The Gonzalez father and son duo are preparing for the Florida high-goal season: Mariano and his son Peke talk about their experience playing together on Goose Creek.
“Playing with Peke has been my lifelong motivation – having a son and being able to play with him. Organizing polo horses is very tough, it’s great to make it, you keep improving day by day and I try to help Peke as much as possible,” Mariano said. “I want to play with my dad and win as much as I can,” Peke echoed.
Peke is only 18 years old, but has been playing in the U.S. for a while. “We have played together abroad for a long time now, but Peke started playing in the U.S. when he was 14,” affirms Mariano. At the beginning of the 2017 season they began playing on the same team. “I started playing the 20-goal with my dad, Maureen Brennan and Tomas Garcia del Rio from January to March,” Peke said. A father keeping up with his son, a very common story in polo, although the Gonzalez are one of the few pairs which currently compete at a highly competitive level.
“My dream is to play the Palermo Open and get as far as I can,” Peke revealed. Supporting his son’s growing career is a big challenge for Mariano. “My son got started in polo really young, first with Pablito MacDonough and then with Facundo Pieres. He’s made a great career of it so far and I’m glad he’s continuing to improve. He is very enthusiastic about the game,” Mariano said of Peke.
The love of polo flows through the Gonzalez veins. Peke’s grandfather, Daniel, played the Palermo Open winning it with two different historic teams: Coronel Suarez and Santa Ana. Mariano himself has played a few times, and now Peke is looking to do the same. “I think Peke’s improving as a player. I’m going to help him as much as I can with horses and the organization, meanwhile he’ll slowly start doing it on his own, which is the hardest part,” Mariano revealed. “He’s a good player, so I think the biggest challenge is getting the horses, the budget and the support, in addition to having the luck to find the best horses or to train them.”
Maureen Brennan looks forward to playing with the Gonzalez duo and partnering with GSA.
Maureen Brennan loves polo. She was recently in Argentina playing for Goose Creek La Varzea in the First Women’s Palermo Open, and she is always up to date with the latest information on anything happening in the polo world. That is why she celebrated the victory of Mariano and Peke Gonzalez in the Provincia Cup, a very important tournament in the AAP’s spring season. “It was really amazing that they had won that tournament together. Mariano told me that his father won it in 1958, it’s pretty cool,” said Brennan. “I’m playing with Mariano and Peke in the 20-goal at the International Polo Club Palm Beach in January, and also taking part in the 12-goal at Grand Champions, but in the 12-goal I will only play with Peke. I’m not sure what I’m doing in March.” Brennan and Henry Porter will share the players between the two teams. “In February it’s Henry Porter playing with Matias, Mariano and Santino Magrini, with GSA. Henry and I are sort of sharing the players and then in March we will do something similar, where I play one tournament and Henry will participate in another”.