Monthly Archives: December 2010

Winter Fox Hunting

We have had unusually cold weather for December here in Virginia and conditions have not been great for foxhunting. Some meets have still been held, however, and here are a few shots from Bull Run Hunt and Old Dominion Hounds. For more foxhunting photos please visit Susan M. Carter Photography.

It snowed about 10 days before Christmas and most clubs canceled but Bull Run Hunt did not. As they said on the hunt monitor, they were going, “rain, sleet, snow or shine.”

Bull Run takes out more hounds than some of the other clubs.

They also take a sensible approach and dress informally in bad weather.

The meet left from their kennels and not all the hounds were happy to be left behind.

Old Dominion went out a few days later after some of the snow had melted but it was still very cold and the ground was slippery.

The hounds flushed a fox within the first five minutes but quickly lost the scent in the windy conditions.

It’s not just hounds that don’t want to be left out of the fun – this horse jumped out of his pasture and ran after the hunt. The miscreant was captured and returned home.

The ground proved too slippery and when one of the horses fell, they gave up and called it a day.


Posted in Foxhunting

Virginia Point to Point Champions 2010

I photograph lots of Virginia’s point-to-point meets (and we have many) and want to congratulate the Virginia Point-to-Point Assocation champions for 2010.

Timber horse of the year was Endless Mountain, seen here with Ben Garner.

_DSC3854_blog Hurdle horse of the year was Fantastic Foe, here winning at Old Dominion with Liam McVicar
The owner rider series was won by Crypto Cousin and Pat Cooney. He didn’t win this race at Piedmont but was making sure he didn’t touch these stone walls!
Crypto Cousin, Pat Cooney
The amateur/novice rider hurdle series was won by Meshwaar with Sam Cockburn.
Natalie Wales won the lady rider timber series.


The foxhunter timber series was won by Shesacraftydame and Bryan McDonald.

Jeff Murphy was the leading rider over fences,


Sam Cockburn was the leading novice rider over fences,


and Ben Garner was the leading novice rider on the flat


I was going to use these pictures that I took of Jeff and Ben but decided they might prefer something different. 🙂

The Virginia Bred flat series was won in commanding style by Over the Lea


I’ll see everyone at Casanova in February for the start of the 2011 point-to-point season, assuming we’re not snowed under again!

Posted in Horse Racing, Steeplechase

Steeplechase Champions 2010

Congratulations to all the 2010 National Steeplechase Association champions. I’ve had the privilege to photograph a fair number of the winners but not nearly as many as I would have expected considering that Virginia hosts far more sanctioned steeplechase meets than any other state, fourteen in 2010. But here are some photos of those that I was lucky enough to shoot.

Slip Away won the National Steeplechase championship this year, earning $191,500. Sadly he only raced once in Virginia this year at one of only two sanctioned meets I did not photograph. Here he is last year winning the Noel Laing hurdle stakes race at Montpelier.
Bubble Economy was the champion timber horse, shown here winning the Virginia Gold Cup with Paddy Young.

Ptarmigan was the filly and mare’s champion, seen here winning at Foxfield with Jeff Murphy.

The leading jockey in terms of both number of races and money won, was Paddy Young. Here he is at Morven Park.

And riding Love Colony.

Darren Nagle was the amateur jockey champion with ten wins. Here he is on Dubai Sunday at Colonial Downs.

And also on Coupe de Ville.

RAC: JUN 27 COLONIAL TURF CUP STAKES  Roddy Mackenzie was the leading apprentice jockey for the year. Winning at Colonial Downs.

And riding at Morven Park

Irv Naylor was this year’s leading owner. Here he accepts the cup for Decoy Daddy’s win in the Noel Laing Memorial Stakes race this year at Montpelier.

The winning trainer was Jonathan Sheppard, who is in the Racing Hall of Fame and this year reached his 1,000th career victory over fences. Here he is at Colonial Downs following Barnstorming’s win.

Again, congratulations!

Posted in Horse Racing, Steeplechase