Newport Fortifies for Pittsburgh Rivalry

Newport International Polo Seriespresented by Turkish Airlines is preparing for a 7th consecutive challenge from Pittsburgh on Saturday, July 15 at 5pm as the 32nd season gallops on, with one third of the season now completed.

The Steel City rivals hope to forge back-to-back wins, building on their arduous victory over the City-by-the Sea last summer when Pittsburgh decisively defeated Newport by a score of 12 – 7 led by Juan Villamil and Alex Burkland.

“Pittsburgh always sends a tough and gritty team to compete here, and the game always goes down to the wire.  We don’t underestimate their steely resolve – they have planned their strategy for a year, and we are anticipating their best team yet,” comments Dan Keating, International Polo Series founder and president.   

Loyal Steelers Nation and Newport fans can compete as well in the Best in Show contest, embodying a Steel & Metallic theme in honor of the City of Bridges’ rich industrial history spanning back to the Gilded Age. The most spirited fans who best capture the contest theme will be rewarded with prizes from Stella Artois. The decorative picnic tradition has earned Newport Polo the title of Best Tailgating in New England from Yankee Magazine. 

A weekly Door Prize Drawing will award a special gift from Veuve Clicquot to a very lucky spectator who will also be entered to win the Turkish Airlines Grand Prize Drawing, which includes 2 round trip business class tickets to anywhere in the world on Turkish Airlines.  

Last week USA narrowly defeated Newport Polo’s original international contender, Ireland by a final score of 12 – 10 led by a three-goal effort by Sam Clemens, cheered on by an exuberant capacity crowd.

The polo action will begin on Saturday at 5 pm (Gates open at 1 pm). Advanced ticket sales are available online; Lawn seats and standby options are available at game time at the entry gates. TD Bank cardholders can get 5% off polo admission upon entry.

Arrive early to enjoy pre-game refreshments, amplified music, games on the field, shopping, and socializing.  The match will begin with national anthem(s) followed by player introductions and Official Coin Toss to start the match.  After 3 periods called chukkers, a Halftime Intermission includes a stroll on the polo field for the divot stomp, a ‘treading in’ to replace divots, a time-honored polo tradition to repair the field for the second half.

Hospitality & Amenities: From 2:30PM, the Patio Bar is open for carry-out service for patrons throughout the venue, and beverage service to tables within the Pavilion starting at 4PM, offering a selection of signature cocktails created by The Cocktail Guru, premium spirits, boutique wines, imported & craft malt beverages, and soft drinks.  Licensed Gourmet Food Trucks dish out popular refreshments including handmade pizza, deluxe hotdogs, charcuterie boards, seafood chowder, and premium desserts, while specialty vendors present novel gifts, and the official sportswear & souvenir collection is available exclusively in the fieldside Pro Shop.  See Hospitality & Amenities for details and menus.  Expert commentary of the polo action is provided over the PA, and instant replays and live-action game footage are produced on the polo world’s first Jumbotron. Personalized messages on the Brenton Hotel Jumbotron can be requested through the online portal no later than 9AM the day before the match.

Closing Ceremony: After 6 periods of competition, called chukkers, the match will conclude with a victory lap by the teams as they circle BD Field in the Newport Polo Fan Salute – a tradition originating at the Newport International Polo Series in 2003, and now emulated at polo clubs around the world – followed by the Veuve Clicquot Champagne Toast & Trophy Presentation of coveted prizes from Providence Diamond on the polo field in front of the Pavilion, with MC William Crisp and presenter Andy Ross, Managing Director/GM of Brenton Hotel, plus autograph signing, and an après polo cocktail hour celebration in the Modern Luxury Lounge at the Patio Bar to conclude festivities. 

The Newport International Polo Series is proud to name its 2023 sponsors including Brenton Hotel, BD, TD Bank, Turkish Airlines, Modern Luxury Boston, Herb Chambers Exotics, Vanderbilt International Properties, Hotel Viking, The Vanderbilt, The Chanler at Cliff Walk, Newport Life, Providence Diamond, Veuve Clicquot, ABSOLUT, Clarke Cooke House, The Truth About Horses, CCE Golf Cars, BMW of Newport, Atria Senior Living,Northwestern Mutual, Charles Schwab, Insperity, AAA Northeast | Viking, A-1 Roofing, US Polo Assn, Stella Artois, Visit Jamaica, Goslings,ROCKSTAR Limo, and Classical 95.9 WCRI; and promotional partners including Newport Helicopter Tours, The Cocktail Guru, Newport Jaguar Tours,Picnic Charters, Island Adventures, On Watch Sailing, International Tennis Hall of Fame, Newport Vineyards, Newport Mansions, Island Surf and Sport, Newport Picnic Co. and Audrain Automobile Museum.  

“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.

Dating back more than 130 years in Newport, the polo matches are one of Newport’s unique traditions and world-renowned attractions, a living legacy from the Gilded Age, and open to the public.  Spectator audiences enjoy the athletic display and horsemanship every Saturday in June thru Sept. at 5 PM / 4 PM in Sept. Minutes from downtown Newport, the International Polo Grounds are located at historic Glen Farm, 250 Linden Lane (off of Rte. 138) in Portsmouth, RI.

The Polo Series will continue every Saturday through September with the 2023 roster of international challengers, including Ukraine, Spain, Ireland, Italy, Sweden, Jamaica, England, and South Africa, as well as US city rivals, Boston, Pittsburgh, Palm Beach, New York, and championship matches of major Northeast tournaments, A1 Roofing Independence Cup, Governor’s Cup by Charles Schwab, and BMW Newport Pro-Am among the 18 featured matches this season.

The Polo Grounds’ favorable proximity to the shores of the island’s Sakonnet east passage provides reliably cool coastal effects, moderating afternoon temperatures and providing a dependable breeze for the late afternoon polo matches all summer.  

Minutes from the bustling Newport waterfront, the International Polo Grounds are located on the scenic 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, to become the future home of polo in the next century. Its classical 19th-century stone barns and its park-like grounds were rehabilitated by Polo Series founder, Dan Keating in the early 1990’s and continue to thrive as an equestrian & community recreational property, and home of the Polo Series.  

Photo Credits: 2022 Newport vs. Pittsburgh by Stephen Almeida Photography

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.