In this series of articles on Abnormal Course Conditions, we will be talking today about Ground Under
Defining Ground Under repair
Most of the time, a committee will identity areas of GUR by putting down a white line around the area.
Some other time we may see ropes or stakes.
We must also accept that damaged grass and ground may be normal on certain courses while a little bit of
damages at Augusta will be marked GUR or it will be fixed right away.
Area of GUR not marked
– A hole where a stake has been removed.
– The hole of a double green being used for the play of another hole.
– Hole made in removing turf or a tree stump.
– Grass cuttings, leaves and any other material piled for later removal.
But when the ball is sitting in a pile of grass cutting in the woods, probably that pile will never be removed. A free relief would not be granted.
Areas needing to be approved before a free relief
– Tire marks: When a ball lies in tire marks, the free relief is not automatic. It depends on the size
of the marks.
– Bad lie in the rough: Unless marked, there is no such a thing as a bad lie in the rough. At least this is what I always tell players asking for a free relief for a bad lie in the rough. What is not ground under repair.
– Grass wear
– Damages in a penalty area
– Tree stump
– Fallen tree
A committee may, by implementing a local rule, identify areas as ground under repair. As an example, a
big tree that fell overnight in the fairway. Or a bunker full of water or any other damages.
During most of the PGA Tour event, they have a local rule saying the spectators cross over in fairways are
At Golf Quebec, we have a local rule saying that a player may get a free relief if his ball lies in seams of cut