February 13, 2002

 Virginia PPA Newsletter Highlighting the 2002 Virginia PPA Tour

NOTICE TO ALL VIRGINIA TOURING PROS:
MAKE SURE YOU GET YOUR TOURING PRO MEMBERSHIP INTO THE PPA BEFORE FEBRUARY 28, 2002. THE VIRGINIA TOUR GETS SPOTS FOR THE WORLD PUTTING CHAMPIONSHIP BASED ON THE NUMBER OF TOURING PRO MEMBERSHIPS RECEIVED BY THAT DATE.

Enclosed in this newsletter, please find your schedule of tournaments for the Virginia tour for 2002. Schedules for the National tour are noted, as well as majors on other tours that count toward qualification for the Virginia State Championship. Please verify sites and dates for other tours with the host tours. The Virginia PPA tour is not responsible for changes made to schedules of these tours. If any changes to the Virginia tour are made you will be notified prior to those events. Let me encourage those of you who have Internet access to visit the Official Web Site of the Professional Putters Association, www.proputters.com. This site is your best source for information about PPA events.

Your tournament committee met January 12, 2002 to plan our tour for this year and report 2001 financial results. 2001 was a very good year for the Virginia tour with over $32,000 in prize money awarded! Again for 2002 a continuing effort among the different state tours to work together will benefit everyone. Our tour will offer some positive changes this year for everyone. These are detailed in this newsletter.

IF YOU DONíT READ ANY FURTHER, PLEASE READ THIS. MEMBERSHIP FEES MUST BE PAID TO THE PPA CORPORATE OFFICE AND YOUR NAME POSTED AS A MEMBER ON THE OFFICIAL WEB SITE OF THE PPA BY FRIDAY EVENING PRIOR TO ANY TOURNAMENT WEEKEND. IF YOUR FEE IS NOT PAID AND YOUR NAME NOT POSTED, THEN YOU WILL NOT BE ELIGIBLE TO PLAY IN THAT WEEKENDíS TOURNAMENTS. PLEASE DO NOT EXPECT TO PAY YOUR MEMBERSHIP FEES AT THE FIRST TOURNAMENT SITE. IF YOU DO YOU WILL NOT BE ABLE TO PLAY THAT WEEKEND.

Highlights for the 2002 Schedule

?span style="font:7.0pt "Times New Roman"">         4 Virginia/North Carolina co-sponsored 54 hole tournaments

?span style="font:7.0pt "Times New Roman"">         16 regular 54 hole tournaments

Major Events

?span style="font:7.0pt "Times New Roman"">         The Virginia Putting Classic (April 28)

?span style="font:7.0pt "Times New Roman"">         The Dogwood Festival Open (June 9)

?span style="font:7.0pt "Times New Roman"">         The Virginia Open (July 14)

?span style="font:7.0pt "Times New Roman"">         The Team Championship (September 14)

?span style="font:7.0pt "Times New Roman"">         The Match Play Championship (September15)

?span style="font:7.0pt "Times New Roman"">         The State Championship    (September 29)

?span style="font:7.0pt "Times New Roman"">         The Clayton Cup and Hancock Cup (October 26th and 27th)

General Rules of Play and Etiquette

All tournament play is governed by the rules as stated in the Official Rules and Regulations of the Professional Putters Association. As a member of the PPA and APA everyone pledges to ďkeep and uphold the rules and regulations of the PPA. Furthermore, to always strive to display excellent sportsmanship and good character while putting on a PPA sanctioned golf course?Also, under no circumstances, will play on any Putt-Putt Golf Course without paying all appropriate greens fees prior to commencing play: Understand that failure to abide by the content and spirit of the pledge will result in immediate disqualification from all future PPA/APA sanctioned events during this calendar year.?/p>

Please read through your NEW rule book when you receive it with your membership. As members of a professional organization, it is up to the integrity of the players to see that all rules are enforced. Of particular concern to the committee is the lack of respect for, and self enforcement of the rules pertaining to appropriate dress and conduct. There are several rules changes for 2002. Please become familiar with the rules.

As always please remember that you are responsible for your actions and that any acts of unsportsmanship will be dealt with swiftly. If an act of unsportsmanship occurs, the following procedure is in place to deal with the player involved.

