Fox Hunting Life with Horse and Hound

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IMG 0296 MFHAAdmiring Canadian Grand Champion Wentworth are (l-r) TNY Huntsman Roslynn Balding; Judge C. Martin Wood III, MFH, Live Oak Hounds; Apprentice Judge Mary Ewing, MFH, Arapahoe Hunt; Carl Feairs, MFH, TNY; Laurel Byrne, MFH, TNY; Judge Ian Farquhar, MFH, Duke of Beaufort's; Mike Byrne, President, TNY; and Teresa Robinson. /  Denya Massey photo

Two world-class judges of foxhounds turned a good day, June 17, 2017 at the Canadian Foxhound Show, into an exceptional and informative day for spectators. MFHs Captain Ian Farquhar and C. Martin Wood III shared their insights as to the choices they made after the results of classes were announced. The experience was an invaluable master class for both those showing hounds and those watching. Each man has judged every major hound show in the foxhunting world, including Peterborough, and each is esteemed among the very best in the breeding of foxhounds.

Grand Champion Foxhound of Show was Toronto and North York’s Blue Ridge Wentworth 2015, an English dog hound. Judge Farquhar especially demonstrated consistency in his choice, since he chose Wentworth as Grand Champion of the Bryn Mawr Hound Show last year!

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Hounds

IMG 0296 MFHAAdmiring Canadian Grand Champion Wentworth are (l-r) TNY Huntsman Roslynn Balding; Judge C. Martin Wood III, MFH, Live Oak Hounds; Apprentice Judge Mary Ewing, MFH, Arapahoe Hunt; Carl Feairs, MFH, TNY; Laurel Byrne, MFH, TNY; Judge Ian Farquhar, MFH, Duke of Beaufort's; Mike Byrne, President, TNY; and Teresa Robinson. /  Denya Massey photo

Two world-class judges of foxhounds turned a good day, June 17, 2017 at the Canadian Foxhound Show, into an exceptional and informative day for spectators. MFHs Captain Ian Farquhar and C. Martin Wood III shared their insights as to the choices they made after the results of classes were announced. The experience was an invaluable master class for both those showing hounds and those watching. Each man has judged every major hound show in the foxhunting world, including Peterborough, and each is esteemed among the very best in the breeding of foxhounds.

Grand Champion Foxhound of Show was Toronto and North York’s Blue Ridge Wentworth 2015, an English dog hound. Judge Farquhar especially demonstrated consistency in his choice, since he chose Wentworth as Grand Champion of the Bryn Mawr Hound Show last year!

tny blue ridge wentworth.canadian17.masseyToronto and North York's Blue Ridge Wentworth 2015 is Grand Champion Foxhound at the 2017 Canadian Foxhound Show. /   Denya Massey photo

Wentworth was entered in 2015 by the Blue Ridge Hunt (VA) and shown in 2016 by Blue Ridge huntsman Graham Buston. Though successful in the show ring, Buston was looking for more drive in the hunting field and thought the hound might do better in Ontario. Wentworth was drafted to Toronto and North York and huntsman Rosslyn Balding took possession in time for their spring season early this year.

“The hunting is different in the Toronto and North York country than it is in Virginia,” said Balding. “It’s mostly all coyote, and we have very few of the tight, discrete coverts as in Virginia. When we restart the season in the spring there’s no foliage, so the visibility is good.”

“This spring the hunting was terrific,” she continued. “We were finding coyotes on the first draw every time out. Hounds had no opportunity to do anything but hunt. Right from the start! At the beginning I could see that Wentworth was getting thrown out about halfway through, but with conditions as they were, by the end of the season Wentworth was there at the finish with the rest of them. Now, I fully expect him to be there. I think he was just a slow starter.”

Balding plans to breed to Wentworth and has a couple of bi*ches in mind for him. One has similar bloodlines, and she hopes to double up on those good lines. Like so many breeders, Balding will select hard-driving bi*ches for the hunting side of the equation and use Wentworth to improve the conformation of the litter.

Wentworth goes back in tail male to Duke of Beaufort’s Bailey 2003, arguably the most influential hound in England in the last fifteen years, according to C. Martin Scott, MFH, Vale of the White Horse (UK), another leading judge and hound breeder. Bailey was a champion at Peterborough as was his dam, Duke of Beaufort’s Patience 1998. Bailey is also the grandsire of recent Canadian Hound Show Grand Champions, Toronto and North York Cleopatra 2012 and Clarence 2012 through their sire, Blue Ridge Barnfield 2010.

With those bloodlines, a couple of year’s of hunting under his belt, and after watching him hunt during the spring season, Balding believes that Wentworth has slowly come into his own. “I love him!” she says.

