Located just an hour’s drive from Helsinki, Kytäjä Golf is one of the top courses in Finland. It includes two 18-hole courses, South-East and North-West, both designed by Canadian golf course architect Thomas McBroom.
“Quality standards for both of our courses have been always high,” said Jukka Koivu, CEO of Kytäjä Golf. “We want to offer the best possible conditions for all of our players and visitors to practice and play. With the renewed agreement with Hako, we can be confident that we are investing in machines that represent the same level of quality while also helping to reduce our maintenance and repair costs.”
To maintain this high quality level for the future, Kytäjä Golf renovated all the greens of the South-East course at the beginning of the 2020 season. Changes in the course were taken into account in the selection of new machines.
As part of the multi-year contract, Kytäjä Golf changed out the majority of its fleet with 28 new Toro machines in the spring of 2020. This included Toro Reelmaster hybrid fairway mowers, Groundsmaster wide-area mowers, Greensmaster greens mowers (including hybrid TriFlex and Flex™ models), Sand Pro bunker rakes and a GreensPro greens roller. In addition, the course purchased a Toro Multi Pro sprayer, a ProCore aerator and several Workman GTX utility vehicles.
“We considered what kind of machines we would need to maintain the renewed greens,” explained Antti Koskela, master greenkeeper of Kytäjä Golf. “But we ended up making updates to our entire fleet because we also wanted to improve other areas on both courses.”
According to Koskela, Finnish weather can be challenging, with conditions ranging from snow to extreme heat over the course of a season. This sets certain requirements for greenkeeping. However, because Hako Ground & Garden has been their machinery supplier since the beginning, Toro products are already familiar for Kytäjä greenkeeping staff.
“Our team already knows the quality of Toro products,” Antti continued. “Reliable machinery makes our work so much easier and more efficient. Cooperation with Hako has been easy for us, and we especially appreciate their technical support and customer service.”
Hako sales manager Jesse Kaan is pleased that the greenkeeping staff of Kytäjä Golf are satisfied with Toro machines and trust the services of his distributorship. “It’s great that Kytäjä Golf is looking to make long-term improvements to their course and facilities,” Kaan said. “Toro invests heavily in research and product development, so our customers can enjoy the best available products. For Kytäjä Golf, we were able to build a highly functional entity for their needs.”
In the last few years, there has been a trend in Finland with suppliers forming long-term cooperative contracts with golf courses and Hako continues to grow these types of partnerships, including Kytäjä Golf.
Partnerships like these point toward a hopeful outlook for the industry worldwide as positive trends emerge. Even during the COVID-19 pandemic, many courses are reporting increased demand as players recognize the opportunity to enjoy an outdoor activity where natural social distancing is possible.
The National Golf Foundation reported rounds of golf in the U.S. were up 6% nationally in May, 14% in June and 20% in July compared to the same months in 2019.
In addition, the 2019 European Golf Participation Report produced by the R&A alongside the European Golf Association (EGA) reported that 2019 saw the cumulative total of registered golfers across Europe rise for the first time in ten years, with 34% of markets showing growth. In this report, Finland was among the top five European countries with the highest player demand on golf courses.