Immaculate Rough at Ratho Park
By Peter Driver
Tom Murray, head greenkeeper at Ratho Park Golf Club in Midlothian, has recently purchased a Jacobsen HR4600 triple deck rotary mower to maintain the rough and semi-rough at the superb 5932 yard parkland course.
Purchased from local grounds care dealer, Fairways GM, the HR4600 is ideal for maintaining Ratho Park, which is bounded on two sides by the Union Canal and completely encircled by trees. It has a 2.3 metre cutting width, excellent manoeuvrability especially in the wooded environment and prodigious output of up to 3 hectares per hour.
The Club boasts one of the finest clubhouses in the country situated within the magnificent former mansion house which has been transformed following several refurbishments, the latest in 2000 celebrating the Millennium.
Tom Murray joined the greenkeeping team as an apprentice in 1974, just after Tom O'Brien, the renowned course designer left. In 1978 he became an assistant and in the mid-80s was promoted to first assistant. In 1987 he was appointed head greenkeeper, a position he has held for almost 20 years. Tom's ability is well recognised and has won awards, both Scottish and British, for his expertise
"Our policy here at Ratho is to cherry pick the best machine for any particular application and in that way we don't favour any particular manufacturer, but select the best machine for the job. I have five in my team and each one of them gets the opportunity to evaluate each piece of equipment. I prepare a questionnaire in advance of the demonstrations, which each completes and we end up with a points scoring matrix which determines the preferred machine. It's a team decision and in this case the HR4600 was a clear winner", he said.
Web site Ransomes/ Jacobsen