18th annual USC Aiken Pacers and Polo to be held Saturday

The 2023 edition of Aiken’s Triple Crown will come to a close Saturday with its final event, Pacers and Polo.

“We hope to have a crowd of over 300,” USC Aiken Vice Chancellor for Advancement and External Affairs Mary Driscoll said of Pacers and Polo. “Overall I hope it brings a crowd of 1,000.”

The 18th annual event will be held Saturday at the Powderhouse Polo Field and is considered the third jewel of Aiken’s Triple Crown. The Aiken Trials and the Spring Steeplechase are the first two legs of Aiken’s Triple Crown. 

Gates will open at 10:30 a.m. and the match is expected to start at 1 p.m. 

Polo teams sponsored by Alison South Marketing Group and Michelob Ultra will play six 7-minute chukkers, according to a news release about the event.

Proceeds from Pacers and Polo benefit scholarships for USCA students and is made possible in conjunction with the Aiken Polo Club, the alumni association and the USCA athletic department.

If rain is in the forecast, the event will be held Sunday, April 2.

Aiken Polo Club Manager Tiger Kneece will emcee the event and club President Charlie Bostwick will also be in attendance.

“This kind of highlights the last leg of the Triple Crown,” Driscoll said.

In addition to polo, the event will include an opening ceremony, a 20-minute intermission, and an awards ceremony at the end of the match. The day will also include a buffet lunch, a silent auction, railside viewing and seating.

“Aiken is truly blessed to have a wonderful university like USC Aiken. We are happy to be able to provide scholarship funds to help students with their education,” Alison South CEO Mike Thomas said in a media release. “This is always a lot of fun for the whole Alison South family, and we look forward to it every year.”

Driscoll said due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the event was not held in 2021 and 2022.

 Aiken Triple Crown wraps up with tight game, ‘good fun’

Tim Hall, the associate director of athletics at USCA, said the college has been involved with the Aiken Triple Crown since the 1980s. 

“It’s a fantastic event for athletics and the university,” Hall said. 

Driscoll said events like this are made possible by the community.

“This is a great event for the university and is one of the most highlighted events that our community loves to go to each year,” she said.

Tickets can be purchased at USC Aiken Athletic Department, Convocation Center at 2049 Champion Way, Graniteville.

Advanced VIP tent tickets are $75 and general admission tickets are $8 for adults, $5 for children and free for children under 6.

On the day of the event, VIP tent tickets are $90, general admission tickets for adults are $10 and children are $5, while children under 6 are free.

Parking at the event is $10.

The Powderhouse Polo Field is located 820 Powder House Road.

For more information, visit usca.edu.

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