ALD Rules

Amateur Long Drive™ Championship Series Rules and Guidelines

Please note: Changes were made (and clarifications were added) to these rules and guidelines on September 1, 2018 regarding eligibility, licensing, division ages, and qualifying…and on September 28th regarding Trial Memberships.

Eligibility

Any amateur of any age or ability is eligible for ALD™ competition. Professional long drive competitors are not allowed to compete with amateurs,  but may perform in exhibition rounds.

Beginning September 1, 2018 any competitor who has competed as a professional in any golf competition may not compete for points in any ALD™ competition until they have regained amateur status via the USGA. Proof of amateur status will need to be presented upon registration by any former professional. Professionals awaiting (that have applied for) reinstatement may enter events, but points will not be awarded for any events played as a professional. 

The USGA rules concerning professional competition are widely misunderstood. If one has competed as a professional, whether or not prize money was received that competitor is “officially” a professional. The USGA considers the length of time since professional competition and prize money earned (among other factors) in determining the waiting period for reinstatement. In the case where there’s been a considerable length of time (multiple years) since professional competition…. and no prize money won, reinstatement could be immediate. If one competed last week as a professional….and won no money, the waiting period could be one year or more. For information regarding amateur status reinstatement please refer to this USGA page HERE. To speak to someone at the USGA about your specific situation, contact the USGA Amateur Status Department at (908) 326-1025 or [email protected] .

ALD™ Membership / License Required to Register for Events

All competitors must be ALD™ members and hold a current ALD™ Full Competition License to accumulate World Ranking Points, League Ranking Points, and to be eligible to transfer to the World Championship. The annual license renews on September 1 each year. Competition license may be purchased online (HERE on this website) or at the event. Event purchases will include a temporary card and license number. Permanent cards with a unique competition number will be mailed to competitors.

Trial Membership

We offer a “Trial” membership at no charge that will allow the registrant to participate in only one (A SINGLE) league event. No points are awarded to Trial Members. Trial Members may not compete in Regional Majors.

Pathway To The World Championship

Competitors may qualify for the ALD™ World Championship via World Ranking Points,  League Competition, and / or Major Qualifiers.

League Competition

ALD™ Championship Series leagues operate in multiple territories across the U.S. and abroad. Competitors will compete for regional, national, and world ranking points. Current ALD™ Leagues: North  Florida; Coastal Carolina; New England; SC Midlands; Western Carolinas; Minnesota / Iowa; and Utah / Nevada. Additional Leagues to be announced.

Major Qualifying Events

There are four (4) Regional Major Qualifiers: Eastern (date and location TBD); Central – Jefferson City Missouri June 15th, 2019; Western (date and location TBD); and the Last Chance Qualifier (LCQ) Myrtle Beach, August 15, 2019.

Divisions

ALD™ divisions shall include Youth Male, Youth Female, Junior Male, Junior Female, Open Male, Open Female,  Senior Male, Senior Female,  Super Senior Male, and Super Senior Female

Effective Age

The effective age for competition in any division is based upon your age on the day of competition. When your age changes, your base division changes.

Veteran / Military  Division

There will be a Veteran / Military division for both male and female Adult, Senior, and Super Senior at the Regional Qualifiers and the World Championship Event. To compete as a Veteran, competitors must be current or former Unites States Military.

Adaptive Long Drive Division

There will be Adaptive Long Divisions for both male and female competitors at the Regional Qualifiers and World Championship.

Division Ages

Youth 13 and under Junior  14 to 17 is the official age range. Youth ages may also compete in this division. Open 18 to 45 is the official age range. Youth, Juniors, Seniors, and Super Seniors may also compete in this division. Senior 46 to 59 is the official age range. Super Seniors may also compete in this division. Super Senior 60+

Equipment

Golf clubs must appear on the United States Golf Association USGA® Conforming List. Clubs on the USGA® Non-conforming list will not be allowed. Golf clubs must conform to the USGA® Rules of Golf (appendix ll, 1c), which limits golf club length to a maximum of forty-eight inches (48”). All competitors are required to have their clubs inspected and cleared before competition. Clubs will be measured on a Mitchell Golf CLUBLENGTH Measuring Ruler. We have no idea how this compares to any other method of measurement. Clubs that are longer than 48″ on this device will need to be corrected and cleared before competition.

