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Rangers Football Club Bend It Like Hunter

When the world class Rangers Football Club of Glasgow, Scotland, decided to kick it up and upgrade their home, the 51,082-capacity Ibrox Stadium, they turned to Turf Irrigation Services, Ltd. (TIS), who then picked Hunter Industries to team up.

This particular Scottish Premiere League team is not one to settle for anything less than the best, having won 51 world titles and racking up more major trophies than any other football club worldwide. So, naturally, they have some pretty high standards. Some of the club's needs included:

  • Flexibility to irrigate different areas within the pitch with individual head control
  • No large sprinklers in outer perimeter of turfed area where TV cameras are located
  • The ability to "slick down" playing surface pre-match and at halftime, with a maximum 12 minute window
  • The ability to select individual areas to slick down as they become available
  • A simple control system still sophisticated enough to anticipate varying client needs

TIS collaborated with R. Smith and A.D. Mortram of the Sports Turf Research Institute (STRI) and Hunter's John Shepherd to ensure that the Rangers' continued to dominate the international football scene.

For the center sprinklers, TIS installed eight Hunter I-90s, the industry's longest distance rotary sprinkler sports fields, with sod cups at 24.5 m spacing, each with individual head control from Hunter 1.5" ICV solenoids with Accu-Set. Eight I-90s were also installed along the sidelines, four on each side, each with 180 degree arc. Along the goal lines, eight G995E sprinklers were installed, four on each end, also with 180 degree arcs. These were installed directly onto the ring without individual isolators. The system passed the consultants' pressure (Creep) test with the eViH sprinklers and solenoid valves "live". No leaks were detected.

At each goal mouth, one Hunter I-20 was set inside each net, at a 90 degree arc, each on their own 1" Hunter ICV with Accu-Set. And for the collar sprinklers, 76 MP Rotators, set at 180 degrees at 5 m spacing, were installed along the outside and spraying onto the turfed area.

A single Hunter ACC-99D was installed to control the entire project, and the new ROAM remote will be used as well.

Not only were all system needs met, but also all installations were easily accomplished during construction, within seven days of the season start date, so that the Rangers F.C. may continue to rouse their rival Celtics, every match, every year.

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