Gloucestershire Festival of Polo

Between Saturday 9 – Sunday 10 June, Beaufort Polo Club welcomed thousands of guests, players and spectators for the annual Gloucestershire Festival of Polo. On the first day, as the sun burst through the clouds, celebrity teams took to the field for the first match of the weekend. Spectators saw the likes of Olympian Victoria Pendleton, Made in Chelsea cast members George Amor and Francis Boulle, and polo professionals Rupert Lewis and David Ashby take to the field, and following a hotly contested match, Pendleton’s All Stars defeated their rivals in white to take home the win.
In the highlight match of the day, The Swinhay International Test Match for The Golden Jubilee Trophy, Flannels England fought back after a slow start to defeat Ireland 10-9½. The match was full of dramatic flair from the off, with both teams battling for possession. Ireland began the first chukka with persistence, but as Flannels England’s two youngsters, Henry Porter and Josh Cork, settled into the game, there was no stopping them. The Earl of Tyrone ably led his team, and following an injury delay for Sebastian Dawnay who was playing his last international match for Ireland on grass, looked like they might turn the tables in the last chukka, but despite a final race towards goal by Freddie Horne as the clock ticked down in the fifth chukka, it was not to be for Ireland. To end the day’s play, two junior teams took to the ground for a Junior Westchester trial match. The Hurlingham Polo Association Red team were strong from the start and defeated the Hurlingham Polo Association Blue team 6-1½.
The following day, the Club was full to bursting with revellers and polo aficionados, as youth teams took to the field for the Javier Novillo Astrada U15 Cup Final. Team Orange defeated Team Blue in a thrilling display of youth polo, which kept everyone on the edge of their seats. HRH The Duke of Cambridge next rode out for Maserati against Dhamani 1969 in The Maserati Royal Charity Polo Trophy. Maserati ultimately won the match 6-5½ to the delight of the assembled crowd. Following the presentation of the prizes, during which Karan Thapar was presented with the Most Valuable Player award, everyone wound down the evening with a cocktail or two, celebrating another successful Festival. A full report from the weekend will be included in the July issue of Polo Times.
The Golden Jubilee Trophy Teams:
Flannels England (16): Henry Porter (2), Josh Cork (2), George Meyrick (6) & Mark Tomlinson (6)
Ireland (15): Niall Donnelly (4), Sebastian Dawnay (3), The Earl of Tyrone (5) & Freddie Horne (3)
The Maserati Royal Charity Polo Trophy Teams:
Maserati (9): Bruce Merivale-Austin (0), Henry Porter (2), Malcolm Borwick (6) & HRH The Duke of Cambridge (1)
Dhamani 1969 (7): Antonio Manzorro (3), Karan Thapar (0), Antonia Carlsson (-2) & Mark Tomlinson (6)

Photograph: Flannels England defeated Ireland in The Golden Jubilee Trophy for the second year running. By Tom Reynolds