ALLETT ABROAD: Strongsville Soccer Club- Ohio, USA- Allett C34

ALLETT ABROAD: Strongsville Soccer Club- Ohio, USA- Allett C34

Nick Heyniger

Strongsville Soccer Club

Foltz / Ehrnfelt Park, Ohio, USA (President)

Tell me a little bit about your club

We have 3 programs of uses for our ground.

Recreational- We have 1,000 children using our pitches age 5 to 14

Travel / community- 300 children age 9 to 14

Premier / club- 180 children age 12 to 18

Staff : We have 4 ground staff at the club

Pitches : We have 14 pitches to look after between us

Championship field- We host 20 high school matches, 3 large tournament finals and some college games

As you can see Nick's pitches get a lot of usage over a season!

What Allett equipment do you have?

Allett C34 with 8 blade and a turf rake cartridge

Turf cut @ 1.00” (25mm) offers great ball roll speed and bounce

We purchased an Allett C34 interchangeable cartridge system recently as we needed to improve the health of our field and get rid of thatch. We wanted attractive aesthetically pleasing stripes which the Allett provides with its rear roller.

What did you use before cylinder mowers?

Before using a cylinder mower we used a large multi- wheel Venitrac mower which had a lowest cutting height of 2” . We sometimes used a SKAG mower if the grass was too high.

Why did you go for cylinder mowers?

We were looking for a lower height of cut height than our Venitrac mower could offer. Soccer is a sport that requires a low cut playing surface for great ball roll and bounce. We wanted great stripes and presentation which the Allett mowers are renowned for. We were also looking for improved turf health which we could do with the range of cartridges the Allett C34 offered. Using a cylinder mower to cut grass is also much better for the grass plant health as it is a much cleaner cut reducing the risks of disease. We wanted to manage the Poa Annua spread which the Allett Verticut cartridge can help with. A C34 is many machines in one unit so you're not only saving money not having to buy separate machines you're also saving space in the shed.

What are your thoughts on the turf rake cartridge? Are you having success with this?

We were late to start on the turf rake but once we started the results of removing material out of the field have been excellent especially late fall post fertilisation. We are looking forward to seeing how the pitches improve.

Playing games on a lower turf height has been a great benefit to the footballers. The speed of the ball roll has been greatly increased resulting in a quicker more exciting game for the spectators. Removing the cut grass using a grass box has been a great success in the “health” of the park itself. The thatch has been removed getting rid of that spongy feeling which can slow ball speed down as well as creating more serious issues such as drainage problems and drought. A lower height of cut also allows the park to dry out in wet weather.

We are looking forward to seeing how Nick's pitches improve from using his Allett C34 and cartridges.