Next Game

La Indiana vs Monterosso, Cartier Queen's Cup

When

Midday 24th May

Where

Nic Roldan’s Sunset Polo and Tregothnan have made the hottest ever tea

Nic Roldan’s Sunset Polo and Tregothnan have made the hottest ever tea

Nic Roldan with Tregothnan CEO Jonathon Jones trying their Sunset Polo blend they collaborated on together; © Alex Pacheco

Nic Roldan with Tregothnan CEO Jonathon Jones trying the Sunset Polo blend they collaborated on together © Alex Pacheco

Tregothnan are delighted to be supporting Nic Roldan’s Sunset Polo and his philanthropic work with this blend of truly British tea, created with transatlantic tastings by Nic Roldan with Tregothnan for Sunset Polo events.  The Sunset Polo tea blend will be available this Saturday at the $100,000 World Cup Polo Championships Final at Grand Champions Polo Club, where at 6pm Nic will be signing Sunset Polo Tea Caddies and will give one of his “NR” baseball hats away with each caddy bought.  Proceeds of the sales will go to Nic’s chosen charities.

$100,000 World Cup Polo Championships Polo Final at Grand Champions Polo Club

$100,000 World Cup Polo Championships Polo Final at Grand Champions Polo Club

Tregothnan is the nearly 700-year-old Estate in England and home of the first tea grown in the UK. Tregothnan tea was first planted in the family’s botanical gardens in 1999 and now produces many tons a year across the Estate, owing to the unique climate and deep sea creek of the river Fal.

A refreshing and aromatic blend of the freshest tea leaves, plucked and dried in England, retaining the greenest chlorophyll captured from the sun. The British tea is blended with China’s finest Green Tea, spicy Cardamom Pods and Tregothnan Chamomile. This revitalising blend of tea is finished with luxurious Saffron, giving it the golden glow of a Summer’s sunset.

Expectations from a tea blend could scarcely be higher. The brief for the tea blend, apart from being delicious was to deliver:

  • Hitting the ball
  • Athleticism
  • Faster horses
  • Improved personal appeal
  • Winning polo

And most importantly to help raise as much as possible to support Nic Roldan’s Sunset Polo Appeal.

Team Aithon Capital with commentator Toby Wayman- L-R- Toby Wayman, Timmy Dutta, Tony Calle, Aithon Capital CEO Hal Lehr, Brandon Phillips, Darren Marotta, Nick Manifold, Kris Kampsen & Aithon's Max Glasser

Team Aithon Capital with commentator Toby Wayman, L-R: Toby Wayman, Timmy Dutta, Tony Calle, Aithon Capital CEO Hal Lehr, Brandon Phillips, Darren Marotta, Nick Manifold, Kris Kampsen & Aithon’s Max Glasser © Enrique Urdaneta

Tregothnan is the leader in the UK luxury tea market and is the most premium tea brand in the UK. As a family estate Tregothnan was open to the request from Nic Roldan’s team to enhance The Game of Kings. Nic is the US polo captain and a top player in the US.

The pioneer of tea growing in the UK at Tregothnan has been personally involved in selecting the right leaves for this new blend and travelled to Florida recently to be part of Nic Roldan’s 2nd annual Sunset Polo & White Party. Jonathon Jones appears frequently in the media to explain the rapidly expanding world of tea. Jonathon says of the new and exclusive Nic Roldan’s Sunset blend that this is the most adventurous and stimulating tea blend ever. The transatlantic high society are sure to love this incredible tea and working with Nic has been a pleasure. Sample blends have been back and forth across the Atlantic to achieve the perfect finish and between the Sunset Polo Players Jonathon quickly became know as “The Tea Guy”.

L-R- Grant Ganzi, Darren MArotta, Timmy Dutta & Nic Roldan with Tregothnan CEO Joanthon Jones; Nic Roldan's 2nd Annual Sunset Polo & White Party

L-R: Grant Ganzi, Darren Marotta, Timmy Dutta & Nic Roldan with Tregothnan CEO Jonathon Jones © Enrique Urdaneta

Some of the fun suggestions from Polo fans were to make the tea increase the flow of Adrenaline and boost chances of meeting the right people! The Britishness of the tea is a strong characteristic and blends perfectly with Nic’s love of green tea. This accessible and refreshing green tea will appeal to even the most die-hard non-tea drinkers!

