Beach Polo Classic Gallops Into Brant Beach Oct. 5

By Juliet Kaszas-Hoch | Sep 18, 2019

Brant Beach — It will be a Long Beach Island first when a polo match is played on Brant Beach’s 68th Street beach on Oct. 5.

The ponies and the players will take part in a Beach Polo Classic, sponsored by Long Beach Township and Tinicum Park Polo, based in Erwinna, Pa. Rain date is Sunday, Oct. 6.

Gates open at noon and the match begins at 1 p.m. Tickets are $10 per person. A portion of proceeds will benefit local charities.

“A sport unlike any other, polo showcases the powerful bond between a player and his or her equine partner,” notes the U.S. Polo Association, at uspolo.org. “As one of the oldest team sports, polo is an exhilarating combination of horsepower, athleticism and control.”

As the Tinicum Park Polo website, tinicumparkpoloclub.org, explains, polo is believed to have originated in Asia “more than 2,000 years ago as a valuable way to train and condition cavalry. Known in the East as the ‘Game of Kings,’ the modern sport of polo had its beginnings in the 1860s in Punjab, India, when British officers took up the game they had seen played by local horsemen. The game was introduced in England in 1869 and in America by 1876.”

Today, polo is now played in more than 75 countries around the world.

The Tinicum Park Polo Club, the website states, “features a perfect blend of polo professionals and amateurs, male and female players, and multi-national representation from countries including Argentina, Egypt, India, Pakistan, Sweden, Australia, Mexico and, of course, all regions of the U.S.”

In polo, “players score by driving the ball between the opposing team’s goal posts using a bamboo mallet while riding at speeds of up to 35 mph,” U.S. Polo explains. “The team with the highest score after four to six chukkers (periods) of play win the game. If both teams are tied at the end of the final chukker, play will go into overtime.”

Polo, the association emphasizes, “is full of thrills, teamwork, technique and true sportsmanship. The game is played at intense high speed, requiring peak athletic conditioning of both horse and rider. Today, the level of play and the amount of polo being played is the highest in the game’s history, generating rapid global expansion in participation and spectatorship.”

For more information, or to purchase tickets, visit tinicumparkpoloclub.org/events/beach-polo-classic.  —J.K.-H.

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