excellent is from www.golfsoftware.com which has both a desktop and a web based system. The desktop version is a Windows only application and would need one Administrator to enter all scores and generate all reports as well as printing handicap cards, etc. I am testing the web based system where all data is input online and all USGA calculations can be done based on the past scores input. There are comprehensive reports that can be generated and you can easily customise your own reports. Handicap cards can be printed by the Admin as well as any individual golfer. All golfers will have access to this online system so they can loo up their scores, print reports and print their own handicap card. We can assign a few key people as admins to input scores and manage the system. I will be sending out details by e-mail to everyone later with how to access this system. I will be passing out handicap cards for everyone next week based on scores from August 2012 to date.
I have this system on a 60 day free trial after which time we can decide to purchase. I would recommend we go for the online versions as this gives us greater flexibility, ease of updated versions and access by al golfers from any computer at anytime. The online web system is pieced based on the no of golfers:
1-25 golfers $96 per year
26-50 golfers $144 per year
51-100 golfers $240 per year
We currently have 80 golfers on our list although there are less than 50 golfers really active.
I would propose we discuss over the coming weeks after you see the system working and decide if we want to commit to this system
I have already input all scores for everyone from Aug 2012 to present and have generated handicaps for everyone (except those without sufficient scores.) 
Below is a sample handicap calculation for myself for reference on the calculations used:
Stuart Taylor – How USGA Index is calculated.
1. Handicap Setup is as follows …
The table below is used to determine the number of handicap differentials to use :
Number of Acceptable Scores Differential(s) to be Used
5 or 6 Lowest 1
7 or 8 Lowest 2
9 or 10 Lowest 3
11 or 12 Lowest 4
13 or 14 Lowest 5
15 or 16 Lowest 6
17 Lowest 7
18 Lowest 8
19 Lowest 9
20 Lowest 10
Stuart has 20 scores so the highlighted parameters are used to determine which scores to use for handicapping
2. The Differentials for these scores are calculated…
Date Adjusted Grs Score Score Type Course Played Tee Course Rating Course Slope Differential Used
7/23/2013 93 KGSAAS White 69.0 128 21.2
7/16/2013 90 Kota Permai Golf & Country Club White 72.0 113 18.0 Used
7/9/2013 89 Bukit Unggul Country Club White 70.5 115 18.2 Used
7/2/2013 95 Rahman Putra White 71.9 129 20.2 Used
5/28/2013 96 Staffield Resort – N&S Course White 70.5 115 25.1
5/21/2013 87 Bukit Kemuning White 70.5 115 16.2 Used
5/14/2013 92 Saujana Impian G. & C.C. White 70.5 115 21.1
4/29/2013 92 IOI Golf Resort White 67.7 112 24.5
4/16/2013 94 KGSAAS White 69.0 128 22.1
4/11/2013 97 Orna – East/West Course White 70.5 115 26.0
4/2/2013 94 Bukit Unggul Country Club White 70.5 115 23.1
3/12/2013 86 KRTU White 71.0 130 13.0 Used
3/5/2013 95 Saujana Impian G. & C.C. White 70.5 115 24.1
2/26/2013 86 Bukit Unggul Country Club White 70.5 115 15.2 Used
2/19/2013 99 Templer Park Country Club White 70.5 115 28.0
2/5/2013 86 Nilai Springs – P&M Course White 70.5 115 15.2 Used
1/29/2013 92 The Club @Bukit Utama White 72.0 120 18.8 Used
1/22/2013 89 Perangsang Templer White 69.6 130 16.9 Used
1/15/2013 95 Tropicana White 72.0 120 21.7
1/8/2013 90 KGSAAS White 69.0 128 18.5 Used
The equation for calculating a differential is …
Diff = (Adjusted Gross Score – Rating) X (113 / Slope)
3. Use the differentials to calculate a USGA Index
Differentials ‘used’ are added together…
170.2 = 18.0 + 18.2 + 20.2 + 16.2 + 13.0 + 15.2 + 15.2 + 18.8 + 16.9 + 18.5
Then divide the total number used
Average differentials = 170.2 / 10  = 17.020
Multiply average by 96%.
USGA Index = 17.020 x 0.96         USGA Index = 16.3 (Digits after tenths place are deleted)
Final USGA Index = 16.3

Loose Cannons Handicaps – 8th March 2010

The table below summarises everyones current Loose Cannons playing handicaps for everyones reference. I will be working on putting together a new table which will summarise scores and handicaps to be published after every game for ease of tracking by each player. If anyone has a dispute with regard to their current handicap please refer this to Raymond Keys for verification.

Name Handicap
Alan Holgate 31
Alex Lee 29
Allan Wright 27
Andrew Robinson 12
Arthur Wilson 29
Barry Cousins 25
Bernard Romahn 28
Bill Wang 18
Dave Kelly 13
David Hughes 12
Deren Akinci 19
Dick Stauffer 22
Erol Akinci 21
Glen Wombwell 30
Hans Berger 19
Ian Craighead 21
Ian Geekie 25
Joe Zorich 6
John Preston 19
Julien Hodson-Walker 21
Kevin Wiggins 11
Klaus Kretzschmar 24
Len Briddon 31
Mark Baker 17
Michael Hughes 31
Mike Fay 17
Mike Han 11
Mike Smith 18
Paul Atkinson 14
Paul Hobbs 31
Peter Edgworth 19
Peter Jackson 30
Ray Funnell 21
Raymond Keys 22
Rein Li Tan 25
Richard Moss 29
Rick Brown 23
Roger Smith 19
Stuart Taylor 15
TB Ong 16
Thong Chee Who 21
Tony Morris 12
Vincent Vijayan 22
Yoong 10