In England and Ireland, it’s de rigueur for eventing horses of all levels to spend their winter season in the foxhunting field, but in the U.S., not so much. In this country, the hunt field is not necessarily where young eventing enthusiasts start their passion for galloping at hedges and coops, or where young horses find their balance and footing across varied terrain.
We reap the benefits when we import sensible Irish horses that have already been out for two seasons at the age of five, but it is certainly less common than it used to be to find crossover between the two disciplines.
Leo, I decided, was going to take the old-fashioned route to finding his cross country talents; we were going to foxhunt. He had come an incredibly long way in the eighteen months that I owned him, in both cross country acumen and fitness for the activities required in eventing, but there was still something missing.