  1. If you are playing with someone or observe someone that is continuing to act in an unsportsmanlike manner, seek out a tournament official or a committee member assigned to that tournament who is NOT playing at the time. Catch them as they finish a round or between rounds if the tournament is by shotgun start.
  2. The tournament official or the committee member will then inform the other committee members present and the player will be given a first warning.
  3.  If the player continues to display acts of unsportsmanship and it is observed by three committee members, then the player will be first fined $25. If another offense occurs, the player will be suspended for the next two Virginia State tournaments.

At each tournament site the course owner or course representative will act, if it is their desire, as the tournament official to make rulings during play and enforce any rules of sportsmanship and dress. In the event that the course does not wish to provide this service, then the committee which was elected by the players will serve. At each site there will be four committee representatives assigned to act as the tournament officials to collect entry fees, make pairings, make rulings during play, pay out prize money, record and report all tournament results, and be responsible for any remaining funds.

Please remember that we are playing as the invited guests of the local course owners and managers. Please take a moment when you arrive at a site and again before you leave to thank the owner or manager and staff for hosting our tournament.

Pairings for all tournaments

The defending champions, i.e. the winner of the last state tournament held at the site, will tee off first. The current State Champion will tee off second. All other players will be paired by luck of the draw except in tournaments designated as a major tournament. In all majors, the defending champion will tee off first followed by the State Champion. The highest player on the points standing entered in the tournament will be paired next, with the remaining players seeded and paired by points.

If you are a defending champion in either division (PPA or APA) please volunteer that information when you pay your entry fee to insure that you are appropriately paired.

Entry fees will be taken starting one hour and thirty minutes prior to tee off. A final call to pay entry fees will be made one hour prior to tee off. If you have not paid your entry fee by this time, please do so immediately.

If you are unable to pay your entry fee during the time designated and wish to play, give it to someone to pay for you. However, once an entry fee is paid it is not refundable without good reason and committee approval.

As soon as there are no players waiting to pay after the final call, entry fees will be closed and pairings for the tournament will be made. Once pairings have been completed a $5.00 late fee will be charged to any professional member who wishes to compete but has not entered. These players will then be paired at the bottom of the pairings. Any player failing to pay on time forfeits any standing he may have for a specific pairing.

If a player who has been practicing for a tournament fails to pay his entry fee on time, and then does not enter to avoid a late charge, that player will be assessed a $25 fine for violation of the rule regarding practice times, and be required to pay the appropriate greens fee to the local course.

As always there is a problem of slow play. While last year saw a better pace of play, there are a few hints to help speed up play that need to be observed.

1)       Be ready to play when your turn comes.

2)       If you are not on the tee, please give those who are in play a chance to putt without outside distractions.

Please familiarize yourself with the new rules in the Rule Book on slow play.

Qualifying for the World Putting Championship

The 2002 season offers a new opportunity for the Virginia Tour as well as all state tours. For all touring pros the World Putting Championship has been revived for the national tour. 128 spots will be available to all Touring Pros. There will be two 64 player brackets. 48 spots will be awarded in National events and 80 spots will be awarded by the different State tours. THE NUMBER OF SPOTS IN VIRGINIA WILL BE BASED ON THE NUMBER OF VIRGINIA TOURING PRO MEMBERSHIPS RECEIVED BY FEBRUARY 28, 2002. SEND YOUR MEMBERSHIP IN TODAY. IF YOU RESIDE IN A STATE OTHER THAN VIRGINIA MAKE SURE THAT YOU DESIGNATE VIRGINIA AS YOUR ďHOME?TOUR. PLEASE ALLOW AT LEAST ONE WEEK FOR YOUR MEMBERSHIP TO ARRIVE. DONíT WAIT UNTIL LATE FEBRUARY AND PUT YOUR APPLICATION AT THE MERCY OF THE USPS.

Based on 2001 memberships, it is estimated that Virginia will be able to offer about 15 spots for the WPC. A player may qualify two times for the WPC. Please check the enclosed schedule for tournaments that are designated as qualifying tournaments. This list is tentative and will be finalized after February 28, 2002.

Any pro, Touring Pro or club pro, may attempt to qualify at a designated state tournament by paying an additional $5 attempt to qualify fee. If the player qualifies, a $75 qualifying fee must then be paid. If the player qualifying is a club pro, then the player must also upgrade his membership to the Touring Pro level as stated in the National PPA newsletter. Once qualified, a player is guaranteed $50 in prize money if the player loses their first round match.

