Impressive 10½-4 victory
Lavinia and Bellamar Pampa Norte went head-to-head in The VIII Thai Polo Cup Final on Friday 26 November at Thai Polo Club Argentina, with both teams eager to claim their first title. Lavinia began with an initial half goal handicap advantage and faced fierce opposition in the form of Bellamar Pampa Norte who put on a strong show of their offensive and defensive tactics, but by half-time Lavinia led 5½-3. The half-time interlude included a horsepower vs pony power race with a BMW 5 Series 530 vs a Thai Polo Nearside player riding Odisiana, which resulted in a win apiece.
The second half began with rumours of a Bellamar Pampa Norte comeback, but by the fifth and sixth chukkas, it was Lavinia who were controlling the action with Carlos María Ulloa and Manuel Giménez Villamil commanding the team from the back and combining well with their forwards, Ramon Cassino and Jack Whitman to secure Lavinia their first Thai Polo Cup title, 10½-4. Ulloa was named Most Valuable Player, Carlos Braun received the Fair play Award, Alberta Belvedere, played by Ulloa, was the Best Playing Pony of the Final and the Argentine Association of Horse Breeders’ Best Playing Pony of the Final was Future Lituania also played by Ulloa.
VIII Thai Polo Cup Final Teams:
Lavinia (13): Ramón Cassino (3), Jack Whitman (0), Carlos María Ulloa (6) & Manuel Giménez Villamil (4)
Bellamar Pampa Norte (14): Carlos Braun (1), Ned Hine (4), Santiago Llavallol (4) & Javier Guerrero (5)
Photograph: Lavinia, winners of The VIII Thai Polo Cup. By Matias Callejo