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Richard Normington to Carry the Horn for Radnor


richard normington.jim grahamJim Graham photoThe Radnor Hunt (PA) is pleased to announce the appointment of Richard Normington as professional huntsman. Richard brings an impressive level of expertise and horsemanship that bodes well for Radnor’s ability to show good sport for seasons to come.

Before coming to the U.S., Richard was first whipper-in at the Grafton Hunt (Northamptonshire), the Worcestershire, the Crawley and Horsham (Sussex), and the Cheshire Hunt. He is third generation hunt staff, and a crack horseman, with experience in point-to-points and other cross-country competitions.

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Neil Morris Is MFH at Orange County

neilmorris.portrait.leesNeil Morris hunting a stakes-winning hurdle horse at Orange County / Douglas Lees photoNeil Morris is a new Master of the Orange County Hounds (VA). Morris joins current Masters John Coles and Malcolm Matheson in leading this, one of the most prominent hunts in the country.

“I’m so happy to have him,” said Coles. “Neil can do anything in this job that anyone could want. He’s a great guy, a great horseman...he’s made to order ”

Better known perhaps for his association with winning race horses he has trained for Kinross Farm, such as Grade I Stakes winner Sur La Tete; Virginia Gold Cup winner Miles Ahead; and Virginia-bred Researcher with winnings in the seven figures, Morris is at the same time an avid foxhunter. He hunts his steeplechase horses regularly and credits that time off in the field with providing the bottomless stamina his horses so often display on the race course.

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The Hardaway-Morgan-Bell Connection

Captain Tom Morgan presents the South Tyrone Foxhounds Hon Whip Paul Kinane and huntsman Ryan Carvill for Beauty winner of the Isaac Bell TrophyCaptain Tom Morgan (seated) presents the Isaac Bell Perpetual Challenge Cup to South Tyrone Foxhounds Honorary Whipper-In Paul Kinane and huntsman Ryan Carvill for Beauty, winning un-entered female hound, at the National Irish Masters of Foxhounds Show. / Noel Mullins photo

The above photograph caught my eye because of the man in the wheelchair, Captain Tom Morgan. The photo is one of several sent by photo/journalist and author Noel Mullins, a regular contributor to Foxhunting Life, reporting on the National Irish Masters of Foxhound Show held on Sunday, July 6, 2014.

Captain Morgan, now in his mid-nineties, is one of the few people still alive who intimately knew and worked closely in his hound breeding program with the late Isaac “Ikey” Bell, father of the modern English foxhound. The only other living individual I know who knew and benefitted from his relationship with Ikey Bell is Ben Hardaway, also in his mid-nineties.

If it weren’t for Ikey Bell and Tom Morgan, Ben Hardaway would not have his Hardaway Crossbred as we know it today. And if it weren’t for Bell, we wouldn’t have the modern English foxhound as we know it today.

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A Miracle of Love and Hope...And a Horse Named Logan

scout.joy smithScout and LoganOur dear friend Scout (Vicki) Valentine can breathe thanks to a miracle. The miracle that skilled surgeons, with God’s help, can take the working, useful lungs from a person who has left this life and place them in a person whose work on this earth is not done. The further miracle that the timing of the donor’s passing coincided with the hour of Scout’s greatest need.

Scout received her new lungs in the very early hours of June 8, 2013. The journey to that day began nearly two years earlier when Scout developed a nasty cough. It was diagnosed as pneumonia and treated as such. It seemingly was on its way to resolution until several months later when it became apparent there were some lingering symptoms.

Over the next several months diagnostic tests were run and Scout fluctuated between feeling normal and feeling just a bit off. The “off” didn’t stop her from being active. She continued to run several days a week and take riding lessons which she had begun in 2010. She had made her debut in the hunt field in early 2011 at a Red Rock Hounds joint meet in Santa Ynez and had become quite hooked on riding.

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