The Newport International Polo Series will host the Vanderbilt Cup Presented by Vanderbilt International Properties on Saturday, July 11 at 5pm, in a rivalry that dates back to the Gilded Age, pitting the Vanderbilts against the Astors in an action-packed 6-chukker ride off. 

Presented by Vanderbilt International Properties Ltd., a boutique real estate firm specializing in luxury homes, private club properties, and condominium development programs in Newport and Bristol Counties as well as in far reaches of the world.  Vanderbilt International Properties is a proud, long-time supporter of Newport International Polo.

“While we represent many buyers and sellers for unique luxury properties, we are happy to work with everyone from first home buyers to helping a client find the perfect cozy cottage” explains Principle Broker Stacie Mills. “We believe in building long term relationships with our valued clients, many who become friends”. 

The polo matches are one of destination Newport’s unique traditions & renown attractions, dating back to 1876 when Newport’s sporting set founded America’s first polo club.  Members of the Vanderbilt family were among the earliest players of the new pastime. 

Rivals in business and New York society, the Astors, Vanderbilts and other notable scions would convene annually in Newport for summer retreats.  As leisure & sporting pursuits became the gentlemanly form of one-upmanship, dueling fell out of fashion and several new traditions became mainstays including Polo, Sailing, Tennis, Golf, and eventually automobile racing, among lasting American institutions.  Influencers of their day, they brought about many cultural changes from sports, art, technology and social & political reform, shaping Newport’s rise to prominence to this day as an international seaside sport and resort destination, and one of America’s most desirable places to live and work.

Gilded Age themes will provide inspiration for the Stella Artois Tailgate Contest, back by popular demand as the world’s #1 Belgian beer, Stella Artois toasts the most spirited Newport Polo fans each Saturday. Special guest judges scout the perimeter to find the most festive Tailgate, Picnic Patch or Pavilion Table, awarding a coveted prize and Jumbotron moment of fame.

Color commentary is provided by William Crisp, arguably the most highly respected polo commentator in the world.  The match will begin with an Official Coin Toss following player introductions and the US National anthem, with a half-time intermission, and conclude with the Newport Polo Fan Salute around the perimeter, a tradition originating at the Newport International Polo Series in 2003, and now emulated at polo clubs around the world, and the Veuve Clicquot Champagne Toast & Trophy Presentation with representatives from Vanderbilt International Properties awarding the sterling silver Vanderbilt Cup, inaugurated in 2010.

Under a State-approved plan including reduced capacity with socially-distanced tables in the Davitt Pavilion, fieldside Tailgates and Picnic Patches on the lawn from which to view the matches at the polo grounds, sold-out audiences have enjoyed the Newport International Polo Series polo matches every Saturday since Opening Day on June 6, where spectators for generations have witnessed the timeless sport unfold across an argyle-patterned emerald green at Glen Farm, home of the Polo Series for the past 28 seasons, in a classic exhibition of horsemanship and valor, with host, the Newport Polo Club, where the home team – Newport/USA – meets challengers each season from around the world and as well as teams representing major US cities and regional rivals.  

Safety being a top priority, RI State approved COVID-19 safety measures are in effect at the polo grounds this season including online sales, masks required when not seated, social distancing and greatly reduced capacity.  Read full details

The Polo Series is scheduled to continue for the next 12 weeks, every Saturday through September. The schedule of teams is subject to change, as per State mandates in effect at the time, on international travel and Adult Sports.  Tickets are by online reservation only, supported by a Wait List, at www.nptpolo.com.

The International Polo Grounds are located on the acreage of Glen Farm, 250 Linden Lane (off of Rte. 138) in Portsmouth, RI. This bucolic setting is the last 100 acres of a pre-colonial settlement from the 1600’s that became the Town of Portsmouth’s original gentlemen’s farm, an 800-acre manorial estate established during a Gilded Age movement of retreat from the high life into pastoral country acres. 

Its classical 19th century stone barns and its park-like grounds were rehabilitated by Polo Series founder, Dan Keating in the early ‘90’s and continue to thrive as an equestrian & community recreational property, and home of the Polo Series. 

Minutes from the bustling Newport waterfront, the polo grounds’ proximity to the shore provides a cooling coastal effect for late afternoon polo throughout the summer, continuing a 5-week trend of mild summer weather conditions in the weekend forecast.  

The Newport International Polo Series is proud to present its 2020 sponsors including Gallo|Thomas InsuranceDavittBoston CommonHotel VikingThe ChanlerThe Newport Harbor Hotel & MarinaVanderbilt International PropertiesVeuve ClicquotClarke Cooke HouseStella ArtoisROCKSTAR LimoAtria Senior LivingGoslingsMcGrath Clambakes and Catering, and promotional partners including The Cocktail GuruNewport Jaguar ToursNewport Helicopter ToursAmerica’s Cup ChartersInternational Tennis Hall of FameNewport MansionsIsland Surf and SportNewport Sport Fishing ChartersProvidence River Boat Company, and Newport Harbor Guide.  Special thanks to Schultz Marketing Partnerships, Van Liew TrustTanglewood, and WCRI Classical Rhode Island.  “Our sponsors have been with us since the beginning. Without their support, the Series would not be as extensive as it is,” explains Dan Keating, Polo Series founder.

For specific details about the players, concessions & amenities for this match, plus venue information and other details, sign up to receive the Game Day Briefing on Saturday, by private subscription (sign up).  Stay current with all 2020 season announcements, latest news & event invitations, and more by subscription to our monthly eMagazine (sign up).  Both subscriptions are private and spam-free.

RAIN DATE: If a regularly scheduled match is canceled prior to its start (due to weather/field conditions), the match will be postponed to the following day, Sunday at the same time.  All original polo match tickets & seating reservations will be transferred to the rain date.  For more details on our ticket policies, please follow this link.  Attendees are advised to come prepared for all weather conditions, as existing shelter is reserved.  In inclement weather, always check the Match Status recording on our Info Hotline (401) 846-0200 x2 and for Alerts published on our website, both of which are updated with any status change for the impending match. 

This is the 29th season of Newport International Polo Series, which has hosted teams from 34 nations including, Ireland, Germany, Spain, England, Argentina, France, Egypt, India, Australia, Costa Rica, Ghana, Canada, Chile, Jamaica, Nigeria, Portugal, New Zealand, Barbados, Scotland, South Africa, Hungary, Dominican Republic, Netherlands, Kenya, Brazil, China, Italy, Mexico, Sweden, Singapore, Monaco, Morocco, Peru, and Poland.

Polo, since 600 b.c.  Polo is, without doubt, the oldest ball game in the world today. First recorded in the 6th century b.c. when the Turkomans beat the Persians in a diplomatic tournament, the alluring game caught on with equestrian royalty and cavalry, and took off with globalization, withstanding the tests of time. By the time Polo arrived on Newport’s shores during the Gilded Age, the sport was nearly 2500 years steeped in tradition, captivating newcomers like Newport’s summer sporting set who embraced the new pastime, establishing America’s first polo club in 1876.  A charter member of the United States Polo Association the club today is still a trailblazing model polo club, hosting the Newport International Polo Series public exhibition matches, supporting philanthropic causes, organizing USPA tournaments, polo club member services and polo instruction year-round. Experience the king of games in its American landing at Newport Polo. 

© Thomas Wirth

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