I’ve been a Golf Course Superintendant for the past 25 years and since June 2021 the superintendent at the Royal Malta Golf Club. For the last 10 years, I have been called into projects in which the golf course had major issues.
For me the key to success is EFFICIENCY. Many times when I go to a new project, I hear the same excuses: I don’t have money, I don’t have machinery, I don’t have staff. My goal is always to increase the crew’s efficiency by improving their training, organization, and motivation. With this increase in efficiency, in a short time we can multiply productivity, which in turn allows us to do more things in the same timeframe. The course improves daily. The longer we do things correctly and efficiently, the better the course will show. Continuous improvement
The improvements the members can perceive are that now we keep a high frequency of mowing, including weekends, we try to keep a high-quality playing surface every day, not just weekdays. Also, all workers are cross trained to use all our machinery which gives us flexibility in performing many jobs simultaneously. The jobs no longer depend on specific individuals. On the downside, this high frequency of mowing means that we use more petrol than before.
Improving efficiency also involves having a good team, selecting good workers, and discarding the bad ones. One bad worker can ruin a good worker’s motivation. Our club has a good “special team”. We have a very good mechanic, a good sprayer, and a dedicated irrigation tech. We are also building a motivated and enthusiastic operators team led by our famous Cristina Hernández, always happy and trying her best every day. She teaches the newcomers the attitude towards work that we want to have.
It is as important to train the workers as to educate the players to keep the golf course in good condition. For the benefit of all the members, players should respect the golf course following the rules, especially in the wintertime, where there is no grass growth for wear and divot recovery.
The following is a video of one of my previous projects where it shows how you can improve a golf course in a short time with better efficiency and organization.
Interviews at the end of the video are interesting to understand the process.
Lorenzo Basco Guimaraens
Point of view of JJ Micallef . RMGC Vice-Captain and National Team Golfer
The Royal Malta Golf Club as it is called, has not always been in the best of conditions, which might be putting it lightly, however we know that this is mainly down to the fact that the Golf Course was built over 110 years ago and we face many challenges, from poor foundations to water quality issues. Today we find ourselves in arguably the best time in the history of the Royal Malta Golf Club when it comes to current course conditions and this is simply down to the togetherness of all the Members, Staff, Committees, Chairman and most of all the Greens staff and head lead Green Keeper Lorenzo Basco.
I am a National Team Golfer that has represented Malta on countless occasions, from a very young age and today I can proudly tell any golfer to come and join us at the Royal Malta Golf Club for a round of golf and enjoy the cuisine of the Putters in and the amazing climate that the Mediterranean has to offer.