Kubota UK, the market leading machinery manufacturer, has signed up as an partner of Northampton Saints – one of the biggest and best supported teams in the Aviva Premiership, England’s top flight of Rugby Union.
The deal, announced at the club’s Franklin’s Gardens stadium, has already seen the Kubota brand ideally positioned on the back of the Northampton Saints rugby shirts. Kubota machinery will also be used by the club’s expert groundcare team, ensuring its pitch and training facilities are kept in first class condition.
“Partnering the club really is the perfect match for the Kubota brand. Northampton Saints’ success over the years has been based on a commitment to excellence and performing to the highest standards, all achieved with a strong focus on teamwork and performance.”Dave Roberts, Kubota UK, Managing Director
Dave Roberts, Managing Director of Kubota UK, commented: “Northampton Saints are one of the biggest clubs in European rugby, with a number of players due to represent their countries in the upcoming RBS Six Nations championship.
“Partnering the club really is the perfect match for the Kubota brand. Northampton Saints’ success over the years has been based on a commitment to excellence and performing to the highest standards, all achieved with a strong focus on teamwork and performance.
“At Kubota UK, we share these same values. We have earned a fantastic reputation in our core markets for providing high performance, quality and reliable products through an excellent independent dealer network, all backed up with first class aftersales support. The partnership is therefore a great fit for our business.”
Allan Robson, CEO of Northampton Saints, said: “Here at Northampton Saints we have the highest standards in every area of the organisation. Having quality pitches is at the heart of what we do, as it gives the playing squad the ability to put in the best possible preparation during the week and then play winning rugby on match days.
“Kubota is a world leading manufacturer of the equipment that we need to maintain and prepare our playing and training pitches. The tractors and vehicles are already being worked hard by our ground staff!”
Along with the back of shirt sponsorship on all kit for home, away and European matches, Kubota have access to player appearances and will be the official match day sponsor for the Saints’ key home game against London Irish on Saturday 13th February.
Part of the partnership deal also sees Northampton Saints’ groundcare team using a Kubota Grand GL40 Series mid-range tractor to help maintain the Franklin’s Gardens pitch and training grounds, whilst the Kubota RTVX900 will serve the team as a general utility vehicle. The machines have been supplied by local Kubota dealer George Browns Ltd, who will also be providing ongoing service and aftersales support.
Wayne Billing, head groundsman at Northampton Saints, said: “The maintenance and upkeep of our rugby pitches is critical, which means using the right equipment to ensure our playing surfaces are in the best condition is vital. Kubota machinery is renowned for being the best on the market for performance and reliability, so we are delighted to be working in partnership with them and George Browns.”
The Kubota L5040 GST tractor, part of the Grand L40-II Series range, firmly places the operator in the driving seat, with the cab designed for optimum operator comfort, enabling high productivity to be maintained throughout the working day. Deluxe seat and extended legroom are a staple, accompanied by big improvements to the control panel which improve ease of use for the end user and heighten performance.
Access to the operational and hydraulic controls and levers is easy thanks to the size of the control panel, with the ergonomic design ideal for lever placement. Whilst the GST (glide shift transmission) gearbox functionality means that the Northampton Saints groundcare staff will not have to use the clutch to change gear, resulting in smooth and intuitive performance.
The Saints groundcare team will also be utilising Kubota’s much praised utility vehicle range – the RTV-X900. Featuring a powerful 21.6HP, 3-cylinder liquid cooled diesel engine, the new larger model improves on the reliable and robust performance of its predecessors.
Fitted with a high rigidity frame to help isolate passengers from noise and vibrations, the RTV-X900 is capable of handing loads of up to 500kgs in the cargo bed and a further towing capacity of 1000kgs. Its advanced additional breaking power ensures controlled driving on steep descents and across challenging terrain.
The most significant changes have been made inside of the cab, where 60:40 split bench seating, power steering, under seat storage compartments and a digital metre cluster have all been incorporated, alongside a horizontal opening front window.
For more information on Kubota and its extensive range of solutions, visit www.kubota.co.uk or call 01844 268000.