Polo Players Edition

JAN 2019

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.

Issue link: https://polo.epubxp.com/i/1064372

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Page 10 of 67

POLO P L A Y E R S E D I T I O N 9 S tarting upwards of 500 horses for a variety of disciplines, ranging from polo, to eventing, and hunter jumpers, Midstates Circuit Governor Trey Schott has established himself as a jack-of-all-trades over the course of his diverse equestrian career. A semi-retired equine veterinarian and former 5-goal professional polo player, Schott has shifted his focus to training and developing green horses alongside his son, Buck Schott, on their family-operated River Mountain Farm in Versailles, Kentucky, and RMF South in Sarasota, Florida. Schott is passing on his lifetime of knowledge of horse care and training to his son, Buck, who plans on carrying on the family polo tradition. "My days of seeking silver trophies and tournament wins are over," Schott, who played professionally for over 20 years, said with a laugh. "Now, it's about finding and making the right horse and passing that on to Buck." Elected to serve his first term this year as circuit governor, Schott intends on giving back to the sport by facilitating and rejuvenating polo in the Midstates. Growing up in an equestrian family, Schott started riding in western performance as a teenager before discovering his love for polo. "My grandfather and father were both involved in horses and my four older sisters competed with American Saddlebreds, but nobody in my family had roots in polo," Schott explained. On his father's Wesridge Farm in Cincinnati, Ohio, Schott learned to play polo at the age of 15 with his father's business partner, Bob Sieber, and Sieber's three sons who stabled their horses at the facility. From there, he played and worked with his two younger brothers, Lou and Hal, and former Midstates Circuit Governor Mark Sedacca. "That was our summer team for three years before we all headed to college and summer pro jobs," Schott explained. An avid horse lover, Schott knew from an early age he wanted to become an equine veterinarian and was determined to finance his own education after his family filed for bankruptcy when he was 18. "I pulled myself up by my bootstraps and I started my own business to put myself through undergrad at the University of Cincinnati and then Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine," Schott explained. "During the school year, I worked as a [horse] dentist and a farrier at River Downs and Beulah Park [racetracks] and summers as a polo pro at Detroit Polo Club in Michigan. "During undergrad, I took a semester off to spend nine months in Trenque Lauquen, Argentina, with Hector Barrantes, Cacho Merlos and Gonzalo Pieres." Working hard to make his dream come true, Schott learned a variety of skills along the way and ultimately graduated with his DVM in 1981. Pursuing his career in both polo and veterinary medicine, Schott joined a practice in Lexington, Kentucky, where he specialized in Thoroughbred reproduction, farrier science, sport horses and lameness for over three decades. Now semi-retired from veterinary practice, Schott has more time to dedicate his focus to RMF's polo division. The entire Schott family is immersed in horses. "My wife Elaine runs the hunter jumper division of RMF and we've owned and managed the farm ever since it opened it 1985," Schott said. "Her side of the family is a Midstates polo family (Strouss) with her father, uncles and brother, Callan, all polo players." His daughter, Callie Schott, is following the path of her mother as a hunter jumper trainer and seasoned Grand Prix show jumper. Schott is happy to share his love of the sport with his son, working alongside him at both their home base in Kentucky, and seasonally in Florida. Spending the winter season in Sarasota, Schott brings 25-30 horses down to RMF South from December until April, buying, training and selling throughout the year. "Buck and I start the horses during the first year and Buck will take them on and finish them," Schott said. Having started in the sport himself over 10 years ago, Buck has grown up in polo, learning everything from horse care to training techniques from his father. "He's taught me how to be patient with green horses, educated me in farrier skills, dental work and basic vet care, including administering all medications, suturing and stapling, Trey Schott Midstates Circuit Governor

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