Distributor Lely says that a highly-successful programme of training courses it is running for Toro turf equipment users and dealer staff are unique in the industry. The company claims that no other distributor offers such a comprehensive, year-round training programme on behalf of a similar manufacturer.
Indeed, the huge popularity of the courses led to over 600 people attending them last year, and end-user sessions are still constantly oversubscribed.
The majority of the courses run for two days and take place at a special training school with a fully-equipped workshop plus classroom facilities for up to 20 at Lely's St Neots, Cambridgeshire, headquarters.
Ian Sumpter, UK training manager for the company's Toro Turf Division, said: "This training ensures our customers and dealers get the very best from their Toro machinery, and means we are able to work together in a closer, more fruitful partnership We see it as an investment which leads the way and sets us apart from the competition."
Courses for end-user customers include sessions on cutting technology - covering how to set up cutting units - and aftercut appearance trouble-shooting; a greenkeeper mechanic's course, which deals with servicing, fault-finding and day-to-day maintenance; and a sprayer technician course for those who need to calibrate and set up Toro sprayers. A one-day health and safety course for operators, carried out at their own site, is also offered.
Will Harris, workshop manager at Minchinhampton Golf Club, in Gloucestershire, is among those impressed with the whole set-up, after attending a Level 2 greenkeeper mechanics course earlier this year. "I really learned a lot, especially about fault-finding with electrics and how to set up the machinery," says Will. "The hospitality side was first class, too. I'm hoping to do another more advanced course next year."
Deputy course manager at Bedfordshire Golf Club, James Lindsay, attended a cutting technology course and also gained a great deal from the experience. "The course taught me how to get the best out of Toro cutting units by setting up the blades correctly to ensure we get the finest, smoothest cut on greens, and avoid tearing the grass, which can stress the turf or bring on disease," James says. "We're getting more out of the blades now - they last longer and don't need sharpening so often. I really enjoyed the training, it was well run and very professional."
The courses are open to all users of Toro equipment. For more details contact Ian Sumpter on 01480 226800.