Which Golf Tournament Tee Off Format Should You Use?

Posted by GolfTournament.com on 12/22/2009 to Tournament Planning

The tee off method is normally based upon the size of the field and the time frame allowed by the golf course.  Many golf courses prefer to move multiple tournaments through the course depending on the day of the week. Be sure to ask the golf course tournament coordinator which option is best for your group prior to printing your marketing material.

Standard “First Hole” Tee Time
This option is good for small groups with less than 50 players. Each group tees off from the first hole at normal tee time intervals (8-10 minutes). There will be a corresponding lag in finishing times, so you must consider what the early finishers will do while they wait for dinner, prize presentations, etc.

Double Tee
Best for medium-sized groups (30-60). Groups tee off on first hole (play the 18 holes in normal sequence) and tenth hole (play the back nine first, then the front nine) at regular tee time intervals. This actually cuts the time to finish the round in half.

Full Field Shotgun

Best and most common option for large groups. The ideal number is 144 (two groups of four on each hole – i.e. #18A & #18B), but because of last minute dropouts and additions you may want to guarantee a minimum of 120 players. This will require the entire golf course to be clear so that each hole is available for play. Named “Shotgun Start” because players all over the course start at the same time, with the signal to start being given by a loud noise (gunshot, siren, etc.). Each players navigates the course in sequence and finish on the hole prior to the one they started on. This allows a large group to finish at approximately the same time.

Modified Shotgun
Good option for medium to large groups (60-120). Players start simultaneously as in a shotgun start but only occupy the number of holes required to accommodate the number of players playing. For example: 88 players starting at the same time might use holes 1 through 11.

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