By Norman Fine
Huntsman Graham Buston brings the Blue Ridge hounds to the first draw, where a fox was quickly unkenneled for a field of juniors participating in one of 31 qualifying meets for the 2016 Junior North American Field Hunter Championships. / Michelle Arnold photo
Every junior who qualifies by competing at any one of thirty-one Qualifying Meets offered across fourteen states and provinces will be eligible to compete in the Junior North American Field Hunter Championship Finals this year. The meets are in full swing.
The Blue Ridge Hunt hosted a qualifying meet on Saturday, September 24, 2016 at the McIntosh farm situated just above the Shenandoah River under western brow of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Anne McIntosh, MFH led the field of hopefuls, judges, and hunt members, the latter riding behind the junior competitors for a change.
Hunting was excellent, with foxes getting away right at the start and giving the judges plenty of opportunities to watch and judge the young riders and their mounts in action. And everyone viewed the quarry at least once!