Tea is already trending as the healthy drink of choice for the new socialites. Nic Roldan’s Sunset Polo tea is a thoroughbred in every sense. The ultimate tea for the Game of the kings.

Notes:

The new tea blend is feature on the Tregothnan website and will be available on Saturday 15th April at the Final of the $100,000 World Cup Polo Championships Final at Grand Champions Polo Club.

Labe for Tregothnan Sunset Polo Tea Table

Tregothnan Sunset Polo Tea Blend

Nic is the US polo captain, top player in the US www.NicRoldan.com and see the event page: www.NicRoldan.com/Events

Nic is based in the UK for the UK high-goal season to solidify the connections and is expected to pluck some tea at Tregothnan for a very special brew!

The world’s largest tea pot was specially commissioned to help pour tea at the polo this weekend.

  • There are four black teas and ten herbal infusions in the Tregothnan range, which includes the world’s first and only Manuka tea.
  • Manuka honey is also created by Tregothnan – the only one of its kind outside its native New Zealand.
  • The current owner, Lord Falmouth, is the eighth great grandson of Earl Grey himself.
  • Tregothnan has the largest private botanic garden in the UK and is an official safe site for many rare and endangered plant species
  • A tasting of new teas will be a feature of the UK’s largest Garden opening for charity on 22nd & 23rd April 2017 at Tregothnan, tickets online
  • www.tregothnan.co.uk

*******

For further enquiries and image requests, please contact Bella Percy-Hughes on +44 (0) 1872 520000 or apercyhughes@tregothnan.co.uk in the U.S. please contact info@nicroldan.com

Top American Champions Meet: Racehorse California Chrome meets Polo Player Nic Roldan

Two Top American Champions Meet:

Champion American Racehorse California Chrome meets Champion American Polo Player Nic Roldan

California Chrome & Nic Roldan stood next to each other at Gulfstream only a few days before the Pegasus World Cup

Two American Champions: Racehorse California Chrome & Polo Player Nic Roldan © Barbara D. Livingston

  • Who:
    • Top American Champions Meet: Champion American Racehorse California Chrome meets Champion American Polo Player and captain of the US Polo team Nic Roldan
    • Nikki Walker, granddaughter of Gulfstream Park owner Frank Stronach, is an advisory board member of the Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance (TAA) and an accomplished equestrian, was also present
    • Fan favourite professional polo player Kris Kampsen, who also specializes in retraining OTTBs (Off-the-Track Thoroughbreds) to polo, was also in attendance
    • Additional Polo Players: Julian de Lusaretta, Luchino Ortiz de Urbina & Mia Cambiaso
    • Polo Pony trainer: Martin Phagouape
    • Polo veterinarians: Daren Tamplin (Palm Beach Equine) & Juan Pablo Quiroga (Adolfo Cambiaso’s vet)
    • Additional TAA Reps: Stacie Clark, Belinda Stronach, Danielle Nichter & Ashton Moynihan
  • What:
    • Nic watched California Chrome train and then had a “meet & greet” with him afterward, including a photoshoot opportunity.
  • Where:
  • When:
    • Monday 23rd January
      • 5:30 am: Training
      • 7:30 am: “Meet & Greet” and photo opportunity with California Chrome
  • Why:
    • An opportunity for these two champions in their respective sports to meet
    • To highlight the fact that over half of Nic’s string of polo ponies are “Off-the-Track Thoroughbreds,” and that this is a essential way these two regal disciplines can work together to provide a wonderful future for OTTBs
  • Contact:

Sport of Kings meets the Game of Kings

 

From January to May, the focus of the international polo world is on Wellington, Florida; and on Sunday 8th of January one of top American polo player Nic Roldan’s mounts was chosen as the Best Playing Pony of that game. The mare in question is a chestnut mare called Cubana, an “Off-the-Track Thoroughbred” (OTTB). In fact, over half of Nic’s current string are OTTBs. You can see some of his string here: http://nicroldan.com/polo-ponies-horses/; Tulsa, Ducati, Cohiba and Cubana are all OTTBs. In all facets, Argentina has the monopoly on polo, and players breed copious amounts of polo ponies on the pampas plains. However, Stateside, people often look to the racetrack as an essential source of their ponies.

