Golf Course Architecture - Issue 61, July 2020

79 developed by Texas firm Bladerunner Farms, and marketed in Asia by Sports Turf Solutions. Zeon was used on the 2016 Olympic course in Rio and has since created a lot of buzz among warm season turf aficionados. Ramsey says: “Zeon was the natural choice for this project – not only does it have major maintenance benefits over any other warm season grass, but its playability is excellent. The blades are very strong, so the ball sits up, which is good for normal club play, when most people ‘sweep’ the ball. But you can also mow it down low if you want to encourage players to compress the ball, which is ideal for tournament play.” David Doguet, who developed the turf, says: “Bermuda and paspalum have been the norm up to now for golf in warmer climates. We have been looking at Zoysia grass since the early 1990s, and have developed several new strains, but Zeon is the best yet. Its main differentiating factor has to do with low maintenance: less water, less fertiliser, less chemicals, less mowing, minimal disease pressure and less thatch. Combine that with shade and salt tolerance, you have a very sustainable plant without the inputs while still providing a quality playing surface. Zeon Zoysia has become the most used Zoysia grass worldwide for all of the reasons reported. It continues to be the standard for the highest quality playing surface with the least amount of inputs.” The rebuild of Seletar is a resourceful and thoughtful project, which is perhaps more about engineering than it is about pure ‘artistic’ golf design. But then, that is absolutely necessary in an environment like Singapore, where difficult weather conditions combine with high costs and extreme pressure on land to create a very challenging environment both for golf architects and their clients, the clubs. Given the nature of the project and the environment, the build was inevitably highly complex: much credit for its success, therefore, goes to project manager Owen Hester of Green Dynasty, who brought it in on time and below budget. David Dale says that he believes Seletar has the opportunity to establish itself as a leading facility in the country, in which golf is wildly popular. He and his partner have done the club a great deal. GCA The par-three second hole on Golfplan’s revised layout. Left, A lake along the left edge of the par-five fourth hole separates the fairway from the new public pathway that runs alongside the course Photos: Golfplan