Golf Ball

Players are required to hit the golf ball provided by ALD™ at all events. Players are required to ensure their ALD™ issued balls are visible at all times on the hitting tee.

Tees

Any tee is allowed in ALD™ competition.

Official Yardages

Official Yardages will be determined utilizing grid workers, Leupold laser rangefinder equipment, and / or physical yardage markers. In events and qualifiers where laser range finders are utilized, grid workers positioned along the sides of the grid will mark the longest ball for each hitter in each group by standing over the ball wearing a color-matched vest. An ALD™ official will record the (laser calculated) distance from the tee box to the grid worker.

Scoring Ties

Any two recorded drives within a division round within six inches (6”) of each other are considered a tie. In the event there are two or more such confirmed yardages recorded, those tied players will hit four (4) additional balls in one minute and thirty seconds (1:30) (Playoff) to determine the final winning drive, but only if it is for first place to qualify, transfer, or win. A playoff will continue until a winner is determined. If one of the players is not present for the playoff, the player present will be deemed the winner.

Starting Time

There will be no set time for competition by division…only an order of competition. It is the players’ responsibility to be ready to compete when his or her name is called to the tee, and failure to do so will result in disqualification from competition. In a qualifying round, a player disqualified for this reason may “re-register” (see “Registration” below) and attempt to qualify. Players called to the on-deck area should report immediately to that designated area.

Weather Conditions

ALD™ cannot guarantee weather conditions or constant playing conditions as the result of weather. Every effort will be made to complete all competitions while ensuring the safety of competitors. If conditions become unplayable,  ALD™ reserves the right to shorten or alter the format in effort to complete an official competition. ALD™ will not issue refunds to any player if severe weather conditions shorten or alter the competition format.

Etiquette

Players and their guests shall conduct themselves in a responsible manner at all times. Proper golf etiquette is required during all levels of competitions. At no time will disorderly conduct, abusive language, intoxication, possession of firearms, and/or possession of any illegal substance be tolerated. Violations of this section shall be cause for immediate expulsion form ALD™ competitions and forfeiture of all monies paid, if any. The ALD™ has the right to refuse service to any player or guest for improper etiquette.

Attire

Attire while in competition is up to the venue hosting the event. Most competition venues are at golf courses, so one can assume normal golf attire will usually be required. ALD™ reserves the right to disallow any attire deemed unfit for competition.

Qualifying

Players who are attempting to qualify at Regional Major Qualifying events and fail to qualify in their first attempt may attempt additional qualifications (time permitting) by completing and (paying for) an additional entry after their initial (or last) attempt and prior to another qualifying attempt. Players may attempt up to qualify as many times as as time permits. The ALD™ official on site will determine if time limits.

Competition Timing

Players will have two (2) minutes to attempt six (6) shots in most league and qualifying rounds. There will be certain championship rounds where players will have three (3) minutes to hit eight (8) balls. Practice shots are not allowed on the tee box.

On The Tee Box

Players must have all balls (6 or 8) visible to the scoring officials before the clock begins and may tee only one ball prior to the starting the clock, and only one at a time during the set.

Recording Drives

Only a player’s longest Qualified Drive will be measured and recorded.

Qualifying Drives

Each player will be scored based on their longest drives. Qualifying drives must come to rest inside the grid and meet or exceed the minimum length for the respective division. Qualifying drive lengths may be adjusted for weather and grid conditions at the discretion of the ALD™ official. Standard qualifying drive lengths for each division are as follows. Note: These numbers are preliminary.

Youth Male – 175 Youth Female – 150 Junior Male – 200 Yards Junior Female – 175 Yards – Open Male – 275 Yards – Open Female – 220 Yards Senior Male – 250 Yards Senior Female – 190 Yards Super Senior Male – 225 Yards Super Senior Female – 175 Yards. Actual qualifying drive minimums will be determined on the day of qualification based on grid conditions.

Drives that exceed the length of the grid shall qualify if (in the opinion of the ALD™ official) are within the established grid width using his/her best judgement. In the event two or more qualifying drives exceed the grid, and measurement of those drives are necessary to determine round transfers or wins, the ALD™officials will use their best judgement to determine the winner. 

