Pulling out of the Idaho Falls parking lot of Arnold Machinery Company, Volvo Construction Equipment's largest western US dealer, and heading east on the interstate, it was obvious that this is rowcrop country. There were lots of tractors but not a single Volvo excavator in sight.

Meeting the Great White Shark

Farm homes, acre upon acre of lush potato foliage, large irrigation apparatus, empty potato silos, and a few horses grazing by the roadside, dot the prairie-like countryside. After all this is Idaho, the Potato State. But as the miles rolled by, on this excursion to find some very special Volvo excavators and to meet the Great White Shark in Tetonia, the landscape began to change. The farm homes dwindled in number and the fields of potatoes gave way to vast fields of grain and dry grass hills dotted with cattle. Then, cresting another hill, like a mirage, they rose majestically on the horizon, the grand Cathedral Range of the Teton Mountains. Stopping to drink in the view, it became very evident why PC Development and West Rim, LLC had partnered and picked this location for the development of River Rim Ranch and the 18-hole championship Teton Rim Golf Course. But choosing this magnificent location was just one of the smart decisions that Michael Potter, Tom Clinton and Roger and Brent Hoopes, the principles of this partnership, had made. Additionally, they had chosen the world championship golf course design expertise of Greg Norman, the Great White Shark, and then put their partner, David Owen, one of the most respected contractors in this part of the country, in charge. David then turned to the Silver Service of Arnold Machinery Company to supply world class Volvo excavators, articulated haul trucks, wheel loaders and motor graders to make sure this gigantic construction project got completed on time and on budget.

Not A Normal Work Day

As the morning sun began to rise, it glinted off the booms and cabs of five brand new Volvo excavators poised quietly in an open field. But this would not be a normal work day for these five. The sixteen ton Volvo EC160C, the twenty one ton Volvo EC210C, and the three, thirty-six ton Volvo EC360B's, were going to play a key role in the ground breaking ceremony for the exciting new Teton Rim Golf Course. So before anyone could call 'fore' on this scenic course, these 'five' stars from Volvo Construction Equipment would have to do their job.

Growing a Partnership

David Owen, president of Owen-PC Construction, LLC, started his career in 1979 and over the years, through a combination of hard work and acquisition, has built the company in both size and reputation.

During that time, his relationship with Arnold Machinery has grown as well. When asked about this partnership, David was quick to respond, "Albert Gariza and his team at Arnold services the heck out of us, and that's good. Our relationship is forty-five minutes from the time we call them until they are on site, and they have never let us down." The Greg Norman designed golf course, expected to be fully completed and playable in 2010, along with the River Rim Ranch development, will keep Owen-PC busy for years to come. David noted "that this year alone we will move over 1.6 million yards of dirt right here at River Rim."

Volvo Has Been Leading The Pack

Asked about the fuel efficiency of his Volvo equipment, including the all important excavator fleet, David had high praise for Volvo. "Volvo has been leading the pack in fuel efficiency for quite some time. That's important to us. Especially when you are burning up to 3000 gallons of fuel a day. For us, it's commitment, service, fuel efficiency and parts availability, and both Volvo and Arnold excel in all categories." This praise of the Volvo equipment is echoed by Larry Roberts, Ken Hellwinkle and Jim Jones, three of Owen-PC's senior operators. All agreed when Larry spoke highly about the power of the Volvo excavators, "There's some pretty severe conditions out here. A lot of rock and many different kinds of soil and these machines have great break-out force, they're fast and comfortable."

It's All About The Right Choices

Michael Potter, the visionary behind the River Rim Ranch project, had high praise for both course designer Greg Norman and his partner David Owen. "When you start a project like this, you need predictability and we have that with both Greg and David. This is going to be a stunning course. With Greg's signature Shark Tee's, this course will be pushed out to more than eight thousand yards. And on the construction side, we are fortunate to have David in charge. It gives us peace of mind knowing that we can get the job done on time and on budget, and a major part of that equation is David and the [Volvo] equipment his team is using." Meanwhile, David had made his way to the five Volvo excavators that were waiting patiently right where the first tee will be built. There, he is giving Greg, Mike, Tom, Brent and Roger a lesson in the operation of the new Volvo excavators. Today, these five will spend a few minutes learning the basics and then start to dig, in what was going to turn out to be a spectacular ground breaking. "My biggest concern is that these five 'rookies' will bump into each other," smiled David, "but the Volvo cabs are so comfortable and the machines so easy to operate that I don't think that will happen." And it didn't. In true Volvo Construction Equipment fashion, the ground breaking went off without a hitch or a bang. The five 'rookies' had done their job and the five Volvo excavators had performed as they should. Did someone call fore?

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