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Ambrose Competition

Explanation of the Ambrose variation on a scramble


Ambrose Competition
Eugene Gologursky/Stringer/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images

When you see a golf tournament (usually a charity tournament, association tournament or company outing) described as an Ambrose, Ambrose Competition, Ambrose Tournament or other variation of the name, that means it is a scramble in which a team handicap is used.

All players tee off, the best shot is selected and all players hit again from that same spot. The best second shot is selected, and all players hit from that same spot, and so on until the ball is holed.

But when the scramble is called an Ambrose, it means that handicaps are used in play, with a fraction of the combined handicaps of the teams members serving as one handicap for the team.

Here's how the Ambrose team handicap is usually determined (specifics can vary, always check with the tournament organizers):

  • If it's a 2-person scramble, the handicaps of the two team members are added together and divided by 4.
  • For a 3-person scramble, add all three individual handicaps and divide by 6.
  • For a 4-person scramble, divide the total by 8.

The arithmetic produces one group handicap which is used during play.

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