Toro oldies
but goldies

We thought we'd revisit some of the stories that in the past few months have really put a smile on our faces. After months of strange times, they are welcome morale boosters for us to leave you with!

Proving that Toro stands the test of time are two machines which have been found, brought to our attention and put back out on the golf course for old times’ sake.

Blast from the past

John Cockburn, right and Andy Smith, course manager with the Toro Greensmaster 3 last seen at the club in 1969 at West Herts Golf Club.

It all began with the first Toro Greensmaster 3 ride-on mower sold to the West Herts Golf Club in Hertfordshire in 1969. Fifty years later the Greensmaster 3 was back at the club where it all began, united with the person who sold it all those years ago.

Rochelle Bedford, marketing manager at Reesink, says: “When Toro celebrated its centennial milestone serving the golf industry across the world last year, it encouraged us to look back at how it all began for Toro in the UK and we discovered that the very first GM3 sold in the UK was still going 50 years later! Also uncovered was the club that bought the machine and who sold it!”

The person in question, John Cockburn, tells us how it all came about: “I was working for Flymo in 1968 when I was told we’d be receiving a prototype of a new machine to trial and debut at a three-day exhibition in Meyrick Park in Bournemouth. That machine was the Toro Greensmaster 3 and Flymo ordered 14 machines, one of which I installed at West Herts Golf Club.”

Andy Smith, course manager at West Herts Golf Club since 1993, says it was a ‘blast from the past’ having the GM3 back at the club: “Seeing the GM3 really took me back to how things used to be. West Herts is a Toro club through and through. From the very beginning it recognised the quality of Toro and all these years later, we still consider it to be the brand to be beaten.”

Vintage Toro won in eBay auction

Dan Ashelby giving the Toro Greensmaster, which is thought to have been manufactured in 1971, a one-off outing on a bowling green.

Some eBay finds are just pure gold. In this case, a vintage circa. 1971, unused and undoubtably collectable Toro 21” Greensmaster pedestrian mower, which cuts like a dream.

The listing was won by Toro’s Student Greenkeeper of the Year Award 2018 winner Dan Ashelby’s dad, Mark from Mark Ashelby Grounds who has spent 25 years in sports turf management and knows a good deal when he sees one.

One of the precursors to the hugely successful and enduring Toro Greensmaster 1000 greensmowers range, Dan says of his Dad’s win: “We couldn’t believe it when we saw the listing. The machine was bought new by a cricket club in the early 1970s but never used. It’s in mint condition with no wear anywhere. It came with the original user manual and the original stickers on the engine. The red paint is still freshly painted like new on the cutting reels!

"It was bought as a collectible and is too good to use, but we couldn’t resist setting it up and giving it a quick one-off outing on a bowling green. And she cut like a dream."

So, what’s next for this rare vintage find? Dan says: “The rest of its life will be much like that of a classic car, enjoying the occasional run out on a nice sunny day!”

Brightening up our lockdown were these fantastic Twitter posts from Toro’s sports fields and grounds district sales manager Matt Anderson, creating a little Lego Toro fleet. There were a Groundsmaster 5900-D, GeoLink sprayer and Workman HDX-D brightening up our days working from home.

Lockdown Lego

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Time Machine

Toro oldies but goldies

Proving that Toro stands the test of time are two machines which have been found, brought to our attention and put back out on the golf course for old times’ sake.

Read full story >