Monday, November 23, 2009

Aiken Junior Polo Final

The rain held off on Saturday and it made for an awesome day for junior polo at Powderhouse field. The day started with the little ones, also known as the leadline division, making their way to the field with the help of their parents. Announcer, Charlie Herrick, made it even more amusing with his commentating like it was a high intensity 20 goal game. These kids, ranging in ages from 2 to 5 years old, were all smiles as they played a little friendly polo. Abby Capps, Bailey Capps, Danny McCarthy, Santiago Gonzalez, Lucas Gonzalez, Ash Guttierez and Jersey Cogan have some well known parents around town, but moms and dads were more than happy to take time out of their day to spend some quality time with the kids. All the leadline ponies were awarded Best Playing Pony and received a nice big package of carrots for keeping it nice and easy with the tots. It was great to see the parents involved and the kids playing nice.

After the little ones finished up their game, the older ones made their way to the field. I found that these chukkers were even more entertaining at times than high goal polo. You could see the smiles on their faces and sense of camaraderie between opposing teams. The winner of the round robin game was Silverstone Farm. This stellar team was comprised of Kegan Walsh, Jason Wates, Ashley Ragucci, & Malia Bryan. The winning team was given an extra boost by Jason Wates' Best Playing Pony, "Ya Mon" and MVP, Kegan Walsh.

Tess Pimsner assisted in giving mom and spectators a little nervous rush when she fell off her pony Rita. Tess received the "Real Estate" Award for her fall since she was the only player to really get a good look at the homestead. Pony and player were fine and when asked later Tess said, "Most people thought I wouldn't finish the chukker with Rita, but I wanted to." Although she is a very persistent player, her and her team couldn't pull out the win for C-Spear. Tess, along with Maggie Boyle, Louis Biarritzi, & Taylor Freeman made up the team for C-Spear who put up a valiant effort.

They say nice guys always finish last, but that wasn't such a bad thing for Sam Leguizamon who received the "Sportsmanship" Award for always being the guy to help someone out. Anytime a younger player was having trouble or needing assistance, he was always there to help guide and teach them. Although El Aguila Farms team, comprised of Sam and his sister, Sabrina Leguizamon along with Wesley Bryan and Matt McGhee finished last, it was made known that it's not about winning...good sportsmanship is key to great polo.

Aiken Junior Polo isn't just for polo families. It's open to anyone! If you would like more information on the program, please contact Karen Reese at

Thursday, November 19, 2009

The Birds Are Heading South For Winter...And So Is Polo!

We were a bit disappointed the last Sunday game of the fall season couldn't be played at Whitney Field [due to field conditions] however Powderhouse Field was a more than acceptable substitute. The CMP girls set up shop on the sunny side of the field to watch Polo Cops/C-Spear and Aiken Horse battle it out. The Aiken Horse team of Gary Knoll, Pam Gleason, Luis Galvan, and Nigel Allcock together had a 3-goal team and therefore started off the game with one point due to the handicap difference with the Polo Cops/C-Spear team of Kathy Roberts, JD Cooper, Jason Wates, and Geoff Cameron.

During the first chukker, Nigel Allcock received two technical fouls and was forced to leave the field for the remaining 63 seconds of that chukker due to "choice words to the umpire" as APC manager, Craig Fraser so eloquently put it. If a third technical foul would have been received by Allcock, he would have been ejected from the rest of the entire game. As irony would have it, he took a spill in the 4th chukker and was unable to finish the game anyway due to a knee injury. Taylor Freeman stepped in to finish up the game, but could not help turn Aiken Horse's luck around as Polo Cops/C-Spear defeated them 9-5.

The CMP prizes for the last fall Sunday game were all about taking care of some of Sunday polo's largest supporters. Every Sunday at Whitney Field, the Groat and Schaumann families are always in attendance at their parking spot usually with extra friends as well. They are social members of Aiken Polo Club and after hearing they brought baked brie, we knew they were a shoe in for the Best Tailgate Spot that day! Christian Schaumann, who works at the Aiken Brewing Company, said he was looking forward to using the Prime gift certificate to check out the competition...and take the wife Molly out for a lovely meal of course!