League Format

Before the competition, via blind draw (and / or seeding), ALD™ officials will divide the field (by division) into groups of (up to) four (4) players. Smaller fields will be accommodated. Format and groups may be adjusted according to the ALD™ official’s decision. Each group will hit at least two (2) sets of six (6) balls to determine the winner in each division. Additional sets of six (6) balls may be purchased to “Challenge” the final result (in any division) for $35 if the ALD™ official agrees there is sufficient opportunity to allow an additional round of competition for challenging competitors.  League Points and World Ranking Points will be awarded based upon the results of the final competition. Only those “claiming” the host league as their “Home” will be awarded League Points. Unassigned players and those competing outside their Home League are permitted to compete in any league event, and shall receive World Ranking Points in lieu of League Points based upon their finish. At the end of the League season, the winner (most League Points) of each division will automatically transfer to the World Championship.

Regional Major Qualifier Format

Before the competition, via blind draw (and / or seeding), ALD™ officials will divide the field (by division) into groups of (up to) four (4) players. Smaller fields will be accommodated. Format and groups may be adjusted according to the ALD™ official’s decision. Each group will hit two (2) sets of six (6) balls to determine the winner in each division. Additional sets of six (6) balls may be purchased for $55 if the ALD™ official agrees there is sufficient opportunity to allow additional competition.  World Ranking Points will be awarded based upon the results of the final competition. The winner in each division will automatically transfer to the World Championship. Any ALD™ Member with a current (*full) competition license may compete in any Regional Major qualifier.

*Trial Memberships are not available for Regional Majors.

ALD™ World Championship

Participation in the World Championship is earned through accumulation of World Ranking Points, League competition, and Regional Major competition.

Division World Championship Format

Before the competition, via blind draw (and / or seeding), ALD™ officials will divide the field (by division) into groups of (up to) four (4) players. Smaller fields will be accommodated. Format and groups may be adjusted according to participation and the ALD™ official’s decision. Players will compete in up to two (2) Competition Rounds and/or at least one (1) Final / Championship Round based upon total participation in each division. Competition format (at the ALD™ official’s discretion) may include hitting up to two (2) sets of 6 balls in two (2) minute sets or single sets of eight (8) balls in three (3) minute sets. The winner in each division will be crowned (Year) Amateur Long Drive™ Division World Champion.

ALD™ Open World Championship***

The Open World Championship is a showdown between the top competitors from the competing categories such as Adaptive, Veteran, and Amateurs. There is not an “official age” for this competition. Competitors of all ages from all divisions are eligible. We will take up to: the top four (4) Adaptive hitters;  top four (4) Amateur hitters; and top four (4) Veteran hitters (who achieve a pre-determined minimum drive) into an elimination round. From the elimination rounds, the top hitter in each division will advance into the Open World Championship Finals. In the Open final, the top divisional competitors will compete in a head to head format by hitting one (1) 8 ball set to determine the winner. The longest drive from this round will be the Open World Champion. In the event of a tie, the two tied hitters will hit a four (4) set in 1 1/2 minutes to break the tie. ***Note: This portion of the championship may altered based on live television schedules.

World Ranking Points System

  1. ALD™ full competition membership is required to receive competition points (Trial Members do not receive points)
  2. Points are only awarded at ALD™ Sanctioned Events
  3. ALD™ World Ranking resets at the beginning of each season (no points are carried over from season to season)
  4. Bonus points are awarded to top 10 in each division and shall be weighted based upon “Strength of Field” after 10 tournaments have been completed (globally). Note: There must be at least two (2) players in any division to receive bonus points.
  5. Section / League Points

All Players shall receive 100 points per Section / League event registration plus bonus points.

Requires 2 or more in a division for bonus points to be awarded

  1. First Place In Each Division (Requires 2 or more in a division to receive bonus points)

500 bonus points for longest drive

25 bonus points for longest drive in a division with 12 or more Players

25 bonus points for longest drive in a division with at least 1 top 10 ranking Player (other than the winner). Goes into effect after 10 tournaments have been competed (globally).

  1. Second Place

450 bonus points for 2nd place

25 bonus points for 2nd place in a division with 12 or more players

25 bonus points for 2nd longest drive in a division with at least 1 top 10 ranking Player (other than the 2nd place) Goes into effect after 10 tournaments have been competed (globally).