On the Virginia tour, Saturday tournaments will award the spot in an 18 hole single elimination match play event. The top eight players in the medal play tournament attempting to qualify will be seeded. If there is a tie for any final spots in match play, then a sudden death playoff will determine the final spots. Ties for seeding in the match play will go to the player who has the lower player number in the stroke play tournament. They will play down to one player for the spot. During Sunday tournaments the spot will go to the low medalist attempting to qualify. In the event that a player attempting to qualifies does not wish to claim the spot, (by failure to pay the qualifying fee of $75.00), then the next player attempting to qualify will be offered the spot. In the event there is a tie for the spot in a Sunday tournament, an 18 hole playoff will be used to decide the winner of the qualification spot.

Qualifying for the State Championship

Any player may play in the State Championship if he meets the following qualifications. A PRO must play in a minimum of 10 (ten) tournaments, excluding the Team Championships and Match Play Championship, and pay the entry fee for the State Championship, or he may pay the balance of entry fees due, to make up for tournaments missed, and pay the State Championship entry fee. An APA member must play in a minimum of 5 (five) tournaments and pay the State Championship entry fee, or he may pay the balance of the entry fees due to make up for tournaments missed and pay the State Championship entry fee.

Prize money in the State Championship for 2002 will be TBA. In the pro division, prize money will be paid to at least one half of the field. The State Championship will be in Charlottesville, Virginia in 2002 and in Lynchburg, Virginia in 2003.

Stroke Average Awards and Player of the Year Awards

Stoke averages will be kept using a weighted average method. The average of all scores in a division of play at each specific site will be used to rate the players by stroke average. For example, if at a site there are 20 players and the total strokes for a 54 hole tournament is 1800, then the average score for the tournament is 30.

Player one scores an 85. His stroke average is 28.33. His weighted stroke average is - 1.67. Player 2 scores 95. His stroke average is 31.67. His weighted stroke average is +1.67. Weighted stroke averages from each tournament will be added and averaged for a weighted stroke average.

To be eligible to win the stroke average award a pro must play in a minimum of 10 tournaments. An APA member must play in a minimum of 10 tournaments. All tournaments through the State Championship will count for official statistics.

The Player of the Year Award will be based on the following criteria:

?span style="font:7.0pt "Times New Roman"">         1 point will be awarded for each regular tournament (3 rounds) and the Match Play Championship

?span style="font:7.0pt "Times New Roman"">         3, 2, and 1 points for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd in the Majors. (4 or more rounds) 3 for 1st and 1 for 2nd for APA.

?span style="font:7.0pt "Times New Roman"">         5, 4, 3, 2, and 1 points for 1st through 5th in the following three statistical categories, stroke average, points and prize money won.

Point Standings

A point system, as used in previous years, will be used again in 2002. Points will be won and awarded according to place of finish in all tournament play. All players competing, regardless of their playing status, i.e. non Virginia tour regulars, will be awarded points. Points will be awarded in the following manner; all 54 hole tournaments will award 25 points for first place, 24 for second and so on down to one point for all finishers 25 to the last place. In the APA division of play, the points will start with 20 for first and one for 20th through last.

In all major tournaments, those tournaments that are four or more rounds, first place points will be 30 in the pro field and 25 in the APA. Second place will receive 25 in the pro and 20 in the APA and then increment down by one point for third to the end.

Virginia Open

The 2002 Virginia Open has been expanded to six rounds. Tee off will be 10am. After three rounds, groups will take a thirty minute break and then begin the final three rounds. There will be no repairing after three rounds.

State Championship Weekend

The Saturday tournaments will be played back to back. The morning tournament will begin with a shotgun start. The afternoon tournament will be straight tee off. The State Championship will be a straight tee off with three rounds in the morning, a break, and then three rounds in the afternoon. The order of play in the morning and the afternoon will be Novice, APA and PPA. This gives everyone equal time between morning and afternoon rounds.

Team Events

At all tournaments a team tournament will be held as well. Pros may enter a two man team for $10. First place will pay out $20 and second $10. All other entries will go to the Team Championship tournament in September. To be eligible for the Team Championship a Pro must have competed in at least six team tournaments or pay the difference. The APA Team Championship is an Open tournament. The entry fee for the Team Championship will be $100 per team for pros and $30 per team for APA. All prize money is TBA for the team championship.

The team championship will be a six round tournament. 2 rounds of better ball, 2 rounds of alternate stroke, and two rounds individual total scores.

