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Havkenscheider Park sports facility, Bochum

April 2023

LigaGrass Pro CoolPlus and Rekortan M at the Havkenscheider Park sports facility, Bochum

Action on the Western front

“Deep in the West” sings a drone of a thousand voices at home games of the VFL Bochum. “Bochum, I belong to you” is not only the official anthem of the Ruhr Stadium, but also the unofficial anthem for the entire city. Herbert Grönemeyer’s profession of love for Bochum is more than just a song – it is a statement for the entire region, for the “old” Ruhr area, which is not only famous for transporting coal and casting steel, but also its love of sport. VFL Bochum and its position in the first Bundesliga are only the figurehead for all the city has to offer: today, its sporting activities range from sports-orientated preschools and school sports to the “Integration through Sport” programme.

Unlike its name, the “Laer’sche Fußballclub 1906 e.V.” is forging new paths. For 10 years, it has had a strong women’s and girls’ division with teams ranging from U9s to seniors – and in general, the youth division in Laer is of high calibre. However, the district club in the heart of Bochum has long been dedicated to more than just football, attracting gymnasts and athletes as well. More recently, trending sports such as lacrosse and disc golf have also been added.

Strong interest in lacrosse not least prompted officials in the city council and the club to renovate the stadium on Havkenschneider Strasse from the ground up, not only to adapt it to the needs of the Bochum “Isotopes” lacrosse players, but to convert it into a complete district sports facility. In only eight months, three football fields were built: one large one and two mini-pitches.

In total, 10,200 square metres of synthetic turf were installed there – specifically, our LigaGrass Pro CoolPlus with sand infill. The classic among our synthetic turf systems, the LigaGrass Pro filament and its triangular cross-section ensure even greater fibre stability and give the turf more volume and structure. As a crimped Polytan artificial turf system, LigaGrass Pro CoolPlus is also characterised by a BiColour design. The two-tone fibres help achieve a natural grass appearance with their lush green colour. The integrated CoolPlus function permanently reduces overheating of the turf in direct sunlight and is extremely effective, especially in the case of the textured turf systems, thanks to the large surface area for reflecting heat radiation.

Our LigaGrass Pro CoolPlus is not only suitable for football training and playing facilities, but also for miniature playing fields and multisport facilities, e.g. for lacrosse. This team sport, which is played with a special stick and a hard rubber ball, originates from the east coast of America, where it is practised by indigenous people – the Haudenosaunee – and has a deep religious and identity-forming significance. Lacrosse is the oldest team sport on the American continent, and is by no means seen as only for white people, but as an inclusive, fun activity for women and men alike. Curiously, men and women today play lacrosse by completely different rules: in the women’s game, stick and body contact is limited – similar to field hockey – which is why little protective equipment is needed. In men’s lacrosse, on the other hand, helmets, rib and shoulder protection, and gloves are worn – similar to ice hockey. World championships for men and women now take place every four years, and the first European lacrosse championships took place in 2004. In 2028, Lacrosse is provisionally set to become an Olympic sport again, although the decision is yet to be finalised.

In Bochum, the lacrosse field is located on Havkenscheider Strasse and stands out for its special ball catching nets – purely because it is the only one of its kind in the city. For athletes, the new sports facility also offers a 400-metre synthetic running track and four 100-metre sprinting tracks. It features with our Rekortan M in classic brick red, the fully fledged professional among our sports surfaces. It is representative of high-performance running tracks, not only in training and school sports facilities, but for international competitions as well. The poured in-situ surface is set apart by its excellent acceleration and high tread elasticity. What’s more, it is incredibly fast and offers impressively high shock absorption, as well as excellent advantages in terms of sports medicine.

The city of Bochum spent 1.8 million euros on the renovation. The result is impressive: 1,300 metres of edging stones have been laid, and 2,000 metres of drainage pipes installed. 350 square metres of water-permeable eco-plaster and 5,000 tons of gravel used in the course of the renovation work. All in all, the conversion of the old stadium into the Havkenscheider Park sports facility supports Herbert Grönemeyer’s résumé: “Deep in the west / Where the sun gets dusty / It is better / Much better than you think.”

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