THE PLAINS, Va. (WDVM) — It’s time to put on your Sunday best and your most decorative hat: the Virginia United Polo League begins their Sunday matches this weekend.
After a successful first year in operation, the league is offering Sunday matches from June 13 to September 5.
Rebekah Greenhill is the league’s marketing director and a polo player herself. She says training polo ponies takes months of work.
“That starts with a couple weeks of walking, trotting, and then we start to single them, ride them solo. The polo ponies are bred for agility and speed, and they’re mainly bred in Argentina, and a lot of us Americans ship them up,” said Greenhill.
The Virginia United Polo League is organized by Argentine players Tolito Fernández Ocampo, Marcos Bignoli and Juan Ghirlanda. Bill Ballhaus, from Beverly Equestrian, and father of young polo player Will Ballhaus, is sponsoring the event.
The matches will also feature players from other countries, as well as Northern Virginia locals. There will be 6, 8 and 12 goal tournaments throughout the season. Greenhill says horses may not be the only animal you see out on the field.
“We’re doing a doggy divot stomp. The polo starts and then halfway through we take a 20-minute break, we pour champagne the kids can run around the field,” said Greenhill.
Matches will be hosted at different polo fields in Fauquier County — Kingland Farm, Foxlease Polo and Beverly Equestrian.
“I think people want to get out and be outside and see beautiful animals. I love horses. There’s nothing like them they’re amazing athletic creatures and you just have to stand in awe at what they’re able to do,” said Greenhill.
Roughly 60-70 sponsors and professionals will be participating in the tournaments, and 400 people are expected for Sunday’s opening.
For ticket information, or to join the league, visit their website.