During the halftime divot stomping, we spotted a woman with a straw hat and a light green sweater tossed around her shoulders. It was a perfect outfit to suit the sunny weather yet still a fully functional fall get-up. Little did we know, she was also apart of the Groat/Schmaumann camp! Jeannie Groat was awarded Best Dressed and a 25% off gift certificate to Equine Divine!

Our Polo Pooch of the Day belongs to some of the most important people involved at Aiken Polo Club...the people who keep the polo fields in shape, Debbie and Pat! We have watched their golden retriever, Zack, grow up over 3 polo seasons now. We figured it was time he got to partake in those Bone-i-Fide Bakery goodies. [Speaking of Bone-i-Fide Bakery, we hear they are under new ownership. Be sure to tune in next week to the CMP blog for a full report! Most of the polo might be heading south, but we still have some tricks up our sleeve for winter here!]

We would like to say thank you on behalf of the Aiken Polo Club to all of the club members, loyal spectators, sponsors, players, teams, game help, grooms and catering for their hard work and support. Another great polo season must come to a close, but the spring season kicks off in April [just about the time when the Florida weather starts to get too hot!]

The CMP gals will be sticking around Aiken for the winter and plan to keep blogging ever so often, so please drop us an email at if you wish to be notified when a new blog is posted over the winter!

Until mid-April, Marco...


Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Burnt Mill Gets Burned by Duck Hill Farm 8-7 in Fall Invitational Finals

The sun was shining bright to let us know that there would be no rained out game this week! After two weeks of no Sunday polo due to rain & wet fields, the spectators were in good spirits and happy to return to the regular Sunday routine. Whitney Field Sunday regular, Jan who moved to Aiken from up north was heard saying "This is the in November!" as she lounged on the sidelines sans shoes. We couldn't agree more! It was also perfect weather for the Fall Classic Invitational finals between Burnt Mill and Duck Hill Farm.

Although the fields weren't wet, we still managed to have a couple players come unseated from their horses throughout the game. Bill Paterneti was the first player to start the trend shortly into the first chukker with Marcos Onetto following suit in the second chukker. Horses were okay and both players played the entire game, so no serious injuries that we're aware of. After those spills, the fans certainly had their work cut out for them during halftime divot stomping.

Although Kris Powers has been a previous winner of one of our weekly prizes [Best Dressed a few weeks ago] we couldn't deny that her tailgate spot was the best this past Sunday. They were celebrating Kris' birthday with a "princess party" if you will. The ladies were sporting tiaras on their heads and letting the wine flow freely! When getting photographed, Kris said "Everyone take off your tiaras but me!" as she wanted to make sure everyone knew who the Birthday Girl was! We hope she enjoys the gift certificate to Prime Steakhouse as her prize for winning Best Tailgate Spot.

As for our Polo Pooch of the Day, we choose Flora, an Irish terrier from Lydia Bibeau's puppy party. We hope the other dogs in the group, Coco Plum and Spartacus weren't too jealous! Flora was a rescue from Chicago and is considered the "red devil of the household" per Lydia after losing 8 pairs of Italian shoes and 2 handbags to Flora's chompers. Flora is owned by Peter Bibeau of Buckley Farms and was wrangled by Lydia. We choose Flora for her spunky personality and enthusiasm. Treats & toy provided by the CMP Gals to the winning dog.

At the end of the day, it was Duck Hill Farm defeating Burnt Mill 8-7 after a very close game. The game MVP award went to Federico Wulff and Best Playing Pony was presented to John Gobin's Coronita. Lindsey and honorary CMP gal Amanda Hersey [filling in for Jessica, who snuck off to Florida for a few days] were spotted presenting the trophies to the winners and finalists of the Fall Classic Invitational.

The final fall tournament for APC is a 4 goal tournament that is taking place this week, assuming the rain from Hurricane Ida passes over quickly. Check out for the schedule & team rosters. [While you're on the Update Center's website, be sure to check out how you can become a Aiken Polo Club member! Full, social, or parking members get 2 tickets for every Sunday and complimentary access to the hospitality tent! It isn't too early to sign up for the 2010 Spring & Fall polo seasons!]

We look forward to seeing everyone this Sunday, November 15th for the last Sunday polo match at Powderhouse Field for the fall season. Note: The game is NOT at Whitney Field due to unsafe field conditions. The finals for this last tournament will most likely take place next Thursday, so be sure to check the Update Center for those details!

Until Sunday, Marco...