Charley’s Drop at the 17th

Once more back at the @RoseLadiesGolf event at @BrokenhurstGC and there were more than a few questions from members after the event about how Charley Hull was allowed to drop on the fairway side after finding the ditch from the 17th tee. These knowledgeable and alert members were questioning the decision because when the 2019 rule book was introduced this removed the opposite side relief option from the red penalty areas which were formally lateral water hazards.

The video explains:

Why Charley Hull was allowed to drop on the fairway side

So while Model Local Rule B-2 was in use to allow opposite side relief for this specific penalty area, it wasn’t required in this instance because the ball had crossed over the penalty area and then back in to it from the fairway side. This would not have been known without the ball spotters – if they hadn’t been there we would have needed to make the best estimate of where the ball last crossed in. The good news is that as long as this estimate is done using all available information there is no penalty even if subsequent information arises which demonstrates the estimate was very inaccurate.

2 thoughts on “Charley’s Drop at the 17th

  1. Hi Stuart, Thanks very much for the post. Just to completely clarify, based on the testimony of the ball spotter, the estimated ball entry route into the RPA on 17 is where I’m pointing with my clipboard in photo 1. This is the point where I assessed it had last crossed the RPA edge. The ball then hit into the bank slightly closer to the camera than where Charley is standing and bounced back into the centre of the stream,

    Another question that hasn’t been raised is where the edge of the RPA actually is. Thankfully we had a helpful temporary local rule that said: “Penalty Areas are indicated by red or yellow stakes. If not marked by a red or yellow line, the edge of the penalty area is where the ground breaks down.”

    Without this TLR there could possibly have been another query related to the edge of the RPA being a line between red stakes rather than where the ground broke down, although, if you recall this came up in our L3 on-course tuition. We were instructed that, where the intention was to follow the natural line and there was clearly a post missing, we should act as if it were there.

    All good stuff,



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