With 27 holes on modern championship links, the undulating coastal course of Princes Golf Club, Sandwich is more than a challenge for playing members and visitors.
It's just as much a challenge, if not more-so, for the greenkeepers who keep the entire facility in perfect championship fettle. In some conditions, traction on the steep inclines can be an issue, but with a recent investment in the new John Deere 8000AE, course manager, Sean McLean, has overcome the problem and at the same time, improved the quality of cut. The John Deere 8000AE is a three-wheel-drive, five cylinder hybrid mower, with 18" electric powered cylinders that hug the undulations even better than the 22" cylinders on their 2500Bs.
Commented Sean: "We've got some 16 John Deere machines on the course, including a new HD200 sprayer and with the back-up we get from David Guy and Burden Bros Agri, they give us great service.
"The 8000AE is more versatile than the 2500B, has better traction, but because it has narrower cylinders, we get a better quality finish on the surrounds and the run-off areas around the course.
"Having five cylinder units on the 8000AE, instead of three on the 2500Bs helps us save some time and keep ahead of golf. We also use grass boxes for the more refined finish. It has electronic control settings, which I can set for mowing speeds, turn speeds and transport.
"These settings can be locked, so no matter who is operating the machine, we get the same results throughout the course. This is going to be a great benefit for our players and visitors as we are always striving to improve the very best links golf playing conditions."