R&A Pace of Play Manual Embraces Concepts Introduced by Pace Manager Systems


The New Pace of Play Manual published by the R&A this May has fully embraced the pace of play concepts that Bill Yates introduced in his Pace Manager Systems® consulting with the R&A between 2000 and 2003. “It’s gratifying to know that now, as then, we are focused on the same goal – to improve and grow the game we love,” said Yates. “I have congratulated the R&A for making my original concepts part of their institutional thinking, just as the USGA has done since my consulting with them in 2013-2014.”


The genesis for the new pace of play thinking now espoused by both the R&A and the USGA was Yates’ original research and the resulting conclusions that led him to establish the “Five Factors that Impact Pace of Play™”, which have been the topic of numerous articles, conferences and practical application at golf courses around the world since 1995. As Yates regards these Five Factors – Management Practices and Policies, Player Behavior, Player Ability, Course Maintenance and Setup, and Course Design – the centerpiece of his work to improve the pace and flow of play, he is pleased to see that they are appearing now as foundational concepts in the R&A’s new Manual. “As there is no one ‘silver bullet’ to eliminate slow play, attention to how each of these areas affects play on a course is critical,” Yates said.


Yates’ consulting with the R&A led to his recommendations that created landmark success in pace and flow at the 2002 Open and Amateur Championships. Those successes then led to the development of the 2003 R&A Symposium at St Andrews that was designed specifically around these Five Factors. Both the Championships and the Symposium were widely reported in UK press, documenting the successes and the new “pioneering” thinking.


Yates is unequivocal in his enthusiasm and support for the new Manual. “I applaud the R&A’s deep interest in solving the pace of play problem, and in fact I referenced the Manual in my conference appearance and workshops this summer in Australia,” said Yates. “The familiarity with this multi-faceted approach to understanding and solving slow play, rather than earlier beliefs that it is all the players’ fault, will serve both the R&A and the USGA well in their continued efforts to understand and analyze the complex dynamics that impact pace and flow of play.” Click here for the inside story on this and other slow play myths.


For more than 25 years, Yates’ Pace Manager Systems approach has transformed play at hundreds of courses in the US and around the world, helping them achieve lower round times, eliminate backups and waiting, reduce complaints, and increase revenue. Click here for some testimonials from well-known courses.


As a footnote: For your interest and enjoyment, click here to see the July 2001 Golf Magazine article “Paceman” by Editor-in-Chief George Peper, who was the originator of what is now the USGA’s Pace Rating system. Peper highlights some of Yates' researches and conclusions about pace and flow of play, and notes some unique and surprising insights he shared in consulting with the St Andrews Links Trust.


  • "Thanks to Pace Manager, we can now communicate with each other and our guests with facts."

    Brian Shaw, Head Golf Professional

    Doonbeg Golf Club, Ireland
  • "Thanks to you, we have experienced two magical years of smooth flowing golf and exceptional pace"

    Steve Harker, Mgr. Performance Excellence

    Osprey Ridge at Disney World, Florida
  • "Your program was not an expense; it was a sound investment."

    Terry Boldt, Golf Division Manager

    City of Calgary Municipal Courses, Canada

Client Courses

  • US Women's Open Championship

    Sebonack GC, Southampton, NY

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