John Wittenborn and his fourteen-year-old Clydesdale-Thoroughbred cross, Soccer, returned home to Long Island and the Smithtown Hunt with the Championship Trophy and ribbon from the Theodora Randolph 2018 Field Hunter Championship in Virginia. Three tries was the charm for Wittenborn and Soccer. Last year the pair made a good showing, placing third.
It was the first team from a northern hunt to have won the coveted prize in thirty-five years of competitions. And it was fitting; Mrs. Randolph was a northerner, though from Boston’s North Shore.
Douglas Lees, the talented photographer who provides Foxhunting Life with so many riveting photographs during the foxhunting and point-to-point seasons, was honored by the American Horse Publications at their 2018 Equine Media Conference held in Hunt Valley, Maryland, June 14-16.
At the awards banquet that concluded the conference, Douglas discovered his photograph, "Rainy Winner," had won the 2018 AHP Award for Best Freelance Editorial Photograph. No stranger to the awards platform, Douglas has been honored in previous years by the AHP for his outstanding photography, and he is also a multi-winner of the prestigious Eclipse Award from the National Thoroughbred Racing Association.
Orange County Kermit 2015, after three consecutive appearances in the Grand Championship Class at the Bryn Mawr Hound Show over the last three years, proved that persistence pays off. The show was held Saturday, June 2, 2018 on the spacious grounds of the Radnor Hunt in Malvern, Pennsylvania, and Judge C. Martin Wood declared Kermit to be the “best example of an American Foxhound that he had ever seen.” And Mr. Wood has seen a few.
Last year, Kermit was beaten in the Grand Championship Class by Midland Striker, after winning the Grand Championship at Virginia just the week before. One year earlier, 2016, Striker had the same experience; he was passed over at Bryn Mawr after winning the Grand Championship at Virginia as well.
The MFHA’s Ian Milne Award is a serious tribute to accomplished huntsmen across North America. It is awarded periodically to a huntsman of sound character who has made outstanding contributions to the sport of foxhunting. Recipients of the Ian Milne Award have learned the hard lessons of the field and the kennels as well as in life, and they have learned to do it right.
This year, that honoree is Donald Philhower, huntsman for the Millbrook Hounds in New York State. Consider the namesake whom the award personifies.
Ian Milne was respected and liked by all. His hunt service began in England and continued until his last breath here in North America. He was a genuine friend and a generous mentor to aspiring and established huntsmen. He was a gentleman, honest as the day is long, and he lived for hounds and hunting.
After winning the Grand National Steeplechase in Butler, Maryland on April 21, 2018, Senior Senator marched to the starting line of the legendary Maryland Hunt Cup at Worthington Farms on the following Saturday, April 28. The eight-year-old bay gelding with the long white blaze must have reminded himself, ‘I won this race two years ago, and I can do it again.’ And he did. Two prestigious wins in two successive weeks. Senator is now two legs up on the three wins necessary to retire the cup for owner Skip Crawford and his wife Vicki, MFHs of the Potomac Hunt (MD).