What are flights?
Golf flights are a series of smaller competitions within a golf tournament. A flight is a grouping of individual golfers or teams who are competing against one another, instead of the entire field. Each flight is usually made up of golfers of similar scoring ability.
How to determine flights?
The most useful and common way to flight a golf tournament is by handicap index or course handicap. Flights are typically numbered or labeled alphabetically (in some instances the names will be customized and named after cities, states, etc.). An example: Flight #1, Flight# 2....... or Flight A, Flight B, Flight C. Golfers of the best ability in the tournament are typically grouped in the A or #1 flight. Working through the field, beginning with the top golfers, the rest of the flights are determined according to the overall number of flights chosen, tournament participants, and hdcp.
How many flights are there?
The tournament organizer will choose the number of flights for a tournament based on a few different factors: The size of the field, handicap fluctuation, number of winning spots available. There is no set standard for the amount of flights used in a golf tournament, but the typical range is anywhere from 2 to 7 flights. It is really common to see 4 flights used, or A, B, C, D flights. If four flights were used the handicap index range could look something like this: Flight A = 0-8, Flight B = 9-14, Flight C = 15-20, Flight D = 21 and over.
Why would you use flights?
A flighted golf tournament is very useful in leveling the playing field and creates more winning opportunities in gross competitions. In a tournament flighted by skill level, golfers within each flight have a better chance when competing against one another for that flight championship. For example: A 16 handicapper is going to have far less chance of winning against a single digit handicapper. However, the 16 has a great chance to win a flight made up of golfers between 15-20 hdcps.
It is not uncommon for flighted tournaments to have both Gross and Net winners, or Gross flight champions with a net overall winner.
Can you flight competitions in Golf Pad Events.
The competitions in Golf Pad Events are by default, not flighted. However, there is an option when creating a competition (in the competition settings window) to select the number of flights for your competition. This option generates the flight separation based on 3 factors; the total number of golfers in the tournament, the number of flights chosen by the tournament organizer, and the golfers individual handicap index. For example: If 3 flights are chosen for 18 total golfers: Flight A = the 6 lowest index, Flight B = the middle 6, Flight C = the 6 golfers with the highest index.
Are settings the same for all flights?
For the most part competition settings for a tournament will remain the same across all flights. However, there can be scenarios where settings need to be adjusted on a per flight basis. The flight settings window is where you can see individual settings by flight; these settings include # of participants, hdcp, tee settings, and payout settings. From the flight settings window you can choose to edit individual flight settings, by selecting the edit button on the right-hand side. This will open the flight details window, here you can make a number of changes to flight specific settings, including editing flight name or number, different tee settings, or payout settings.