Independence Cup Kicks Off Summer Polo Season
Aspen Valley Polo Club’s much-anticipated ninth summer polo season begins Sunday with the Independence Cup at McClure River Ranch.
By Sharon Robb
Photos by Aspen Valley Polo Club
Los Amigos, NetJets and Casablanca will compete for the season-opening title in a round robin at 11 a.m. MST. Los Amigos and NetJets will play first.
Team lineups are:
Los Amigos: Paul Foster, Marc Ganzi, Gonzalito Pieres, Tomacho Pieres.
NetJets: Melissa Ganzi, Nacho Figueras, Alejandro Novillo Astrada, Juan Bollini.
Casablanca: Alejandra Foster, Grant Ganzi, Nic Roldan, Torito Ruiz.
The world’s destination spot for summer polo has attracted some of the top players in the world including 10-goaler Gonzalito Pieres, 8-goaler Nic Roldan and 7-goaler Alejandro Novillo Astrada as well as world-class horses.
The horses arrived early to acclimate to playing 7,908 feet above sea level. Much like elite athletes, horses benefit from playing in high altitude, enhancing blood oxygen-delivering capacity and improving vitality that has consistently translated to improved performance, aerobic power and stamina.
With the majestic 12,965-foot summit of Mount Sopris as a backdrop under a bright summer sky, polo returns to the valley July through September with a record thirteen tournaments.