Polo Players Edition

NOV 2011

Polo Players' Edition is the official publication of the U.S. Polo Association. Dedicated to the sport of polo, it features player profiles, game strategy, horse care, playing tips, polo club news and tournament results.

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Y ES T E R Y E A RS 1931: SANTA PAULA'S YEAR Santa Paula's Andres Gazzotti, Manuel Andrada, Jose Reynal, Juan Reynal and Alfredo Harrington swept through the U.S. on the way to a 1931 U.S. Open Championship win at Meadow Brook. O ne of the most impressive records in high-goal polo is that of the Santa Paula team during 1931. The combination was first seen in this country in the California winter season of 1930 where it won the Pacific Coast Open Championship and a number of special events, as a result of which they were moved to make their second trip in quest of the Open Championship. The team was composed of Manuel Andrada, Juan Reynal, Jose Reynal, Alfredo Harrington and Andres Gazzotti, all residents of Argentina, and their team name was taken from that of the Reynal Ranch. Thomas C. Nelson managed the venture and supervised the mounts which were of unusually high grade. More than half of their ponies in that year's events were the ones used in their first visit to this country and that had been turned out on a California ranch for about one year. The rest arrived from Argentina about the first of July. Perhaps the most interesting feature of this whole expedition arose from the fact that some of the best mounts in the possession 62 POLO PLAYERS EDITION of the team were those which they used in California. Their consequent necessary travel eastward to the Open Championship gave the opportunity for arranging special tournaments for the team in Chicago and Detroit, and a rare opportunity to demonstrate polo of a high order in both of these cities, for this team displayed a unique combination of polo ability and fortitude, which was indicated by their early play and proved by their subsequent record. They had gone back to Argentina after their victories in California and, without some of their best mounts, won the Argentine Open Championship of 1930. Major Frederic McLaughlin wanted to improve the level of polo in Chicago so he and friends contributed $20,000 to import the Old Aiken team from Long Island to play the Santa Paula team at the Onwentsia Club in Lake Forest. En route from California to Chicago about 20 of the 37 Santa Paula ponies contracted distemper which left them in a very low state throughout the Chicago tournament in which the famous Old

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