A trio of new Toros have already made a positive impact on Shirehampton Park Golf Club's beautifully maintained course since they arrived on site earlier this year
As part of a five-year partnership, a Toro Greensmaster TriFlex 3400-D, Reelmaster 3100-D and ProCore 648 aerator were delivered between February and March to the club, which sits just five miles from central Bristol.
For the new Toro customer, the £70,000 investment marks the first new machines Shirehampton Park has brought on board for over 10 years; a move made possible by opting for a lease agreement.
Club secretary Karen Rix says: "We are a small club with resources to match. We have a greens team of five, headed by Simon Kew. Traditionally we have bought in equipment as and when it is needed, sourcing it either used or as an ex-demonstrator to save money. But this year we took a different approach and have leased three new Toro machines."
With a membership of 350, the club competes with 10 other courses within the locality. While this means the club has some strong competition to retain its members, it's also kept those responsible for managing the club on their toes.
"We took delivery of our new Toro TriFlex ride-on greens mower in March," says deputy head greenkeeper Jamie Greenslade. "Fitted with both turf and roller brushes, the mower does a really lovely job. We used to hand mow for tournaments, but now I can see us using our pedestrian mowers only when it is very wet or in winter. The TriFlex leaves a good consistent finish and really has made a positive impact to the greens. The consistency is easily good enough for a tournament finish."
Like the new TriFlex mower, the new ProCore 648 aerator has had a noticeably positive impact and has seen extensive employment since its arrival.
"We have a really keen and supportive membership," says Jamie. "They have noticed an improvement in the greens already. We can now solid tine all 18 greens in a day, with the work having little or no impact on play. In fact players do not really notice we have been round with the machine. Our aim is to improve root depth as this will help prevent dry patches in summer. We do have greens irrigation but the soil here is very free draining and all bar one green are traditionally constructed. Our aim is to improve growing conditions through regular aeration."
The third member of the new equipment team is a Toro Reelmaster 3100-D Sidewinder, which joins an existing Toro fairway mower to look after the tees and approaches. Selected for its performance and ability to offset the cutting units to either side, the Sidewinder is also well-suited to mowing around the course's 27 bunkers and various banks.
"At 88 acres the course covers a relatively small area, but it is still a challenge to keep everything looking as it should," says Karen. "But, we have a great membership and are in good shape."
For more information, visit www.toro.com.