The sixty-third annual Canadian Foxhound Club Show was held on a lovely summer day—a light breeze, slightly overcast, and not too hot. Thunderstorms were predicted, indeed the indoor luncheon was timed perfectly as a huge storm rolled through, but the day was positively gorgeous when compared to the great heat wave the show endured last year.

Hosted by the Toronto and North York Hunt (ON) at their kennels in Creemore, the TNYH team was ably organized by Janet Feairs, who pulled together her previous team mates, Jill Gibson, Gill von Teichman, and Arlene Taylor to make the day run smoothly.

In perfect timing with the incoming thunderstorm, spectators, members, judges and hunt staff enjoyed a lovely lunch in the clubhouse, provided by Gourmandissimo. When the thunderstorm was still threatening lightning, the terrier classes were held indoors. Judged by Mary Ewing, MFH, Arapahoe Hunt (CO), Apprentice Judge of the day, and Pammie Jane Farquhar, the terriers did their final trot up outside, as the weather began to clear and the afternoon classes started.

The afternoon culminated with the Pack Class held at the Clubhouse, and was won by the Toronto and North York Hunt. Afternoon tea was served after the Show. Judge Wood, MFH of the Live Oak Hounds (FL) and recent inductee into the Huntsmen’s Room at the Museum of Hounds and Hunting, and Judge Farquhar, MFH of the Duke of Beaufort’s (UK) were generous in their comments and wit.

Foxhound shows are important for shaping future generations of hounds, because good conformation is critical in giving a foxhound the physical ability to do what they are bred to do. The judges acknowledged that the cheerful and confident attitude of a hound will certainly impress them, because that translates to a hound who loves its job and its life.

Posted July 5, 2017

 

 

 

 

 

ceremonies2.croppedArapahoe Joint-Master Mary Ewing introduces Marvin Beeman. /  Douglas Lees photo

A countryman from Virginia, a veterinarian from Colorado, and a businessman from north Florida were honored by an appreciative crowd of well-wishers on the occasion of their induction into the Huntsmen’s Room of the Museum of Hounds and Hunting. Ceremonies were conducted at Morven Park, Leesburg, Virginia on Saturday, May 27, 2017. This was the evening before the Virginia Foxhound Show over the Memorial Day Weekend.

James Lee Atkins, Dr. G. Marvin Beeman, MFH, and C. Martin Wood III, MFH were selected by a committee of their peers for having carried the hunting horn with honor, courage, and distinction in hunting fields across North America in their lifetimes. The three men join a select club of just forty-one pre-eminent huntsmen so honored. The last inductions were made two years ago.

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spencer allen crop smallHuntsman Spencer Allen / Douglas Lees photo

Huntsman Spencer Allen has gone through a rocky time in the past couple of years. He’s been forced to consider other options for his future, but he knows in his heart what he loves the most—working with and hunting foxhounds. And this is why he’s so happy to be in Monticello, Florida at Marty and Daphne Wood’s unparalleled establishment as huntsman for the Live Oak Hounds.

After serving six years in the Marine Corps, including a tour in Iraq, Allen began as an amateur whipper-in at the Bull Run Hunt (VA). Two seasons later he turned professional and moved to the Piedmont Fox Hounds (VA), serving four seasons as first whipper-in to huntsman Richard Roberts. Allen found himself working with a talented and attractive whipper-in, Rachel Gray, who also happened to be the daughter of the previous huntsman, Butch Gray. Spencer and Rachel were married, and in 2010 Spencer was named huntsman at Piedmont. He hunted the Piedmont hounds for five seasons, showing excellent sport, but trouble followed.

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marty woodkleckcropC. Martin Wood, III, MFH / Nancy Kleck photoFoxhounds weren’t the only newsmakers at the Virginia Foxhound Show. A few people were worth noting as well!

Huntsmen’s Room
Three individuals were introduced for induction into the Huntsmen’s Room of the Museum of Hounds and Hunting in ceremonies on Saturday evening. Before dinner under the tent, Jake Carle, ex-MFH, spoke eloquently, reverently, and at the right times humorously about the three men who have hunted hounds with distinction for many years: C. Martin Wood, III, MFH, Live Oak Hounds (FL), G. Marvin Beeman, MFH, Arapaho Hunt (CO), and the late Jim Atkins who hunted hounds for the Piedmont Fox Hounds, Old Dominion Hounds, and the Warrenton Hunt, all in Virginia.

marvin beeman  jim atkins2
G. Marvin Beeman, MFH                    Huntsman Jim Atkins

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