A local course I often play has several permanent Ground Under Repair areas that have provoked discussion. If a ball is hit so far into one that it can’t be found, is it a lost ball, or does the GUR take precedence? —JOHN REED, VIA E-MAIL
Has all this GUR been designated a national park? It sounds quite impressive.
As to Rules ramifications, the issue boils down to certitude. If it is known, or virtually certain, that the ball is lost within the GUR — say, 95.012 percent likelihood or above, for you statistical types — then the player is entitled to free relief.
Use the point that the ball last entered the GUR, determine the nearest point of complete relief from there, and drop within one club length, no closer to the hole. If the player thinks that maybe the ball entered GUR (or just wishes it were so), the dreaded stroke-and-distance penalty applies.
Got a rules question? Of course you do! Whatever it may be, send yours to email@example.com and the question may be answered in an upcoming issue of GOLF. Until then, play by the Rules!