Once again, Michael Hoey was the victim on Thursday of another violation of the Rules of Golf.
The Northern Irishman was playing the par-5 16th hole in the first round of the Johnnie Walker Championship at Gleneagles in Scotland when his ball ended up in an area marked as ground under repair.
Because of overnight rain saturating the course, the field was allowed to play with preferred lies (i.e., life, clean and place) from the fairway. Hoey picked up his ball, then placed it out of the ground under repair (GUR) on a preferred lie. Unfortunately, he skipped a step – dropping the ball out of the GUR before then taking a preferred lie.
The mistake cost Hoey two shots, giving him a 7 on the hole en route to shooting 1-under 71 to trail the leaders by three shots. He otherwise would be just a shot out of the lead.
This is the second run-in Hoey has had with the Rules of Golf this month. He was disqualified from the PGA Championship after an exceptional second round in windy Friday conditions. After taking relief from an embedded ball, Hoey failed to recreate the lie properly. He realized the mistake after signing for his card, which led to the disqualification.
Given his recent run of, in his words, “skipping a step” in taking relief, Hoey said he just has to ask for help in those situations.
“I think I just need to call a ref in,” Hoey said, scratching his head in an interview with the European Tour, “if I’m not 100 percent sure.”