Getting lucky is part of the Golf Handicap

We all live it. Golf and luck go hand in hand. Good and Bad. Hand in hand.

Think about those out of bound shots that hit a tree and land on the middle of the fairway. Those are the big breaks. But also think about small breaks like sinking in a 30 ft putt. Are those lucky putts?

But how is that included in the Golf Handicap System? 

You could argue that some players are luckier than others and they would have a lower handicap, but that doesn’t mean that they are better player. Or are they?

Well, I have always been intrigued by statistics, and luck is very much linked with statistics. I don’t want to talk about the big lucky/unlucky events, like hitting the flagstick on a perfect shot to end up in the water hazard. Or making a hole in one after hitting a tree (see the video attached at the end of this post). Those events are so rare that they are not relevant for statistics.

However, when talking, for example, about 30 feet putts those are linked to ability and not so much about luck like many believe. The key to this concept however is that what is linked to ability is the average conversion rate of those long putts, and not the isolated events.

For example, making a 30 ft putt depends on millimeters and a guess of speed and breaks. So making that single putt is luck. However, when you look at 100 tries of putts of 30 feet then you will see that ability comes in place.

What does this mean then for Single rounds vs Golf Handicap of a player?

So that means that for any single round, you score might have big swings because you got lucky on those long putts, and some other rounds you won’t. So your single rounds might not show your average ability, but how lucky you were to sink them in on that round.

What is difficult to explain is how you can get hot with the putter and sink a lot of those long ones. The better player you are the more likely those long putts conversion are going to get hot.

But this is all too nerdy, here is some fun!

Here is a link to some of the luckiest shots recorded in golf.

Enjoy your Golf!

Click Here to Watch some of the Luckiest Shots in Golf


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2 Responses to Getting lucky is part of the Golf Handicap

  1. Alfer Avila says:

    Will you incorporate uploading with blackberry? Or enabling to have the app for “BlackBerry” users?

    • TheGrinter says:

      Hello Alfer, unfortunately it is not in our near future plans. The Blackberry platform keeps changing and we have decided is not worth it to continue chasing it. However, you can still take a picture of your scorecard with your blackberry and send it to us to and we will upload it for you.