Phil Day Sports of Worcestershire has added a GKB Machines Drainmaster to their fleet of sports ground construction and maintenance equipment. Established in the late 1990's Phil Day's company has built a firm reputation as a leading sports turf contractor and specialist in the sports amenity sector. Their constant aim, they say, is to offer best value by constantly upgrading specialist equipment and machinery. They see the GKB Drainmaster as having a significant role in the work they carry out for their wide range of customers which includes Premier League football clubs, county cricket, top class rugby and golf clubs and leading independent schools.
As every turf professional and greenkeeper knows, surface water and pitches that stay wet for too long will always be an issue along with the cost and downtime for renovation. The GKB Drainmaster offers a complete solution to improving and accelerating the drainage of surface water. Toby Grace, Business Development Manager at Phil Day Sports, had been looking at investing in a secondary drainage system for a while and was impressed by what could be achieved with the Drainmaster. He and his team decided they were going to need one for a number of pending client requirements, including work at West Bromwich Albion F.C., Wasps Rugby and the STRI. Once ordered, after tender at the beginning of 2017, the GKB machine arrived within three weeks and was put to work with immediate results.
The Drainmaster excavates two or three trenches four centimetres wide which are positioned perpendicular to the existing underlying drainage. Soil removed is disposed of by means of conveyor belts and can be re-used as dressing soil. The trenches are filled with drainage sand up to the operating depth of 23cm in the same operation while the Drainmaster wheels press the sand into the trenches.
"We have found the Drainmaster does what it says with unique sandslits to the correct width and depth and we have seen excellent results." Says Toby. "With the way the sand bunker has been developed, you can choose to operate the full length of the pitch in one operation or two across the width. The grass grows on the trenches in a matter of weeks." The overall effect is strengthening of the grass while the drainage network ensures a higher playing capacity.
"The next real test will be in the winter months and with the changing weather we'll be carefully monitoring the results." Toby says. "For now we're very happy with the quality achieved and the service we have had. GKB as the manufacturer talk to us and we're providing feedback so it's a two-way traffic of information that helps us all."
GKB add that where there is a need to create a more even, well-functioning pitch you can combine the operations of the Drainmaster and their well-known Combinator for the optimum playing surface.