For the sake of comparing apples to apples as it relates to pace of play, let’s take a look at why playing a round in the U.S. Open isn’t anything like playing on a busy Saturday at your local club.
1.) You aren’t waiting for thousands of people to move from one location to another after every shot you hit. Even the best players in the world deserve to hit a shot without major distractions.
2.) When another group at your club hits from an adjacent tee, the shot isn’t followed by a huge roar from the crowd. So when the players in the U.S. Open give courtesy to an adjacent tee box or green, give them a little slack as they shouldn’t have to pull the trigger midst a roar of 2,500 screaming Philadelphia fans.
3.) Your course likely doesn’t use the split tee start which inherently causes pace of play problems when groups play their front nine too fast and then have to wait until the final groups tee off the back nine. Proper spacing is paramount to reducing pace of play problems and split tee starts are horrible at keeping proper spacing on that second nine holes.
4.) It’s probably safe to assume you don’t have a gallery snapping pictures of your golf swing with their phones. So when a player backs off a shot and his caddy screams “Phones away please”, realize there’s another 30 seconds wasted that wouldn’t have been otherwise.
5.) If you miss a shot and don’t finish inside the top 10 of your Saturday group, you’ll be invited back next week. The players competing in the U.S. Open are competing for a chance to return for next year’s National Championship. It’s understandable they might be taking things a bit more seriously than you should when competing for your $10 nassau.
6.) If you post the low score on Saturday, it’s highly unlikely anyone will be carving your name into a trophy and penning your name into golf’s history books.
7.) This is their job. It’s kind of important they do it well for the sake of keeping their job.