can win cash as a hole-in-one prize?
By COLIN FARQUHARSON
When the US Duramed Futures Tour announced that a Norwegian AMATEUR, Benedikte Grovtvedt, had won $500 for a hole in one at their weekend tournament, I thought it had to be a mistake. I amended the Futures Tour Press Release published on Kirkwoodgolf.co.uk to read that she had received a $500 voucher.
At the same time I sent off an E-mail to the organisers of the Futures Tour, pointing out their "mistake."
When the Futures Tour Newsletter on Monday repeated the statement that the Norwegian amateur had received $500 in cash for her hole in one, I fired off another E-mail across the Atlantic to the Futures Tour people, pointing out that in no circumstances can amateurs be given money as a prize.
Back came the following E-mail message:
"Colin, Under the USGA rules, she was eligible to receive cash prizes up to $750 for a hole in one. Our director of tournament operations, Christy Barks looked it up before declaring her a winner of the money."
So, hastily eating a large slice of humble pie, I had to admit that I was not aware that the Rules of Amateur Status as far as hole in one prizes are concerned are different in the States.
I apologised to the Futures Tour for showing my ignorance of that fact.
Reader Alasdair J Malcom has come up with another answer to my original question:
Reference your poser regarding the accepting of prize money by amateurs.
I think I am right in saying that an amateur can compete in an event where there are cash prizes for professionals as long as the amateur nominates, prior to taking part, a charity to which any prize money gained by him will go, and complying with this would not affect the player's amateur status.
Alasdair J. Malcolm
Rules expert Gillian Kirkwood confirms this:
Yes. It's Decision 3-1/6.
Labels: RULES OF GOLF