Victoria National Golf Club, in Newburgh, Indiana, is ranked 43 in Golf Digest’s 100 greatest golf courses in America. Best Sand, a proven, well-known brand of Fairmount Santrol, is trusted throughout the country. Together, Victoria National and Best Sand continue to create repeatable experiences with playing consistency for members, guests, and professionals at the nationally acclaimed course in southwest Indiana. “When you’re on a national stage, your course must be as consistent as possible whether you’re talking about the hazards, tees, or greens,” said Kyle Callahan, director of Agronomy for Victoria National.
Preserving the design
Callahan and his team have a primary goal: to preserve the 418-acre course designed by Tom Fazio, the award-winning golf course architect. The team rakes 58 bunkers over two acres five times per week. Besides raking, Callahan’s team edges and weeds, in addition to removing silt and shifting sand into proper places after checking depth and firmness totals. Bunker maintenance, other than raking, accounts for three full weeks each season on this course. Annual offseason enhancements include replacing some of the bunker sand. Since 1998, the team has filled them with Best Sand’s bunker sand. The sand ensures consistent conditions for championship play and the everyday golfer.
Maintaining the consistency
High-quality sand is the name of the game. Callahan understands the finer points of sand selection to maintain playing consistency. “At a higher-end club, consistency is a big thing with players, especially when you’re hosting an event,” he said. “When you play one bunker that’s soft and one that’s firm or you have a soft green and a green rolling faster, that’s really where you would be ridiculed as a superintendent or director.”
That’s not the case at Victoria National where these experts keep everything on course. Presenting a clean, white appearance that accentuates the Fazio design also factors into the sand selection. Best Sand’s Tour Grade Signature Blend enables the bunkers to keep their desired appearance following rain. “Obviously, the sand color is vital,” said Callahan. “How well does the sand hold color? This is an important point in such a widespread natural area. White sand really makes the course pop.”
Supporting the customer
In addition to the sand’s consistency of play and color, Callahan compliments Best Sand representatives for adapting to his schedule. The professional relationship with Terry Gwinn, Best Sand’s sales manager, allows Callahan to meet the all of the job’s demands, including preparation for the United Leasing & Finance Championship each spring at Victoria National.
Gwinn also enjoys working with Callahan and his team at Victoria National because of their skilled approach to work and interest in high-quality sand. Best Sand is the only bunker sand that can be found on 30 of the top 100 golf courses in the US. Professionals and everyday players appreciate the championship-level look.
Callahan values the outstanding product and customer service. “That’s probably the biggest thing about our network: Can you respond to a crisis? With Terry, I call him and say, ‘Can you help?’ He jumps through hoops. That’s always big for us.”