Newslines Spring 2018

Front line cutting fleet update 20/20 vision at Manor of Groves Hertfordshire’ s Manor of Groves Golf Club has purchased its first fleet of Toro machinery and resolved to be exclusively Toro by 2020. The club invested in a Toro Reelmaster 5510-D, two TriFlex 3400 mowers , a Workman complete with a Multi Pro 200 sprayer, and a ProForce debris blower to update its front line cutting fleet (greens, fairways, tees and approaches). Course manager Lee Brinkley’s favourite addition to the new fleet is the Workman complete with a Multi Pro 200 sprayer: “With the Multi Pro, we can apply foliar based fertilisers which are absorbed through the leaves, making nutrients more readily available to the plants.” Out of the new mowers, the TriFlex 3400 stands out to Lee: “Maintenance is so easy! With our previous greens mower you had to forever pump grease into the bearings to keep everything lubricated, but the 3400 has sealed steel bearings which don’t need greasing – it makes maintenance far easier for us, and saves on time." According to Lee, Toro has transformed the club: “This is the first time in years we have purchased more than one machine at a time. To have brought five in at the same time means the improvements are really noticeable. We’ve seen the difference Toro can bring to our course and as a result the club’s approach to machinery investment has changed – we now plan to buy new Toro machines every three years and hope to have an all-red fleet by 2020!” 03 03 Course manager Lee Brinkley is impressed with Toro’s easy maintenance Q&A With Craig Gilholm, course manager at Royal Liverpool Golf Club. Last time we spoke to Craig, pictured, he had reaffirme d Royal Liverpool’s partnership with Toro for another five years, taking the length of the relationship to 20 years. The deal saw Craig opt for Toro’s revolutionary hybrid and electric models over diesel and petrol in a bid to become more environmentally friendly and cut fuel costs. Here we catch up with Craig to hear how that’s going. How have things been since we last talked fleet? Really good, thank you. Among many highlights, we’ve been awarded ou r GEO (Golf Environment Organisation) certification thanks to our approach to sustainable course management. What’s a typical working day for you and the team? Myself and the second-in-command are always in for 6am. I still hand cut the greens and bunker surrounds until 10am every morning and always feel I’ve earnt my mid-morning cup of coffee! I have a team of ten to oversee and there’ll always be clearance and upkeep work to do and spot checks for moisture levels and checking conditions for trueness, speed and firmness. What’s your overall approach to your role? My philosophy is not to fight nature and a links course is what it is because of the weather. That can lead to a dry course or, of course, a rather wet one! The R&A and our members fully support this approach, preferring to see and play a course that runs in harmony with its natural surroundings as best as possible. What has been your proudest moment? I feel proud every year the course improves and the members remain happy with its playability. What is the biggest challenge you face? Recently we’ve been trying to eradicate the rye grass on the greens and surrounds, bringing the turf back to a fine fescue and dent composition. That’s quite a challenge. A lot of course managers in the 50s and 60s were mis-sold the benefits of perennial rye grass and greenkeepers and players are still feeling the effect of that on courses today. Does your day ever throw you any surprises? If greenkeeping were a film it would be Groundhog Day! Rarely is there a surprise. If anything, it’s the weather that keeps us on our toes. And we’ve got to ask… what’s your favourite bit of Toro kit, and why? We’ve been doing a lot more hand-cutting now we have th e eFlex pedestrian mowers. Members love the fine finish. We can cut six greens on one charge and we’ve had them fitted with groomer brushes to help with lateral grass growth. Plus, they’ve brought us big savings on fuel. news lines . spring 2018 . 09 Fairway aeration Felixstowe Ferry gets fresh Felixstowe Ferry Golf Club in Suffolk has opted for Toro again as it scales up its fairway aeration programme. Th e Toro ProCore SR72 wide surface aerator has been purchased through Reesink alongside a TYM T603 tractor to pull it. With a working width of 72 inches, the SR72 is a good choice for large scale aeration and is the perfect partner to the club’s smaller Toro ProCore SR48, says course manager Glenn Rayfield. Purchased to tow the SR72 is the 60hp T603 tractor, which enables the club to scale up its tractor tasks, bringing the power to do all the jobs the club previously couldn’t. Glenn explains: “We chose the T603 because it can handle large volume equipment.” “Aeration is just one of many tasks it will be performing around the club. With it we can also tow flail mowers, hedge trimmers and larger trailers for construction.” A deciding factor in the decision to choose Toro and TYM again is Glenn’s previous experience with Reesink: “Over the years I’ve secured a friendship with our local representative Julian Copping, who provides good service, knowledge and can’t help enough.”