Saturday, April 28, 2007

Tigers Handicap

A friend of mine just sent this to me. Amazing!

Consider this...

If Tiger Woods played you, how many strokes would he be giving up to
make a fair match? The answer may shock you.

You may consider yourself a fine player with your 3 handicap. Or
perhaps you frequently play to your 15 handicap. You may even think that
Tiger Woods could spot you a stroke per hole and you'd have a close
match.

Turns out a stroke per hole would be about right if you were about a 3
handicap. And Tiger would still probably win.

The handicaps of our favorite PGA Tour pros remain a mystery. Sure, we
know they're in the "+" realm (which, oddly enough, means better than
scratch, but how far?

Calculations
PGA Tour courses don't have established ratings. Pros often play from
tees used only in PGA Tour events, the rough is grown extra long and
thick, and greens are sped and firmed up. Each of those changes has a
dramatic effect on the course rating and slope, making it difficult to
ascertain the true nature of a pro's handicap index.

Normally we apply a 0.96 multiplier to a person's average differential
in calculating handicaps. This is to help figure in the
"potential" of a player. A golfer with an un-adjusted handicap index of
5 becomes a 4.8 index after the 0.96 multiplier is applied. It would
make little sense, however, to take a plus-5 handicap to +4.8, so we
must instead divide by 0.96. That would make a +5 golfer a +5.2 golfer,
again figuring in the "potential."

At the Top: Tiger Woods
What does it take to be the top golfer in the world?
Here are the shocking figures:

Used | Date | Score | CR/Slope | Diff. | Tournament
> > * | 01/28/07 | 66 | 78.1/143 | 15.3 | Buick Invitational
> > * | 01/27/07 | 69 | 78.1/143 | 11.5 | Buick Invitational
> > | 01/26/07 | 72 | 78.1/143 | 7.7 | Buick Invitational
> > | 01/27/07 | 66 | 78.1/143 | 8.3 | Buick Invitational
> > * | 09/04/06 | 63 | 74.8/143 | 14.9 | Deutsche Bank
> > * | 09/03/06 | 67 | 74.8/143 | 9.9 | Deutsche Bank
> > | 09/02/06 | 72 | 74.8/143 | 3.5 | Deutsche Bank
> > * | 09/01/06 | 66 | 74.8/143 | 11.1 | Deutsche Bank
> > | 08/27/06 | 68 | 75.1/128 | 8.0 | WGC - Bridgestone Inv.
> > | 08/26/06 | 71 | 75.1/128 | 4.6 | WGC - Bridgestone Inv.
> > * | 08/25/06 | 64 | 75.1/128 | 12.6 | WGC - Bridgestone Inv.
> > | 08/24/06 | 67 | 75.1/128 | 9.2 | WGC - Bridgestone Inv.
> > * | 08/20/06 | 68 | 78.1/151 | 13.5 | PGA Championship
> > * | 08/19/06 | 65 | 78.1/151 | 17.5 | PGA Championship
> > * | 08/18/06 | 68 | 78.1/151 | 13.5 | PGA Championship
> > * | 08/17/06 | 69 | 78.1/151 | 12.2 | PGA Championship
> > | 08/06/06 | 66 | 74.3/133 | 9.8 | Buick Open
> > | 08/05/06 | 66 | 74.3/133 | 9.8 | Buick Open
> > | 08/04/06 | 66 | 74.3/133 | 9.8 | Buick Open
> > | 08/03/06 | 66 | 74.3/133 | 9.8 | Buick Open

Average Differential: 10.6
Best 10 Average Differential: 13.2
Handicap Index: +13.75
Now, take a deep breath and read that again. +13.75. Tiger's WORST ten
differentials average out to +8.05.

Something like 10% of golfers ever reach single digit handicaps.
Tiger's not only done that (while still in the womb, no doubt), but he's
blown through the single digits on the OTHER side of scratch and is in
heretofore unexplored territory at +13.75. That may be the single best
handicap index ever!

8 comments:

Anonymous said...

Great post!

Jam Boy said...

I heard about this statistic the other day and I'm so glad I could get some confirmation. I think that's the most amazing thing I've ever heard. I mean, I knew those guys played on a different level, sure, but I had no idea it was THAT different.

Add in playing in front of thousands of people and a big check on the line and that becomes one crazy statistic.

Speedcat Hollydale said...

I will take him on..... :-)
The Speedcat wooppes the Tiger, news at 9:00

I'll just use my sanbaggin` 34 handicap!

Speedcat Hollydale

Anonymous said...

Formulas you use are dead wrong.

Differentials are

(SCORE - Rating) * 113 / SLOPE

Regardless if the scores are under or over par.

ALSO, you ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS multiply by 0.096 after adding up the 10 lowest. You took a lot of liberties with this that are not true.

Tiger is a +8.1 using the scores you mention calculated properly. Still awesome though.

Anonymous said...

Listen, I mean - great article. Fascinating stuff. I have like a 10 handicap and I still have trouble believing that Tiger is going to whoop my ass by more than 10-15 strokes. The courses that the pros play on the PGA tour are in WAY better condition than the course I play on. I don't care about firm fairways and all that bunk, at least your fairways don't have dirt spots with no relief. !!!

djp said...

I am maintaining Tiger's Handicap Report per USGA Handicap Calculation Standards at http://www.score18.com/tiger.php. It is now approximately +7.8 as of June 2008.

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