A horse race is a golf tournament where each player pays an entry fee and receives a set number of “horses” to use throughout the event. The horses represent the player’s score for each hole, aiming to finish the tournament with the lowest overall score.

The format is typically played over two or three rounds, with each player using a different horse in each round. The player with the lowest score at the end of the tournament is the winner.

Horse races can be played as team events or as individual competitions. In a team event, each player’s score is combined with their teammates to give a team total, and the team with the lowest score is the winner.

Horse races are a great way to add fun and competition to your golf game. They can be played with any size group and are a great way to level the playing field between handicap groups.

How to add a handicap to horse race golf

Adding a handicap to a horse race can make the game more fair and exciting for all involved. It can also add an element of strategy, as players must decide how to use their handicapped horses to their best advantage.

There are several ways to add a handicap to a horse race. One option is to give each player a set number of handicap strokes they can use on any hole. Another option is to have a separate horse race for players with low handicaps, mid handicaps, and high handicaps, with the winner being the player with the lowest score after applying their handicap.

Whatever method you choose, ensure all players are aware of the rules before the start of the game. This will ensure that everyone is on an even playing field and that the game is as fair and fun as possible.

With some planning and creativity, a horse race can be a great way to add some extra excitement to your next golf outing.

Pros and cons of horse race golf tournaments

When it comes to horse race golf tournaments, some pros and cons need to be considered. On the one hand, these tournaments can be a lot of fun. They add an element of competition and excitement to the game that can be lacking in traditional golf tournaments. However, on the other hand, horse race golf tournaments can also be frustrating. They can be unpredictable and often come down to luck more than skill.

Let’s take a look at some of the pros and cons of horse race golf tournaments:


  • Can be a lot of fun
  • Add excitement to the game
  • Can be good for business (if people are betting on the outcome)


  • Can be frustrating
  • Can be unpredictable
  • Often come down to luck more than skill

So, what do you think? Are horse race golf tournaments a good or bad idea? Let us know in the comments below.

About the Author

Jared Tangir