The USGA and The R&A have posted the initial 2019 Counting Event calendar for the World Ranking for Golfers with Disability (WR4GD) on WAGR.com, and are encouraging players and golf event organizers worldwide to register.
Golf events eligible for the ranking are listed in three series:
- Access, in which golfers with any recognized disability play together with a maximum handicap of 54;
- Challenge, which groups golfers with like disabilities with a maximum handicap of 54; and
- Premier, in which golfers with any recognized disability play together with a maximum handicap of 28 for men and 36 for women.
In all cases, the player’s handicap must be issued by a nationally recognized golf handicap authority.
For more information, players can go to the WR4GD FAQ for What is a Counting Event?, where the application form link for a Counting Event can be found.
Based on the results from these events, WR4GD ranks players in gross and net pan-disability divisions for players with a handicap index of 18.4 and below, and in a net Stableford pan-disability division for players with a handicap of 18.5 and above. Men and women, as well as professional and amateur golfers, are included in the same WR4GD ranking.
Golfers must apply for either an Access Pass or WR4GD Pass to play in Counting Events. A WR4GD Pass is required to be eligible for the global ranking. An Access Pass requires medical evidence of disability or a copy of a government disability certificate. To qualify for a WR4GD Pass, your disability has to have an influence on your golf game, as described in EDGA’s Definitions of Impairment. Only players with a WR4GD Pass may play in Premier events. For more information, go the WR4GD FAQs for the Access Pass and WR4GD Pass, where application form links can be found.
Access Passes for eligible players can be approved within a couple of weeks. Some WR4GD Passes can be approved within a couple of weeks while other applicants will first need to be seen in person by an EDGA medical classifier. A network of EDGA medical classifiers is currently being developed to serve golfers globally.
The WR4GD Frequently Asked Questions on WAGR.com provide greater detail on how the ranking is determined. They include answers to questions such as: “How does WR4GD obtain the results from a Counting Event?”, “How do I become a WR4GD Ranked Player?” and “How are WR4GD positions determined?”
The WR4GD ranking model was originally developed as R4GD by EDGA, an organization formed in 2000 in Europe with seven participating countries. With events being played in more than 20 countries and growing, the official ranking is now administered by the USGA and The R&A and posted on WAGR.com in an effort to build awareness and inclusivity globally. The organizations are working with EDGA, medical classifiers, players and event organizers to support its growth and adoption wherever golf is played.