July 28, 2014
- Gary Woodland scored a record 44 points to win last year's Barracuda Championship. (Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)
This week's Barracuda Championship is the only PGA TOUR event that uses the Modified Stableford scoring format, which encourages aggressive play. Combine the format with Reno's altitude -- which allows the ball to travel farther -- and fans can expect to see plenty of birdies.
Unlike traditional scoring methods, where the aim is to have the lowest score, the objective in a Modified Stableford tournament is to have the highest score. Gary Woodland set a scoring record last year at +44 points.
Modified Stableford awards points based on the number of strokes taken at each hole. Scoring at the 2014 Barracuda Championship will look like this:
• Double Eagle: 8 points
• Eagle: 5 points
• Birdie: 2 points
• Par: 0 points
• Bogey: -1 point
• Double Bogey or more: -3 points
Stableford scoring rewards risk-taking on the golf course because a birdie is twice as rewarding (2 points) as a bogey is punitive (-1). Eagles offer huge payoffs (5 points) and the worst a player could possibly do would be a double bogey (-3 points) at which point he could pick up his ball and carry on to the next hole. Those golfers who make a few bogeys but also make a lot of birdies or eagles are more likely to be atop the leaderboards.
The Barracuda Championship will still offer 300 FedExCup points and a purse of $3 million.