Barracuda Championships: Stableford system explained

The Barracuda Championships are the only PGA Tour event played on the Stableford System of scoring

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August 03, 2015: This week’s Barracuda Championship is the only PGA TOUR event that uses the Modified Stableford scoring format, which encourages aggressive play. Combine the format with Reno’s altitude — which allows the ball to travel farther — and fans can expect to see plenty of birdies.

Unlike traditional scoring methods, where the aim is to have the lowest score, the objective in a Modified Stableford tournament is to have the highest score. Geoff Ogilvy set a scoring record last year at +49 points.

POINTS STRUCTURE

Modified Stableford awards points based on the number of strokes taken at each hole. Scoring at the 2015 Barracuda Championship will look like this:

• Double Eagle: 8 points
• Eagle: 5 points
• Birdie: 2 points
• Par: 0 points
• Bogey: -1 point
• Double Bogey or more: -3 points

PLAYING STRATEGY

The strategy in Modified Stableford formats can, in most instances, be summed up in three words: Go for it. This scoring format will reward risk-taking on the golf course.

For instance, if the professional is facing a carry over water that he normally wouldn’t try, the Modified Stableford format presents an incentive to go for it. A birdie is worth twice as many positive points (2) as a bogey is worth punitive points (-1). Eagles offer huge payoffs (5 points) and the worst a player could possibly do would be a double bogey (-3 points) at which point he could pick up his ball and carry on to the next hole.

Those golfers who make a few bogeys but also make a lot of birdies or eagles are more likely to be atop the leaderboards.

Source: PGA TOUR

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