With a big increase in footfall expected this summer, Bridport and West Dorset Golf Club now has the latest Toro Groundsmaster 4500-D rotary in its armory to ensure the greenkeeping team keeps on top of course maintenance at what is described as something of a grass factory.
The club decided to upgrade to the latest model after its existing machine put in nine years hard work mowing semi-roughs, clocking up an impressive 4,500 hours over the time.
Located on the cliffs overlooking Lyme Bay and the Chesil Beach to Portland, the 6,213-yard course offers stunning views - making it a popular choice year round. But with two holiday parks sitting adjacent to the club, a dramatic increase in players and visitors is anticipated come summer.
"When it came to replacing the 4500 we looked around at a range of other mowers," says head greenkeeper Chris Tozer. "The 4500 had been pretty much in operation full time in the summer, the semi-roughs needing to be maintained to two inches. This really means once you have finished mowing it is time to start again."
After trying a number of alternative mowers, the 4500's replacement was chosen; a new Toro 4500-D took its place.
In Chris's words no other mower came close to meeting what the new mower offers. But is the 'new' model better than its identically numbered predecessor?
"You would expect a new machine to cut better than a well-used model, but I have to say the finish we get with the latest mower is really excellent. We block mow to provide distinct shading against the fairways. These are striped using a Toro 5610 that has now clocked over 5,800 hours with us. The contrast we achieve looks fantastic."
Of course it is the mower's performance and quality of cut that are important, but Chris adds that the new 4500-D has a host of detail developments that make it easier and more comfortable to use than its predecessor. The layout of the controls is one area he singles out for praise, these helping to just make the new machine more operator-friendly.
Chris adds: "The new 4500 also has a reversible cooling fan. On the previous model we had to keep an eye on the engine temperatures as the radiators could get blocked with clippings. A regular clean was needed. On the new mower the radiator keeps clear. We have not needed to blow it clean. A small detail but one we really appreciate."
Toro turf products are distributed throughout mainland UK by Lely (UK) Limited, 1 Station Road, St Neots PE19 1QH. Call 01480 226800, email email@example.com or visit www.lely.com for further details.