- How do I enter the tournaments?
Each tournament site handles the entry fees and the overall operation of each event. The Tour does not have a central office that accepts entries on behalf of the host sites. All you have to do is go over the schedule, pick out the tournaments in which you wish to compete, and phone the host club. Most sites do require pre-payment to assure your entry is accepted.
- Where can I find out the Tour schedule?
There are several ways to find out this information. This website of course has the 2017 Tour Schedule, and posters will be on site at most of the golf courses in Alberta. The 2017 Alberta Golfer magazine will also have the complete 2017 Tour Schedule.
- How much does it cost to join the Tour?
Nothing. Unlike other Junior Golf Tours, the McLennan Ross Junior Golf Tour does not charge any fees to junior golfers to "join" the Tour. We merely act as a coordinating body to organize a series of existing Junior golf tournaments throughout Alberta. Competitors pay an entry fee at each event, but those funds are paid back to competitors in the way of prizes. A meal is also provided to entrants at each event. For the 2017 season, we expect that entry fees for one-day events will average about $50-65. The multi-day tournaments may be slightly more.
- What is the age limit for the Tour?
For the 2017 season, any junior boy or girl born in the CALENDAR year of 1998 or later is eligible to enter a Tour event. This may mean that some juniors with birthdays in the first half of 1998 will have reached their 19th birthday, making them ineligible for Alberta Golf Association Junior tournaments, but those juniors will still be able to enter McLennan Ross Junior Golf Tour events.
- Is there a minimum age to enter a Tour event?
Many Juniors have made Tour events their first competitive experience. We field many calls from parents asking if their child can enter tournaments as young as 9 or 10, for example. Although our role with the Tour is more geared towards coordinating the various events around the province rather than actually running the tournaments, we have not found any situations where a site would prohibit a youngster from entering a tournament solely due to age.
But we ask parents to answer the following three questions:
Is the player old enough to carry or pull his or her clubs for 18 holes?
(Caddies are not permitted in Tour events at this time)
Is the player old enough to be able to keep his or her own score for 18 holes?
We do not expect the kids to be Rules experts; our role is to help coach and develop their knowledge of the Rules as they go along, but they should have enough of an understanding and maturity to keep their scores honestly and to the best of their abilities.
Is the player old enough to be able to keep the score of a fellow-competitor for 18 holes as well?
The kids exchange scorecards on the first tee, and sit down after the round at the scoring table and sign off on each other's score. Competitors have a responsibility to the rest of the field to do this fairly and accurately. If the junior can answer "Yes" to these three questions, then he or she is possibly ready to begin their competitive career, even if they are only 9 or 10. But keep in mind that many Tour events may not have a large number of entrants in this younger age group, and the player may be directly competing with kids 2 or 3 years older, which at that age is a big disadvantage. Some events with larger fields may have a 12 & Under Flight. If you are in doubt as to age requirements for a specific tournament, please check with the host site.
- Is the player old enough to carry or pull his or her clubs for 18 holes?
- As a player, what can I expect at a Tour event?
Players can expect well-run tournaments with both a good level of competition for the elite player, and an atmosphere that will nurture those players just getting started in their competitive golf careers. Entry fees are reasonable, with all the entry fees returned to the players by way of meals and prizes. Players can expect to meet new friends, test their abilities on sometimes unfamiliar golf courses in a variety of conditions, and they can expect both fun and excitement when they play well, and sometimes crushing disappointment when they play poorly. Tournament golf is NOT like playing your home course with your friends.
- What is expected of ME as a competitor at a Tour event?
Players are expected to behave as young gentlemen and ladies. This does not mean you cannot have fun. But we have certain expectations of competitors in terms of their respect for the game, their fellow-competitors, tournament officials and volunteers, and themselves. Please refer to our Code of Conduct section for complete details on dress code and behavior at Tour events.
- What is the expected dress and behavior code for players on the Tour?
We have developed a written Code of Conduct for Tour players that is posted on the Tour website. We feel this would make very good grounds for a family discussion between players and their parents so that everyone has a solid understanding of the demands that this Tour places on participants in regards to their behavior while at Tour events. The Code is very closely modeled on the Code of Conduct for Alberta Golf , and our goal is to make all players very familiar with the standards expected of them once they have started to compete at a provincial and national level. Competitors will be expected to adhere to the dress code of the host club. In other words, if the host club permits blue jeans, players may wear blue jeans, but we expect all competitors to be neat and tidy in appearance at all times. We want to encourage participation in a fun atmosphere for the kids, but within reason. At the Tour Championship, the Alberta Golf Dress Code will be strictly enforced.
- As a parent, may I watch my child during his or her round?
