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Stableford Format

Golf Format

The Stableford scoring system is a popular golf format. Developed by Dr. Frank Barney Gorton Stableford in 1931, the Stableford format is a scoring system in which the final score is not the stroke total. Instead, each hole earns a point value based on the individuals stroke total. As a result, the final score is the sum of the 18 hole point values per each hole. Consequently, the objective is to have the highest score.

The number of points awarded on each hole is based on the number of strokes vs. a fixed score, usually par, with individual handicaps factoring into the scoring as well. See the typical Stableford Format scoring system below.


Double Bogey or worse  0 points
Bogey  1 point
Par  2 points
Birdie  3 points
Eagle  4 points
Albatross  5 points

Modified Stableford

Another variation of the Stableford format is as follows.

Double bogey or more: -3 points
Bogey: -1 points
Par: 0 points
Birdie: +2 points
Eagle: +5 points
Albatross: +8 points

This scoring format is not used as frequently, mostly because members wish to see a positive score value.

Also unlike traditional golf, if it’s no longer possible, under the typical stableford, for a player to score a point on a hole, a player is not required to complete it.  They are permitted to pick up the ball and head to the next!  This means greater speed of play, not to mention a whole lot less frustration on a bad hole.

Although the Stableford format is a popular game in Europe and South Africa, there is much less play here in the States. As a result, few American golfers useHowever, if you’re looking for a different twist on the game, consider this classic next time. 

golf format