Cheshire Point-to-Point scheduled for Sunday, March 26
- By Staff Writers
By Richard R.P. (Buzzy) Hannum
UNIONVILLE, Pa.--The Cheshire Point-to-Point, on Sunday, March 26, has had any number of memorable winners, many of whom have gone on to win the Maryland Hunt Cup.
Among those, two of the most memorable are trainer Betty Bird and Buzzy Hannum, who rode for her and who wrote this in memory of Betty who is being honored at this year's meet.
That combination won the featured Cheshire Bowl a number of times.
Elizabeth Cromwell Bosley Bird was a uniquely talented person.
She told me that her formal education ended at 6th grade.
However, she was able to relate on their own level to people ranging on the social scale from the guy handling a pitchfork in her barn to the Queen of England.
Everyone, especially me, loved her.
Her talents ranged from being the best person with animals that I ever saw, to a professional fashion model, to an Olympic show ring rider, to a uniquely talented steeplechase horse trainer.
As a result of the kindness of my close friend, Paddy Neilson, I was the beneficiary of the latter talent.
She told me that her horses were well schooled.
If I wanted to ride for her, I needed to leave them alone as they approached a fence, otherwise I could ride for someone else.
I wanted to ride for her.
There was no question that they were really well schooled.
She had done most of it herself.
Following her instructions led to the opportunity to ride extremely talented horses and we had considerable success.
However, the most important thing was the opportunity to spend time with her.
She had a charm that would allow her to escape the misdeeds with which she was frequently faced.
For example, when returning from the Middleburg races she was stopped by a Washington police officer on Rt 95 for speeding.
She told him an unbelievable story about her sick mother in the hospital.
The police officer took pity on her and allowed her to go with a warning, telling her to be safe and comply with the speed limit.
She allowed the police officer to get back in his car and leave.
Then she pressed the gas pedal to the metal and proceeded on her way north at a rate well in excess of the speed limit.
Unfortunately, the same police officer was waiting for her 10 miles down the road. He again stopped her.
I said, “Let’s see you get out of this.”
Next thing I knew we were again proceeding north with another warning.
I said “What did you say.”
She said “Cops are so easy.”