January 01, 2012
The Taos Eco-Park passes stringent FIFA requirements for the second year in a row
Retaining these key performance qualities after one year of play is difficult and requires a high quality turf product and proper maintenance to perform at the high level required by FIFA.
Recently, the Taos Eco Park, located in Taos, New Mexico, underwent the FIFA Quality Concept Testing for the second year and received its highest rating, a 2-Star Recommended status.
“We are pleased that the Shaw Sportexe PowerBlade HP+ field installed at Taos Eco Park has been retested after one year of play and found to meet the stringent requirements for the FIFA 2 STAR Recommended level of performance,” said Phil Stricklen, Shaw’s Director of Sports Turf R&D. “Retaining these key performance qualities after one year of play is difficult and requires a high quality turf product and proper maintenance to perform at the high level required by FIFA.”
The Taos Eco Park field features Shaw Sportexe’s PowerBlade HP+ turf system which consists of a 2.5” monofilament fiber and a mixture of sand and rubber infill. In addition to safety and durability characteristics, PowerBlade HP+ is an engineered system built for performance needs where athlete-surface and ball-surface interactions are critical.
“Turf products that are not properly designed and properly maintained will lose the ball control and athletic performance that FIFA requires for high level soccer competition,” said Stricklen. “The durability of the monofilament fibers used to make the Shaw Sportexe PowerBlade product assures the performance will be there year-after-year.”
Taos Eco-Park is currently the highest altitude FIFA 2-Star training facility in the world. Located 7,000 feet above sea level, Taos Eco-Park is used to aid professional and international soccer teams and players with training in high altitude environments, in addition to youth and community events in various sports including, but not limited to, American football, rugby and lacrosse.
“Taos is an exceptional vacation destination, traditionally known for our incredible outdoor adventure offerings and our status as The Original Art Colony in the U.S. Adding team sports and high altitude training opportunities to our roster of visitor offerings has been a wonderful boost for travel – regional and international” said Town of Toas Mayor Darren Cordova. “Leading that effort is our Taos Eco Park facility, and its certification as a FIFA 2 Star Field – enabled by the leadership of Shaw Sportexe. Our recent recertification is a major reaffirmation for Taos as a special place for team and high altitude sports – youth, amateur adult, and professional.”
Joel Israel, Taos Sports Alliance’s Executive explained that the “ FIFA 2-Star Field Certification means [that] Taos Eco Park remains one of only four FIFA 2-Star fields in the United States. Soccer teams ranging from Rwanda’s U17 National Team to the top ranked UNM Lobos have played on this field. Every player agrees this is the best synthetic field they’ve played on in their careers.”
Earlier this year, the Rwanda Soccer Federation selected Taos Eco-Park as the site for their FIFA U17 World Cup Final training. Head Coach Richard Tardy said “this is one of the best synthetic fields we have played on at the national level. Smooth, fast, everything you would want. And being that the FIFA 2-Star pitch was designed specifically for high altitude play, it was the perfect spot for training before taking the world stage. We definitely benefited from our time at Taos.”
About Shaw Sportexe
A subsidiary of Berkshire Hathaway, Inc. Shaw Sportexe is one of the leading synthetic turf companies in North America. Shaw Sportexe has represented quality and innovation for more than two decades with over 900 successful installations, including an impressive list of high-profile field installations. For more information, please visit http://www.shawsportexe.com, call 866-703-4004 or find us on Facebook.