At the age of 28 years old Edouard Pan is a French polo player that has the chance to practice his job in the most popular places of the world. Passionate of horses, he discovered the polo industry very young, thanks to his family. He spends every day thinking about Polo. Actually he eats, sleep, and dream about Polo. His most powerfull strenght ? Definitely his horses. Portrait of a young and dedicated man, in exclusivity for Horsealot.
At what age did you start?
I started polo at the age of 12 years old
Hom come ?
I already knew how to ride. I use to jump in small competitions. One day i went to a horse jumping show and i saw a Polo Club offering polo class in Nomandy .I absolutely wanted to try. I found it funnier to play in a team with friends. Shortly after was cretaed the Polo Club de Chantilly just next to where my parents were living. I was one of the very fist client of the club.
Is your family part of the horse industry ?
My parents have always been passionate about horses and worked in this environment since their very young age. They both use to be instructors. They lived for 15 years in Africa, in Zaire where they ran a club. They helped me a lot when I had to buy me my first horses. Today my father gives riding lessons in the Polo club of Chantilly.
What is the most difficult aspect to deal with in the polo world ?
Horses are definitely the most important aspect of the polo player. If a good player has no good horses he will not play at his best. So you have to constantly look for new horses, buy, raise, sell.
How many horses do you have ?
Today I have a couple of horses, a dozen in France and some in Argentina
Describe your relationship with your horses
Every player has a lot of horses. They buy and sell constantly during the season. I try not to care to much or have attachment for my horses for this reason. I sure have incredible horses that i have a strong conection with. I won,t sell them, first because they’re my best horses, and second because i would like to offer them the best retirement they could have.
How do we recognize a good polo horse?
A good horse is not necessarily good for all players, everyone has their preferences. But what we are looking for in polo, are horses with a good head (mind), a strong acceleration, and especially a very good balance, which will allow us to hit the ball in the best conditions at any time.
What’s the name of your best horse?
My best horse is Pajarito. He unfortunately left us last September. One that could take its place is a new mare that I will bring back from Argentina to France next month Her name is Joya.
Polo involves travel, tell us your 2014-2015 adventures!
I started 2014 with the Frech team at the snow world championships in China, I then attended the Polo Masters Tour in Megeve and Courchevel. In France the season begins in May. I have the chance to play with the same team all season. We play all the big French tournaments. Chantilly, Saint-Tropez, Deauville. We won the Open de France last September in Chantilly for the 3rd consecutive year ! In October I went to Argentina where I am the “pilot” of an Argentine player, Diego Cavanagh. Begining of 2015 i wen to China, again, then to Megeve, and i have just came back from Thailand where i have played at the Thai Polo Club.
What pleases you most about this sport?
This sport has become a real lifestyle for me since i am part of it the 365 days of the year. I think what I like most as a professional player is to get to meet very different people all of the time. What I find really amazing in this sport is that one day I’m in a suit, champagne glass in hand and the next day I find myself drinking “mate” with petiseros at the stables!
Is it possible to play a match against a friend, then just after lunch with him?
In the polo teams change a lot and very often play together one day and the next day against. We are used to let what is happening on the ground in the field. I confirm that sometimes it’s a bit difficult especially when one loses .. At worst if not lunch, we dine together !!
How Polo change your life?
Polo today is a very big part of my life today. During the season I think about it every day and I spend my days at the stables thinking, working, riding. I do not consider this sport as my job but as my passion. Thanks to polo, I met great people, which are now part of my best friends.
Your plans for 2015?
The season will begin soon in France. I will play in April, May and June at the Chantilly Polo Club before heading out to St Tropez in July and August. I’ll be back in September For the « Open de France » and then i’ll fly directly to Argentina.
Your favorite song?
Right now Riptide, Vance Joy
Your favorite actress?
Your favorite movie?
Very recently, Whiplash