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Saratoga Polo kicking off 121st season

July 05, 2019 06:43 PM

SARATOGA - The champagne's ready and there's plenty of it as the Saratoga Polo season was getting ready to start on Friday night. Matches are held Fridays and Sundays at 5:30 p.m. on Whitney Field.

"Everything from tailgating to we have a new luxury seating called the Veranda Club this year with clubhouse seating and we have players coming from all over the world," said Managing Partner Jim Rossi.

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Among the top players is five-goal player Pablo Dorignac from Argentina. He began playing in 1992 at age 19 and would be considered the equivalent to a non-starting major league baseball player.

"I like Saratoga," Dorignac said. "I really missed playing in this place and Jim gives me an opportunity to come back. We are in a new project and that's what we want to do."

Just like the main Saratoga Race Track, there's a Whitney Cup, too. This year, it's Sunday, August 4.

In the game itself there are six chukkers, or periods, and matches are played on a field 9 1/2 times the size of a football field: 300 yards x 160 yards.

"It is a big field and you have to sort of ease your way into learning how to watch a polo game and it's a lot of fun when you learn, so we're happy to teach you how to do that," said Ed Armstrong, Polo Operations Manager from Amherst, MA. He has been playing for 30 years.

William Collins Whitney found the field in 1989, named it for his son H.P. Whitney, a 10-goal player, in 1901. It's considered the fourth-oldest in the country. The grounds were abandoned to farmland in 1934 then found and rebuilt in 1978-79. Saratoga Polo is calling this the 121st season.

"We are ready, the field looks amazing," Dorignac said. "We've been working so hard."

Tickets can be purchased here.

Credits

WNYT staff

Copyright 2019 WNYT-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved

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