We’ve previously looked at scratch handicap golf stats and how zero digit index players compile their rounds, but how do they compare to 12 handicappers?
Thanks to data from Arccos Golf, gleaned from 750 million golf shots, we can see – and the numbers are fascinating.
The base numbers show where the differences lie in each department of the game, from off the tee to approach, around the greens and putting.
Where does the scratch handicapper excel the most? Many may think it is around the greens, but in actual fact it is hitting into them with their approach games.
Differences between the Typical 12 index player and a scratch player
- 40% of the stroke difference is approach play
- 28% is off the tee
- 16% is around the green
- 16% is putting”
Scratch vs 12 handicap – approach
The numbers show clear superiorities in every department of the game, but approach play seems to be where the scratch players are truly elevating themselves above 12 handicappers, so let’s take a deeper look.
A scratch player, based on Arccos Golf’s numbers, hits 56% of greens in regulation (10.08) compared to 31% (5.58) from a 12 handicapper. That’s consistently four or five extra greens per round.
When hitting into greens, scratch players unsurprisingly get the ball closer, too.
With a standard Green in Regulation, scratch golfers hit it to 26ft, which is 6ft closer than the 32ft that 12 handicappers hit it to. The gap is wider on ‘All approaches’ too, with scratch players averaging 44ft compared to 12 handicappers’ 69ft.
Scratch vs 12 handicap – driving
Aside from being more technically skilled, scratch handicappers do have an advantage when hitting into greens. That’s because they’re on average 31 yards further down the hole and find 6% more fairways than 12 handicappers.
The average scratch player averages 259 yards (total) off the tee, compared to 228 yards for 12 handicappers.
For those who think those numbers aren’t very high, remember the drives take into account poor strikes, drives into wind and also drives throughout the year, like in the colder, wetter winter months where the ball doesn’t travel…