We will not play a pro/am this year based on the low turn out last year.

Match Play Championship

In conjunction with the team championship weekend, the Virginia Tour will host the Virginia PPA Match Play Championship. This tournament will have PPA and APA division of play and is an OPEN tournament. The event will be 36 hole double elimination. The prize money will be based on entry fees with $100 added to the pro field and $25 in expense reimbursement added to the APA field. Entry fee is $50 for PPA and $10 for APA.

CLAYTON CUP and HANCOCK CUP Team

Congratulations go out again to the SC tour for their Clayton Cup victory in 2001 and to the NC APA Hancock Cup team for their victory as well. The 2002 Cup competition will be hosted this year by the North Carolina tour in Burlington, North Carolina.

Players will be asked to fill out a player declaration form which will be used to determine for which tour a player wishes to compete. If a player makes the team of his first choice, then that player must compete for that tourís team. A second choice may be used only if the player fails to qualify for the first choice team.

The following criteria will be used to determine the Clayton Cup team:

A point system will be used to determine the top players on the tour. This point system will use the points standings list mentioned above, money winning standings and relative stroke average. Points will be awarded in each of the three categories. First place will receive one point, second two, third three and so on through the top twenty. The points for all categories will then be added together. The players will then be ranked for Clayton Cup points will the lowest combined total being the leader. A player must compete in a minimum of 10 tournaments (8 for APA) to be eligible for the Clayton Cup team.

The top eight players on the Clayton Cup standings will make the team. Once those eight players are determined they will vote one player on the team. Once that player is in place, those nine will then vote for the final player spot. The ten team members will then vote for a captain who may be another player or a member of the team. The top six players in points will make the APA Hancock Cup team.

For the formation of the Clayton Cup and Hancock Cup teams, the final tournament that will count to tabulate those teams will be the State Championship. At this time the format for the Clayton Cup and Hancock Cup will be a two day event similar to 2001.

APA Old Dominion Cup

Congratulations to the Richmond team of Steve Jones, Jonathan Moore and Bill Garrett for winning the 2001 Old Dominion Cup.

 The format for the 2002 Old Dominion Cup will be new. APA players may form a two player team and compete for the Old Dominion Cup. The competition for the Old Dominion Cup will be part of the regular tour schedule. The tournament sites for Old Dominion Cup play are noted on the schedule. Remember, there is no added charge to form a team and compete.

Each team must register two players. Team members must compete in the designated tournaments.

The scores will be combined for the team total. The team with the lowest combined score at the end of each tournament will be awarded five points, 4 points for second and so on. Each team will receive at least one point. If a player is unable to compete at any tournament, then that team will not receive any points. Major tournaments the points will be doubled. The Team Championship will be the final tournament for the Old Dominion Cup competition and points will be awarded as a major.

Points from each tournament will be added. The team with the highest point total after all tournaments designated as an Old Dominion Cup event will win the 2002 Old Dominion Cup to be displayed at the teamís home course. In addition, each team member will receive a plaque or trophy designating them as a member of the winning team and a $ 25 expense reimbursement. If two or more teams tie for first place, then the State Championship will be used as a playoff.

If you are an APA member begin planning your team now. Talk it up with other players in your area and encourage them to form a team as well.

Entry Fees and Prize Money

There are some changes to the entry fees and prize money scale for the year 2002. Please refer to the enclosed tournament schedule and prize money breakdown when planning your schedule. The entry fee will be $45 at all 3 round tournaments in the pro field. Accordingly, please refer to the prize money breakdown for 2002. The change in entry fees is reflected in the pay out.

Committee Member Elections

For 2002 your tournament committee members are pros Gary Hinshaw, chairman, Ed Grajewski, statistician, Buddy Taylor, Dave Taylor, Mike Brown, class of 2002, and Brad Lebo, Peter Neumann and Darrell Anderson class of 2003. APA representatives are Jonathan Moore, Steven Jones class of 2002, and Amy Smith and Russell Johnson class of 2003. These members will serve through the State Championship.

At the State Championship we will elect new members. Any player who is eligible for the State Champions is eligible vote. Ed will remain as statistician and I will remain as course owner liaison. Three PPA members and two APA members will be elected and will serve a two year term. We will begin this year to elect three Pros and two APA members each year for two year terms.

I hope to see each of you April 6 in Fredericksburg. Best of Luck in 2002.

Gary Hinshaw
Virginia PPA Chairman

 

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