The polo community was in shock after receiveing the news of the unexpected passing of Francisco Dorignac in the morning on Saturday April 24. He was 82-years-old and suffered a massive heart attack.
Frankie, as everybody called him within the polo family, was a renowned player and directive. He was the back of the legendary Santa Ana foursome, who battled Coronel Suarez in those unforgettable clashes, back in the 60s and 70s. He won the Argentine Open three times – 1971, 1973 and 1982. The win in 1973 earned the Triple Crown for Santa Ana; in addition, he claimed the Tortugas Open and the Hurlingham Open on several occasions. In 1975, and alongside with the 10-goalers of those years (his brother Gastón, Gonzalo Tanoira, Horacio Heguy, Alberto Pedro Heguy, Juan Carlitos Harriott, Alfredo Harriott and Daniel González), Frankie played the first ever 80-goal match at Palermo, to conmemorate the first polo match played on Argentine soil and at the same time, pay a tribute to the first derby of polo history, El Trébol vs. Venado Tuerto. That day, November 1 1975, Frankie wore the Venado Tuerto jersey, in a lineup composed by Gastón, Juan Carlitos Harriott and Horacio Heguy.
Later on, he was an enthusiastic and active polo directive; he was the President of the Tortugas Country Club, and President of the Argentine Polo Association, a position he hold for three terms – 1987-1991, 2005-2009 and 2013-2017. It was under his first presidency that the Campeonato Argentino del Interior con Handicap (CAIH) was created, with the idea to encourage polo all over Argentina and give the sport a remarkable place within the sport. The first edition was played in the province of Entre Ríos, in 1988.
Francisco Dorignac has been renowned with several awards thoroghout his career as a player and directive. Among others, he received the Olimpia de Plata as the best polo player of the year (1971, 1973 and 1982), and the Delfo Cabrera Award for his remarkable sporting career, presented by the Sports Committee of the Senate of Argentina, in 2005.
PoloLine deeply mourns his unexpected passing, sending our love and deep condolences to his family in this tough time. Our thoughts and prayers are with them.