Ninety-Nine Toro 'Horses gallop round York Racecourse

Amy Ellinghamin Equestrian

AYork RC top-of-the-range Toro Groundsmaster 5900-D mower - with a whopping 99hp engine - is giving the horses a run for their money at York Racecourse.

The 5900-D is Toro's front-running wide-area rotary mower, thanks to its 4.9m/16ft cutting width and mowing rate of up to 8.4 hectares per hour. This made the machine a firm favourite with grounds manager Adrian Kay, who's responsible for the maintenance of the 10-hectare course.

"We chose the Groundsmaster because of its huge cutting width yet light weight," Adrian reveals. "We've got a lot of mowing to do here and we wanted something that would do the job as efficiently as possible. We can't wait to get started with it once the grass-growing season gets underway."

And - with all those horses' hooves hitting the turf race after race, together with spectator footfall - York, like most racecourses, suffers from soil compaction. Hence Adrian has also invested in a new tractor-mounted Toro ProCore SR70-S deep tine aerator, perfect for alleviating subsurface soil compaction for healthier turf.

"We've recently done some construction work to the site, which has caused heavy compaction in concentrated areas - particularly those where the crowds congregate," Adrian adds. "The ProCore is ideal for relieving this, having proved itself in a demo."

Adrian says that Toro's solid reputation also contributed to his purchasing decision. "Toro are the world-leaders in turf machinery," he concludes. "I want to get the job done with as little downtime as possible, and their machines are more reliable than most. I also like the backup service I get from Lely and my dealer, K&M Mowers."

For more information on Toro machinery, contact your local Toro dealer. Alternatively, call distributor Lely UK on 01480 226800 or visit

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