Certainly! We value the support of parents for their kids' activities, but once the round starts, the players are on their own. Parents may assist in the search for lost golf balls, but may offer NO advice or counsel to their child during the round. We ask that parents and spectators stay at least 30 yards from competitors at ALL times during the round.
Junior golf is about DEVELOPMENT, and this means providing the competitors the opportunity to learn how to manage their golf game and their emotions during a round without outside influence from parents or spectators. You will have plenty of opportunity to discuss strategy ( or lack thereof) with the kids in the car on the way home after the tournament.
- Do players require an official Alberta Golf handicap card to enter tournaments on the Tour?
No. But we STRONGLY recommend that all junior golfers establish and maintain an official Alberta Golf handicap from their own club. If your club is now a member of the online Golf Canada Network, the players should then get in the habit of updating their handicap factor at least every two weeks, and carrying a printout with them at all times. Updated handicap factors may also be supplied on the Golf Canada app from your smartphone. Most of the host clubs will insist on a player producing an updated handicap verification or Golf Canada printout at registration, or they risk the chance of not being eligible to win `net` score prizes. One of the goals of the McLennan Ross Junior Tour is to prepare players for what they will encounter at a higher level of competition and evidence of an official handicap is MANDATORY for entry into official Alberta Golf tournaments.
Juniors not affliiated with any one particular club may establish an official Alberta Golf handicap as an individual. Please visit www.albertagolf.org for detailed information on how to do so.
- How do I qualify for the Tour Championship?
Ryan Vold, Director of Golf at Wolf Creek Golf Resort, is one of the founders of the Tour, and every year has generously supplied the use of Wolf Creek as the site of the season-ending Tour Championship. Our goal as organizers has been to make this event very special and one of the tournament highlights of a Junior golfer's season. At each Tour event, the winner of each of three flights for Junior Boys automatically qualifies for the Tour Championship: For 2017, these flights will be: Boys born in the calendar years 1998/99/2000, the years 2001/2002, and in the year 2003 and later. The Junior Girls winner also automatically qualifies. We also identify at least two Wild Card qualifiers at each event. Wild Card qualifiers are those competitors who have the next best scores from any Age Group that did not win their flights. In some cases because of a large number of entries at a particular site, we may add additional Wild Card qualifiers. If an Age Group or Wild Card qualifier had previously earned his or her way into the Tour Championship, the next best score would earn a qualifying spot for Wolf Creek.
- How does the Srixon Order of Merit work?
At each Tour event, players can earn ranking points for the Srixon Order of Merit in their respective age groups. We keep track of the points in the Order of Merit section on the website so that players can track their standings throughout the summer.
Points are awarded as follows:
1st - 100 points
2nd - 60 points
3rd - 40 points
4th - 30 points
5th - 20 points
6th - 10 points
If there is a multi-way tie for a position and that tie is not broken on the golf course by way of playoff, then the points are added up and split. For example, if two players tied for 2nd in their age group, we add up the 60 points for 2nd with the 40 points for 3rd and each player gets 50 points.
Points are doubled at the season-ending Tour Championship. The overall season winner in each of the three age groups for boys plus the girls' winner each receive excellent prizes from Srixon Golf.
- Why are there no 54 - hole or 72 - hole events on the Tour?
As administrators of the Tour, we have merely coordinated existing Junior golf tournaments already in existence. Typically a Junior Open at a club will be an 18-hole or 36-hole event. Entry fees can be kept affordable for all kids, and only would occasionally require an overnight stay at a tournament site. If we were to develop multi-day events, the costs for these tournaments would rise substantially, and we would have difficulty securing good golf courses unless we were to purchase tee times at these facilities, which would also lead to a substantial increase in fees. There is no question that competing in 54-hole and 72-hole tournaments does provide valuable experience for players once they reach the Provincial and National levels. However, we see our role on this Tour as that of providing good quality tournament experience for all levels of juniors without incurring prohibitive costs for their parents.
- Are distance ranger finders permitted at Tour events?
Yes, but only types that provide information on DISTANCE ONLY, not devices that also factor in elevation changes, wind speed or direction, or compass functions. If in doubt as to the legality of a particular range finder, obtain approval from a Tour official prior to using the range finder in Tournament play.
- Are players permitted to use wireless devices such as MP3 players or cell phones during competition?
Use of such devices is prohibited. Only in the event of medical or family emergencies may a competitor use his or her cell phone during the stipulated round. Competitors may also use their cell phones to obtain information about potentially dangerous weather in the immediate vicinity. Cell phones must be turned OFF during the round. Devices such as MP3 players designed primarily for music listening capabilities are not permitted to be used at ANY time during the round.
In other words, if you have ear buds visible during the round, it's a dead giveaway!
Translation = Players are at tournaments to play golf, meet new friends and compete with a minimum of distractions, not listen to tunes or call their friends on the phone! NO Texting!!!