The Acquedotto Romano Polo Club crowd witnessed the first-ever POLO for the CURE event last June 28. The event, attended by over five hundred spectators, aimed at raising funds for Susan G Komen Italia Onlus who leads the way for breast cancer research across the globe.
The four-day affair began with a parade of players and horses from Piazza del Popolo to the Fendi flagship store in Largo Goldoni. This is a first-time activity for the city of Rome, which was followed by a cocktail reception.
The uniformed players and guests were treated with an incredible view overlooking the city while munching on unique culinary creations by renowned chef Fabio Cervio of la Terrazza restaurant at the Eden hotel. IN line with the event’s theme, everyone enjoyed Rosé champagne to honor the pink colors of the foundation.
The first two qualifying matches ended up with Marengo beating Nautor’s Swan with 8 to 6. La Tabita, meanwhile, beat Nipas la Patrona with 7 to 4. The following two days saw the semifinals where Marengo beat Nipas with 10 to 5; Nautor’s Swan won against La Tabita with 11 to 5. The happenings set up a rematch of the initial games.
The final day began with a showcase of a special display of antique police cars, presented by the national Italian Police. This was followed by the Fanfara of the Lancieri di Montebello, who entertained hundreds of spectators and marked the beginning of the final.
The first match for the third and fourth place was between La Tabita against la Nipas/La Patrona, which resulted in an easy win of 8 to 3 for La Tabita.
Before the start of the final game of the first Polo for the Cure, the Lancieri di Montebello performed the famous “Carosello delle Lance”. It included their reenactment of their traditional Cavalry attack – truly a distinctive pregame show! Afterwards, the extraordinary American folk singer Blaine Brown sang an emotional rendition of the Star Spangled Banner without musical a cappella. Finally, the Lancieri di Montebello band performed the National anthem of Italy, accompanied by the Cadets of the Nunziatella Military Academy in Naples.
The final game was played between the Marengo, led by Thai actress Sonia Coupling, and Nautor’s Swan, led by European female champion Ginevra Visconti. Each of these two teams houses the best female players in the world. 10-goaler Hazel Jackson from England played for Nautor’s Swan, while 9-goaler Lia Salvo and 7-goaler Milagros Sanchez played for Marengo.
After a very balanced match, neither team could extend its advantage by more than a goal. Finally, in the fourth chukker with less than two minutes to the end, both teams were tied at 7-all and unwilling to concede.
In the last seconds, however, Marengo was able to score two goals, not giving any chance to Nautor’s to recover. By the time the final bell rang, Marengo ended up victorious with 9 to 7.
During the halftime show, an Italian acrobatic air show took place while the spectators were stomping the divots. The planes performed loops, flyovers, and other phenomenal acrobatics.
The prize giving ceremony was followed by a grand finale of fireworks celebrating these amazing female athletes. Thanks to the support of everyone who participated in the first edition of POLO for the CURE, the committee was able to raise a net amount of over €20,000 for Komen ITALIA.
Here’s to more causes to help through our beloved horse sport!