  1. Third Place

400 bonus points for 3rd place

25 bonus points for 3rd place in a division with 12 or more players

25 bonus points for 3rd longest drive in a division with at least 1 top 10 ranking Player (other than the 3rd place) Goes into effect after 10 tournaments have been competed (globally).

  1. Fourth Place

350 bonus points for 4th  place

25 bonus points for 4th  place in a division with 12 or more players

25 bonus points for 4th longest drive in a division with at least 1 top 10 ranking Player (other than the 4th  place) Goes into effect after 10 tournaments have been competed (globally).

  1. Fifth Place

300 bonus points for 5th  place

25 bonus points for 5th  place in a division with 12 or more players

25 bonus points for 5th longest drive in a division with at least 1 top 10 ranking Player (other than the 5th  place) Goes into effect after 10 tournaments have been competed (globally).

  1. Sixth Place

250 bonus points for 6th   place

25 bonus points for 6th place in a division with 12 or more players

25 bonus points for 6th longest drive in a division with at least 1 top 10 ranking Player (other than the 6th place) Goes into effect after 10 tournaments have been competed (globally).

  1. Seventh Place

200 bonus points for 7th   place

25 bonus points for 7th place in a division with 12 or more players

25 bonus points for 7th longest drive in a division with at least 1 top 10 ranking Player (other than the 7th place) Goes into effect after 10 tournaments have been competed (globally).

  1. Eight Place

150 bonus points for 8th   place

25 bonus points for 8th  place in a division with 12 or more players

25 bonus points for 8th  longest drive in a division with at least 1 top 10 ranking Player (other than the 8th  place) Goes into effect after 10 tournaments have been competed (globally).

  1. Ninth Place

100 bonus points for 9th  place

25 bonus points for 9th place in a division with 12 or more players

25 bonus points for 9th longest drive in a division with at least 1 top 10 ranking Player (other than the 9th place) Goes into effect after 10 tournaments have been competed (globally).

  1. Tenth Place

50 bonus points for 10th  place

25 bonus points for 10th place in a division with 12 or more players

25 bonus points for 10th longest drive in a division with at least 1 top 10 ranking Player (other than the 10th place) Goes into effect after 10 tournaments have been competed (globally).

Regional Major Qualifier (Any Full Member May Enter) – Each Division

Requires 2 or more in a division for bonus points to be awarded

  1. First Place 

1000 points for longest drive

  1. Second Place

900 points for 2nd place

  1. Third Place

800 points for 3rd place

  1. Fourth Place

700 points for 4th place

  1. Fifth Place

600 points for 5th place

  1. Sixth Place

500 points for 6th place

  1. Seventh Place

400 points for 7thplace

  1. Eighth Place

300 points for 8th place

  1. Ninth Place

200 points for 9th place

    1. Tenth Place

100 points for 10th place

Transfer Spots To The World Championship

The top player in each division based on World Ranking Points will transfer to the WorldChampionship
The top player in each division from each League will transfer to the World Championship
The top player in each division from each (Western, Central, Eastern and Last Chance Qualifier) Regional Major will transfer to the World Championship. —–Competitors in the Regional will also get double World Ranking Points. ALD™ Members may compete in any or all Regional Majors if they wish. 
Since the Last Chance Qualifier (LCQ) is the day before the World Championship, World Ranking Points awarded from the LCQ are inconsequential and cannot affect World Championship transfers already determined.
In addition to these spots, alternates and Participation / Performance Wild Cards may be transferred based upon participation commitment from the league and other Regional winners. For example….players who are eligible to transfer from the Leagues and Regional Majors will have to commit by August 1st to maintain their position in the World Championship. The next player in line at the League and Regional will be the first alternate for those positions….and so on. If any of the league transfer spots are left unfilled, the ALD™ Tournament Director may add transfer spots from the LCQ or offer Wild Card spots based upon performance and participation.

Over the first two seasons of ALD competition (2017 and 2018), we made a couple of changes in how we determine who can and cannot compete as an amateur in our competition. We’ve adopted a new ruling that goes into effect beginning September 1, 2018.

If you have ever checked the box to compete as a professional in any golf competition, you will need to regain your amateur status via the USGA to compete as an amateur and earn points in an ALD™ competition.

We hope this clears the confusion.

Jeff Gilder

Founder, iNetGolf, LLC / Amateur Long Drive™

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