06 . news lines . summer 2019 The Open Championship at Royal Portrush with Toro Kit : 50-strong Toro fleet, plus tournament support fleet from Reesink, Toro Lynx central control system and Infinity, Flex and B-Series sprinklers. It was a Championship which broke records and had a most exciting and heart-warming ending as Ireland’s Shane Lowry won the 148th Open a t Royal Portrush in front of an excited home crowd. And it was one with which Toro was honoured to play a role. Toro machinery and irrigation saw Royal Portrush through the extensive preparations for the historic return of The Open Championship to Northern Ireland this year. Crews used Toro’s Flex 2120 pedestrian mowers for the greens, RM3550-D a nd RM3555-D mowers o n the fairways, approaches and surrounds, GR1000 an d TriFlex 3400 o n the tees, RM3100-D with Sidewinder system o n semi-roughs and GM4500-D on the roughs. In addition, the team uses a GR3250-D and GR1000 o n the practice area and a ProCore 648 for aerating the courses. Plus 25 additional Toro machines from Reesink joined the 50-strong Toro fleet already at the club. The irrigation is a Lynx central control system and Infinity, Flex a nd B-Series sprinklers. And then began the clear up. 237,750 people in attendance, around 400 TV buggies and hundreds of reporters, photographers and film crews, all taking their toll on the ground which was subjected to some tough weather conditions. 2,200 artic lorries-worth of equipment were required to de-rig and it’s a process course manager Graeme Beatt planned would take around five weeks. Of course, the recovery of the turf won’t be quite so quick. However, Graeme is confident that the successful partnership with Toro machinery and irrigation, Reesink and Lairds Grass Machinery that ensured the course was tournament ready will also ensure it’s a Championship that stays forever in memories and not in the turf. The relationship between Royal Portrush and Toro is a quarter of century old and for us there is no better machinery partner to ensure the optimum conditions for the players as well as the eyes of the sporting world. Graeme Beatt Course manager, pictured right ProLine H800 headlines latest Toro fleet deal at The Mere Kit : ProLine H800, 3 Reelmaster 3575-D mowers , Greensmaster TriFlex Hybrid 3420, 5 Workman GTX utility vehicles. Versatility is a long-cited reason for many Toro machinery purchases, and that’s one reaso n The Mere Golf Resort opted for the ProLine H800 in its latest Toro fleet deal which sees the brand’s relationship with the club reach 30 years. The 18-hole Championship course was created out of 150 acres of Cheshire parkland by James Braid in 1934. Now the mature trees provide not only considerable charm but a considerable amount of leaves to clear up! Having been recommended the ProLine H800, course manager John Quinn requested a demonstration of the high-volume collector to help tackle leaf collection, which was organised b y Cheshire Turf Machinery, and where the ProLine H800 certainly impressed. “We have a tree lined course and, particularly in winter when it’s wet, it can be a lot of work to clear up everything by hand. I’ve used a cut and collect machine before, but not one with enough capacity and power to pick up large piles of leaves which was no issue for the ProLine. Its versatility for core collecting after aerating and agility to easily manoeuvre while cutting in and around the trees will serve us well too.” All the machines arrived in time to focus on improving the playing surface and plant health, says John: “Last year was particularly trying with the weather. This year we’ll be doing everything we can to ensure the ultimate health and condition of the turf so no matter what conditions the weather throws at us, the turf is in the best position to cope and deliver the best play possible for our members. There was no doubt that helping us do that would be Toro.” Above In 2017, Royal Portrush’s irrigation system was upgraded to a Lynx central control system and Toro Infinity, Flex and B-Series sprinklers. Below Course manager John Quinn, centre, with Reesink’s Mike Turnbull, right, an d Cheshire Turf Machinery’ s Peter McGreevy with the Toro ProLine H800.