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World Handicap System: How to see the Course Ratings for any club in the world

There’s a one-stop shop delivering the key details for every course you might ever think to play under WHS
 

Many of us are one course loyalists – we play the majority of our golf at our home clubs and only rarely stray from its confines.

But there are also those who crave novelty, whether they want to tick off their favourites on ranking lists or just occasionally fancy somewhere new to tee it up.

The advent of the World Handicap System, which comes into force in the UK on November 2, brings an added edge for those who like to roam.

For the first time, we’ll be able to make our adventures count for handicap purposes. We’ll be able to put in an acceptable score that will remain on our record no matter where in the globe we play.

So, if you’ve ever wondered how your home course ranks – in terms of Course and Slope Rating – compared with your next holiday stop, or that bucket list layout you played last year, you can now find out.

The USGA holds a Course Rating and Slope Database with the key details of every rated course of which you could think and for all the respective tees.

As an example, let’s look at the course considered perhaps the toughest on the Open Championship rota: Carnoustie.

World Handicap System

With a Course Rating off the Open tees of 77.4 and a Slope rating of 143, it’s every bit as difficult as you’d think for both the scratch and bogey golfer – and thoroughly deserving of its ‘Carnasty’ nickname. And, at 135, it’s hardly a walk in the park off the yellows, either.

Have a scan yourself to look up your favourite courses…

Need more information on the World Handicap System?

Visit our dedicated WHS page where you will find everything you need to know and details of how to contact us if you have any more questions.

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Steve Carroll

Steve Carroll

A journalist for 25 years, Steve has been immersed in club golf for almost as long. A former club captain, he has passed the Level 3 Rules of Golf exam with distinction having attended the R&A's prestigious Tournament Administrators and Referees Seminar.

Steve has officiated at a host of high-profile tournaments, including Open Regional Qualifying, PGA Fourball Championship, English Men's Senior Amateur, and the North of England Amateur Championship. In 2023, he made his international debut as part of the team that refereed England vs Switzerland U16 girls.

A part of NCG's Top 100s panel, Steve has a particular love of links golf and is frantically trying to restore his single-figure handicap. He currently floats at around 11.

Steve plays at Close House, in Newcastle, and York GC, where he is a member of the club's matches and competitions committee and referees the annual 36-hole scratch York Rose Bowl.

Having studied history at Newcastle University, he became a journalist having passed his NTCJ exams at Darlington College of Technology.

What's in Steve's bag: TaylorMade Stealth 2 driver, 3-wood, and hybrids; TaylorMade Stealth 2 irons; TaylorMade Hi-Toe, Ping ChipR, Sik Putter.

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