3 Aug 2018

Pitch Perfect at the Ricoh Arena

Tags:Football · Hybrid · Rugby · XtraGrass

Following another busy season at dual-use stadium, the Ricoh Arena, the hybrid XtraGrass pitch has been successfully renovated ready for the start of the season this coming Saturday with Coventry City FC’s first home match.

Moving into its fourth year, the pitch last season saw over 50 fixtures take place for Wasps RFC and Coventry City FC, as well as community and corporate events and a Rolling Stones Concert. In preparation for the sell-out concert on Saturday 2 June, the Grounds Team carried out a deep scarification to penetrate the surface to remove any debris. This was followed by aeration and finally an intense spray to improve the stress tolerance on the grass with the concert flooring placed on it.

“Keeping the Ricoh Arena’s pitch in healthy condition throughout the year is a priority, and as such, we have made additional investment in trialling new approaches with GreenFields earlier on in the close season to prepare the pitch for the winter months."

Justine Hewitt, Head of Operations, Ricoh Arena

The experienced GreenFields Grounds Team responsible for maintaining the GreenFields hybrid XtraGrass system got to work on the pitch as soon as the big names performing at the concert vacated the stage. The work began with mowing to a cut height of 15mm combined with a light scarification and brushing to remove any dead vegetation.

The pitch was then verti-drained to provide deep aeration followed by the application of 60 tonnes of sand to top dress the surface. To complete the renovations the Grounds Team applied pre-seeding fertiliser as well as grass seed.

Time for the pitch to re-establish itself was allowed at the end of the renovation period aided by additional processes from the Grounds Team to positively promote the grass growth.

Mark Bucknall, Operations Manager for GreenFields commented: “The Grounds Team have done an excellent job with the renovations this year and the pitch is looking fantastic ready for the first fixture on Saturday.”

With XtraGrass, the addition of synthetic grass combined with natural grass substantially increases playing hours providing a better, more stable surface for rugby and football.

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