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In Focus: SISGrass Shows Its Strength

Mon 10th Apr 2017 | Football Stadiums & Facilities

From Russia 2018 World Cup venues to Derby County, 2016 was the year to remember for SISGrass. fcbusiness speaks to Phil Blackwell, UK Project Director for the Cumbria based company about their remarkable year.

Why are clubs choosing SISGrass?

Until SISGrass came along there was only one stitched hybrid system on the market. The launch of SISGrass in 2015 has provided an alternative option for clients. We’ve improved on what’s already been achieved with these stitched systems in the past. We’ve looked at the type of yarn that is actually used in the system and we’ve spent a lot of time, money and effort in designing newer, faster and more accurate machines for the installation, which ultimately provides a better service for end users.

So innovation and speed of service are two key factors here?

Yes, innovation is a huge thing for SISGrass. All our machines are 90% electric and innovation in the machines has been extremely intense and we are continually looking to improve on these. Accuracy of the installation is something that we wanted to improve on. Because of the accuracy and the use of our technology on the machines we’re able to install pitches at a much faster pace.

What do you mean by accuracy?

Accuracy is the spacing that the fibres are stitched. We’ve developed machines that are protected by a patent and enable us to install the synthetic fibres at a much faster pace and with greater accuracy than previously possible. So, the standard spacing at which they’re installed is 2cm x 2cm and by using computers and lasers we’re able to install at those specifications incredibly accurately.

The synthetic fibre we use is a polyethylene yarn, which is used in FIFA certified fields and World Rugby approved synthetic surfaces all over the world. It’s an extremely popular, high quality yarn. It’s a very durable and very resilient yarn that recovers very well. Based on a 2cm x 2cm spacing there will be 1.2kg of yarn per m2. That equates to about 9.6tonnes of yarn on an 8000m2 pitch, which is substantially more yarn by weight, than other systems.

The yarn we use is two tones, so each strand of fibre is made up of six individual filaments - three are darker green and three are a lighter shade which gives an excellent natural appearance. The overall result is a more consistent and durable playing surface.

This attention to detail has helped you deliver an installation at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow where the World Cup Final in 2018 will be played. Tell me more about this?

SIS Pitches opened up its Russian business in 2011/12 and our first SISGrass installation was at the Luzhniki Stadium. With the introduction of SISGrass into our product range we’ve been able to present this, along with SISAir to clients over there for the World Cup. Because of what these pitches can offer they decided to install them for the World Cup.

This one is going to be the first time a World Cup Final has been played on this type of surface and a further three pitches with SISGrass are to be installed for the tournament.

Are there strict guidelines you have to meet when making an installation like this?

In pitch construction there are specifications that have to be followed. Generally when we design and build a pitch we work with specialist consultants who help us and make sure each construction meets the required performance standards.

Going forward what can we expect to see from SISGrass in 2017?

We’ve recently launched a new website, a key development in our change of brand identity as we look to open up in new territories such as Ireland where we’ve opened a new office. As part of our continued growth we’re also looking to introduce a a small SISGrass Universal machine that allows us to install smaller areas for those that may not require a full pitch, so for instance down the linesman runs or in the goal mouths – hard wearing areas. This will open up options to those clubs. The SISGrass Universal machine may also open up other markets and opportunities such as golf tees, tennis courts or cricket wickets - areas that haven’t been looked at in the past. ■

Leading The Field In Hybrid Pitch Technology

We are a world leader in the design, manufacture and installation of natural and synthetic sports surfaces. SISGrass is our flagship product – a technologically advanced reinforced turf system which combines the very best qualities of synthetic and natural surfaces.

On every project, we make absolutely sure that all of our pitches can stand up to all the challenges provided by busy stadia, competitive sports activity and environmental conditions.

Visit: www.sispitches.com

Tel: +44 (0) 1900 812796 or email: sales@sispitches.com

Posted by: Aaron Gourley 

If you have any football business related news stories you’d like to share then please contact us – agourley@fcbusiness.co.uk

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