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Race horse breeder relies on ATVs

Versatile Yamaha ATVs essential to equestrian farm maintenance

Sandie Newton is a passionate horse breeder who relies heavily on two Yamaha Grizzly ATVs to manage 100 acres of land in Cornwall with her husband David. The land owned is part of the family’s farm which historically reared cattle, sheep and grew arable crops, but is now mainly in pasture.

Sandie breeds racehorses for pleasure and is fortunate to have horses with leading trainers Harry Fry and Andrew Balding. She also keeps two dressage horses that are bred specifically for her own riding and enjoyment.

“I always wanted to work with, and ride, horses. My grandfather bought me my first pony and I competed at a young age in show jumping before moving into dressage. I won the retraining of racehorses national dressage championship, and have continued to breed and ride horses throughout my life,” she explains.

Managing the land is no small task and to keep costs down she has invested in machinery to streamline daily tasks like feeding, bedding, mucking out, paddock cleaning and grassland management. Her Yamaha ATVs are used in almost every aspect of the management from mending fencing to feeding. With the addition of some innovative implements she saves significant time and money by using ATVs for an ever-growing number of tasks

“I can carry three small hay bales on the ATV, and with the trailer I can take a further 9 or 10 to make it round all of the horses each day. The trailer is also useful for cleaning out field shelters and, even when fully laden, the Grizzly can manage the weight and tow it back to our dung heap.”

Feeding is also carried out using the Grizzly which, with its trailer, can carry 8 different feed buckets with a variety of rations formulated for the age and size of horse.

Land management and the constant upkeep has been made easier with investments in implements such as a Martin Lishman sprayer.

“It has a 70-litre capacity which the Grizzly handles with ease. The ATV is easy to manoeuvre, even with a full payload, and is perfect for getting into smaller paddocks and areas around hedgerows that would be difficult to reach with larger machines,” she says.

The chunky design of the Grizzly means the sprayer fits neatly on the rear rack and when folded it does not protrude, making it easy to move through small gates and tight spaces confidently.

Paddock maintenance is a daily task that Sandie utilises a Trafalgar paddock cleaner for.

“The cleaner when fully laden is a significant weight which is why I chose the Grizzly. It has the highest weight carrying capacity of any ATV. It can carry 50 kilos on the front rack, 90 kilos on the rear and still tow 600 kilos comfortably. This reduces the time and fuel needed to move around the paddocks, and with the 700cc engine I always feel like I have plenty of power, even going up steep inclines.”

Rather than level the manège by hand, Sandie has invested in a Logic manège leveller.

“I can’t use a bigger vehicle like a pickup or tractor because it doesn’t have the turning circle to cover the space in the manège. The leveller on the back of the Grizzly means I can cover 90% of the manège with only the corners left to do by hand. It is a huge time saver, but also leaves a better and more even finish.”

She has been using ATVs for over 15 years and every generation has been a Yamaha. The automatic CVT transmission along with the reliability and dealer service have combined together to make the Grizzly her go-to ATV.

“I wouldn’t be without an automatic transmission. It really helps on the uneven and steep ground we have here. It enables me and the other operators to focus on the task rather than wrestle with gears to get the most out of the engine. It is particularly good coming downhill and never runs away, the engine braking always gives me confidence.”

Each ATV is kept for around three years and benefits from a two-year warranty. The relatively light use the Grizzly’s endure provides a good residual value and enables Sandie to benefit from upgrades that newer models offer.

“My dealer is always keen to make me aware of special Grizzly’s that come into stock with extras like heated grips or special colours. They know I like the Grizzly and have sold me some brilliant ATVs over the years. I wouldn’t be without the ATVs, they are like my Swiss army knife of machinery, and I always look forward to my next,” she concludes.