SUPA National University Championships

uniFour days of fun and games at Rugby Polo Club

The largest tournament in the country ended yesterday after four days of polo played by University students from the length and breadth of the country. The annual arena event had over 300 students participate in 120 teams with over 100 horses travelling to the Midlands Club. Seasoned players and complete beginners took part in 10 different sections, all looking to take home a trophy for their University Clubs. The action didn’t stop there with Rugby Polo Club putting on an exhibition high goal match on Friday evening as well as barrel racing (which featured Squeeky from the Polo Times Running Reports) before the ‘traffic light’ party on Saturday evening.

University of London Polo Club won the Open this year with a team line-up of Harold Hodges, Charlie Scott and Peter Elser. Amongst the many other winners of the weekend, Oxford Brookes claimed a number of titles; for Beginner 1 with their team of Jessy Evans, Jake Hall and Alice Lyall; Beginner 3 with a line-up of Tommy Lyon-Smith, Hannah Turvill and Ellie Hoyer Millar and also the Novice 1 section featuring Olivier Philippe, Tom Waycott and Grant Polkinghorne. Warwick University also cleaned up with first place in Novice 2, Novice 2a and Beginner 2! The Association of Polo Schools and Pony Hirers Best Playing Pony for a hireling went to Guidiana, a retrained racehorse owned by Sean Wilson-Smith from the Hampshire Polo School. The 12-year-old bay mare was played by the Winchester University team and also Sam Boreham from Nottingham University in the beginner section. Daniel McCormick, who groomed for Exeter President Charley Howell, was presented with the Polo Times award for Best Turned Out Pony for Prima. The Chairman for SUPA, Charles Betz also announced two players that had been selected from their performance in the tournament to represent SUPA at the Empire Polo Club in March for a Test match against a USA selected Inter-collegiate side for The Townsend Cup. Lucy Bowman from the Royal Agricultural University and Adam Dove from Edinburgh University were selected with two further places still to be filled. Look out for our full report, Roll of Honour and sidelines social in the March issue. Polo Times had a fantastic time talking to all the players! Subscriptions are still available online through our website or call us in the office (01452 730770) if you weren’t able to make it to our stand at the weekend!

Photograph: Lucy Bowman for Royal Agricultural University in the Intermediate 1 Final. By Lucy Wilson.