The relief for a cart path is not well understood, and I see many professional players having trouble figuring out how to do it. Most of the golfersdon ’t know how to do itproperly.
This week, we will talk aboutthe OBSTRUCTIONS. In a few week, I will explain how to actually take relief.
Difference between a movable and immovable obstruction
An obstruction is any artificial object. An obstruction is MOVABLE when it can be moved with reasonable effort and without damaging the obstruction or the course.
The competitors must always read the local rules and notices to players to find out if some artificial objects have a special status. (Integral part, immovable, TIO, boundarieobjects,etc)
The most common immovable obstruction is the cart path. Boundarie objects are not obstructions and we can’t have a free relief. (Out of Bounds fences, White stakes, Out of Bounds Walls, etc).
A Committee may also say that an artificial object is Integral part. A player is not allowed to have a free relief. At the Road Hole in St-Andrews, the players must play the ball where it lies when the ball is on the road, or when the ball is near the Club House.
In certain cases, a players will get free relief also for the line of sight. When a ball lies inside 2 club-lenght from a sprinkler head and the sprinkler head is less than 2 club-length from the green and both are on short grass, a player will get relief for the line of play. This can be seen also for backstops or nets in a Driving Range.
Rakes are movable obstructions. We may remove the rake anytime and when the ball moves, we don’t have a penalty if we replace the ball.
Sometimes, a Committee will declare a movable obstruction as being immovable. As an example, a scoring table behind the last hole is easily movable but a Committee may declare the table as being immovable. A player is still allowed to have a free relief.
ATTENTION: We must know the difference between a movable obstruction and a loose impediment. If we remove a loose impediment (leaf, branch, etc) and the ball moves, we will have a one-stroke penalty.
Temporary Movable Obstruction (TIO)
These obstructions are in most cases temporary. (Grandstands, Publicity signs, tv towers, etc). We may consider them as immovable obstruction or as TIOs. When the TIO is on our line of sight to the hole, we get relief from the TIO even if it is far away.
The notice to players will give the list of all the TIOs.