TIMBERSPORTS® athletes are famous for chopping wood in record time. You need first-class competition wood for a first-class performance. Quality plays a key role in our extreme sports series, as well as sustainability in production and recycling.
Poplar wood from Belgium and the Netherlands is primarily used in international TIMBERSPORTS® competitions. The fast-growing trees come from FSC-certified plantations and are planted, cared for and felled under sustainable conditions. This means, for example, that it is important that lighter equipment is used for tree felling. The plantations can also be used again as fertile arable land in the years following. This means that existing forests are not damaged and usable areas are protected. “We are proud that all our wood is sustainably grown and used,” says Spike Milton, Global Sports Director of STIHL TIMBERSPORTS®. He is one of the decision makers who determine which areas are suitable and which trees can be used as competition timber.
Not only sustainability, but wood quality is a top priority for us. The trees are carefully examined by Spike Milton and Bart Jansen before felling. As our Wood Manager, Bart Jansen is responsible for quality control. Before the chips fly at TIMBERSPORTS®, the wood is prepared and assigned according to standardised rules in order to guarantee equivalent wooden blocks and therefore fair competition conditions within a contest. “The condition of each individual tree is examined before further processing. In other words: How hard is the wood and does it have branches? This is how we ensure a fair competition,” explains Jansen.
The wood is still utilised and recycled after being chopped into smaller pieces. Spike Milton believes it is imperative that the leftover wood is not wasted: “Recyclable materials are generated even during the preparation of the wooden blocks, which we then add to processing procedures for humus, for example. After all TIMBERSPORTS® competitions, all the spend wood is collected and recycled right down to the wood chips and saw dust, which for example is converted into renewable energy in the form of wood pellets for biomass, for example from local suppliers.” Another example: After the 2019 World Championship in Prague, the more than two-metre-long Springboard tree trunks were donated to the socially active 'Friends of Budanka' association, which used them to create a listed settlement near Prague.