Raquel shows off her winning antlers at NRA's Great American Show.
- There were plenty of winners in NRA/Mason Dixon Big Buck Contest at Frederick Fair Grounds this January. Best in Show Sheds, Junior and more. But what caught my attention was the Female Best in Show. That was none other then Raquel Harrington of Maryland.
"It was my first hunt. Not of the season but of my life," Raquel said with a smile. "Yea, I'm a little bit spoiled."
An avid pistol target shooters, Raquel finally plunged into the hunting pond after some prodding by her Father and Uncle. In fact, it was her Uncle who served as wingman during this 2011 excursion on the family's Montgomery County Farm. Nothing like putting your money where your mouth is.
"It's kind of a funny story," Raquel explained. "It all started with a nap."
Spending most of the day stalking, Raquel and her Uncle decided it was time for a break. Finding a comfortable stack of hay, the two took a snooze. When they awoke — there was the buck.
Heading for the buck's starting point atop a nearby hill, the two tracked their quarry for about half a mile. The deer, however, was being shifty. Losing the two here and there, it appeared they would end the day without taking a shot. Then came the doe.
"Had it not been rut then I never would have gotten him. He followed some doe right into a clearing and I dropped all 172 pounds of him with my new muzzleloader."
Hearing about the NRA's Annual Great American Hunting & Outdoor Show, Raquel's family encouraged her to enter the rack in this year's competition. That meant a trip to the taxidermist for an unfinished mount, but a winning rack is a winning rack is a winning rack. It doesn't have to be pretty, it just has to be good. And Raquel's entry was more than good … it was Best in Show.