Dr Stephen Baker of the Sports Turf Research Institute has compiled his interim report on the Spotland pitch after carrying out a series of assessments on the pitch earlier this week.
Officials of Rochdale AFC, Rochdale Hornets RLFC and the Stadium Company agreed to commission a report on the pitch to determine why there are contrasting conditions between the two halves of the pitch.
The interim report finds that the soil depth is inconsistent, with the profile of the soil in some areas of the Sandy Lane end not as good as other parts of the pitch. This is resulting in the inconsistent infiltration rate and the inconsistent look of the pitch at this time.
It should, however, be kept in mind that November and December saw record rainfall in Rochdale, with three times the average amount falling last month. This has caused the back-up and damage in these areas.
Given the time of year, Dr Baker recommends that in the short-term the ground staff continue the work they have been doing over the winter months. This will see them continue to heavily verti-drain and sand the pitch.
Dr Baker will return a full report in due course, making recommendations for the summer renovation program to ensure the Spotland pitch is returned to the excellent condition that we have witnessed in recent seasons and prior to the record rainfall.