AUGUSTA, GA (March 3, 2009) – Club Car’s new golf car fleet management system is helping the University of Texas Golf Club tell its members “no” without ever having to say the word.
Like most courses, the Austin club has some places, including native rough areas with minimal irrigation, where it would rather its players and golf cars not go. The course’s cart paths also have a few sharp turns and steep downhill areas where the club wants to make sure players proceed slowly and with caution.
Now, with the help of Club Car’s Guardian SVC system, which operates based on GPS technology, the University of Texas club programs its golf cars to keep players away from environmentally sensitive areas and to slow to safe speeds at certain points on the course.
“The system eliminates things people don’t like on a golf course, like marshals telling them what they can’t do and ropes and stakes that take away from the beauty of the course,” says Greg Garner, head golf professional at the private course in Austin. “It’s a much cleaner approach to educating your members.”
Using the golf car industry’s first Local Interconnect Network, which allows the vehicle’s controller and on-board computer to communicate in real time, Guardian makes it easy for course managers to define restricted areas and limit vehicle access and maximum speed anywhere on the course. “I don’t think it could be any simpler,” Garner said.
The private University of Texas Golf Club is the first course to install the Guardian system, which is designed to help golf facilities protect their course and their players while lowering operating costs. The system, which can be accessed from any computer with an Internet connection, is capable of limiting vehicle access, controlling vehicle speed, reviewing the history of where a golf car has been driven and monitoring and diagnosing vehicle performance.
Mancil Davis, head golf professional at Canongate at The Woodlands in The Woodlands, Texas, who participated in a product demonstration at the PGA Merchandise Show in Orlando, can relate to the awkwardness of confronting members over minor transgressions. He appreciates Guardian’s ability to prevent unauthorized use of golf cars by locking down vehicles until golfers have checked in at the pro shop and paid their fees.
“We have a handful of members who have a tendency to bypass the shop and jump on the course,” Davis said. “That’s lost (golf car rental) revenue for us. But confronting members on an issue like that can be uncomfortable. It would be a lot better if we didn’t have to have that conversation.”
David Yanez, golf course superintendent at The Grand GC in San Diego, Calif., who saw the product demonstrated during the Golf Industry Show in New Orleans earlier this month, was impressed with the system’s round-replay and safety features.
“Our mechanics spend a lot of time fixing carts that are damaged on the golf course. The golfer may say, ‘It was like that when I got it,’ but this system gives us recourse to show when and where the damage occurred so we can charge the person responsible,” Yanez said.
“We have a lot of fairly steep grades and switchbacks. So having the ability to control speed is a great feature from a safety standpoint,” Yanez added. “The first time you avoid a lawsuit because you’ve prevented an accident, you have more than paid for this system.”
Guardian also monitors the golf car’s electrical system to prevent a vehicle from going onto the course with an insufficient charge to complete the round. Diagnostic capabilities help course technicians identify and address potential vehicle faults.
“The system provides an unbelievable amount of information,” Davis says. “And it’s not just fluff – it’s valuable information that would help us manage our fleet more effectively.”
Club Car worked with GPS Industries (GPSI), a Sarasota, Fla.-based global media and technology firm, to develop the Guardian software. GPSI will provide assessments, installations and
training to Club Car customers.
The Guardian system is offered on Club Car’s 2009 Precedent models equipped with the company’s Excel drive system. It also can be installed in the field on existing 2008 Precedent i2 and i2L Excel models.
Club Car, a business of Ingersoll-Rand Company Limited, a diversified industrial firm, Honors the Game in its service to customers and support of the golf industry. Club Car is the exclusive premier partner of the National Golf Course Owners Association in the U.S. and NGCOA Canada’s exclusive Golf Car Supplier and Platinum Partner. Club Car is also a sponsor of the European Golf Course Owners Association, a Silver Partner of the GCSAA and a Corporate Advantage Partner of the Club Managers Association of America. It is the Official Supplier of Golf Cars and Utility Vehicles to the 2010 Ryder Cup, the Official Golf Car and Golf Utility Vehicle and an Official Sponsor of the PGA European Tour, the official supplier of golf cars and utility vehicles to PGA Tournament Players Clubs, and leading sponsor of the PGA Professional National Championship, The First Tee and the Executive Women’s Golf Association.
About Club Car
Club Car provides fleet, turf, hospitality and financing solutions for golf, agricultural, recreational and industrial markets. For more information on Club Car, go to www.clubcar.com. Based in Augusta, Ga., Club Car is part of the Industrial Technologies sector of Ingersoll-Rand Company Limited. Ingersoll Rand (NYSE: IR) is a global diversified firm providing products, services and solutions to enhance the quality and comfort of air in homes and buildings, transport and protect food and perishables, secure homes and commercial properties and increase industrial productivity and efficiency. Driven by a 100-year-old tradition of technological innovation, we enable our customers to create progress and a positive impact in their world. For more information, go to www.ingersollrand.com.
Bill Bryant, Bryant Marketing Communications
(678) 366-3232, firstname.lastname@example.org