Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Grooves Update from USGA

Recently in this blog, I wondered if the lack of news on the equipment regulation front meant that the USGA had found some holy grail of information that told them that grooves were not the problem, or that they had found that enforcement of such regulation would be extremely difficult, or some other tidbit that would delay further action by the USGA and R&A.

I also noted that I would try to get a hold of the USGA and see if I could get an update. I heard back today from Dick Rugge, USGA Senior Technical Director. I asked him the very questions I posed in my blog and he responded in kind.

Rugge noted to me that the USGA allowed a very long comment period on the research it conducted and is available on its website. From the USGA announcement of the proposal and the presentation of the research that is linked in my update, you can see that. He noted that the USGA received a quite a bit of information in that comment period from the manufacturers that "represents substantial work" and that consideration and evaluation of those comments is simply taking longer than originally anticipated.

Rugge also reiterated from the linked Bomb and Gouge post that there will be no action until both the USGA and R&A meet following the 2/8 Equipment Standards Meeting. That does NOT mean that there will be a decision soon after 2/8 - just not before 2/8.

Also, there is no holy grail - at least that will come out from the USGA. They have not plan to publish any additional research. So, while we are still awaiting a final decision from the governing bodies, we at least know where things stand and how come there has been a delay.

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