Nic’s love for polo comes as result of his passion for horses. In polo, it’s considered that horses are 80% of the game whilst players only contribute 20%. As such, it’s the team with the best mounts that wins. Nic often highlights his mounts and, when highlighting Cubana’s success, he hit a cord and got a great response from not just the polo world but also the racing and fans of OTTBs. This provided a great and wonderful opportunity for these two disciplines to combine. Adding to this is the fact that two of Nic’s horse trainers, Osvaldo and Terri Gallitelli, come from the racing industry.

Thanks to Terri’s amazing work, the unique opportunity arose for Nic to go to Gulfstream Park to watch none other than California Chrome train – and then to meet him. For polo folks not in the know, California Chrome is racing’s answer, performance-wise, to Cuartaterra.

Thoroughbred California Chrome racing, winning the 2016 Kentucky Derby

California Chrome winning the 2014 Kentucky Derby © Barbara D. Livingston

California Chrome is racing’s all-time leading earner with $14,452,650. He is a seven-time Grade 1 winner and was the Horse of the Year in 2014 and 2016. This weekend, on Saturday, January 28, California Chrome will make his final start in the $12 million Pegasus World Cup Invitational at Gulfstream Park. The $12 million purse is the largest, worldwide, in the sport. California Chrome will then retire to stud at Taylor Made Farm in Kentucky.

California Chrome ©Laura Donnell

California Chrome © Laura Donnell

So at 5:30am, in the dark, on a Monday morning, there we all were at Gulfstream Park – and what an experience it was. We had unprecedented access to this amazing horse in one of the most important weeks of his life. We saw him get ready and train. Afterwards he was bathed and we were allowed hands on access – amazing! This was followed shortly after by a photo opportunity where Nic was given California Chrome to hold solo, which was a most surreal moment for him.

Special thanks must go to Duncan Taylor for this rare opportunity and thanks to the kindness and willingness of Alan Sherman to allow us access to this awe-inspiring athlete. The group also really enjoyed talking to Dihigi Gladney, California Chrome’s work rider. A special shout out must also go to the legendary racing photographer Barbara Livingston, who was a big part of this.

This was a serendipitous moment where two entities at the top of their game were bought together, able to highlight how these two regal disciplines can compliment each other and draw attention to the fact that polo is a fantastic avenue for the OTTBs.

It was wonderful how we were welcomed and how the racing fraternity was interested to hear about the OTTB’s use in our sport. Thoroughbreds makes some of the best polo ponies, and often are the best horses in all equine disciplines, as they are the fastest and most athletic. Especially as polo has evolved, Thoroughbreds have become prolific in the sport. We look for horses 15-15’2 in height, with short cannon bones, good angles at the hocks, body & head carriage, and of course sound and very quiet in character. Also, ideally in polo, we look for mares – which is a timing factor, as mares can play high-goal in 2-3 years but geldings mature later in our sport. On the way back, we joked that California Chrome was not too big for polo and that given he was retiring anyway after this weekend, he may just make it in time for the US Open Polo this year…well, in our dreams anyway! One of polo’s most well known ponies was a chestnut with a blaze down his face called Aiken Cura, so it was not hard to see a resemblance.

California Chrome posing with Alan Sherman, Nikki Walker, Nic Roldan, Juan Pablo Quiroga, Luchino Ortiz de Urbina, Julian de Lusaretta, Kris Kampsen & Daren Tamplin

L-R California Chrome, Alan Sherman, Nikki Walker, Nic Roldan, Juan Pablo Quiroga, Luchino Ortiz de Urbina, Julian de Lusaretta, Kris Kampsen & Daren Tamplin

We would like to thank the Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance for their enthusiasm and help in making this possible. Based in Lexington, Kentucky, this non-profit accredits, inspects and awards grants to approved aftercare organizations to retire, retrain and rehome Thoroughbreds using industry-wide funding. Along with continued funding from its original partners Breeders’ Cup Ltd., The Jockey Club, and Keeneland Association Inc., the TAA is now supported by owners, trainers, breeders, racetracks, aftercare professionals and other industry groups. To date, 64 aftercare organizations supporting more than 180 facilities across the U.S. and Canada have been granted accreditation and received funding from the TAA.

In the UK, where Nic plays from May through July, “Retraining of Racehorses” (RoR) is a similar program. They have a special scheme by which OTTBs are recognized in polo. OTTBs are marked with a special sticker so the public on the sidelines know they are OTTBs, and often a special prize is given to the best OTTB in a game. Those are two of their incentives to help generate awareness in this area.

Nic is also very active philanthropically in the area of equine welfare, via Brooke for whom he is an ambassador; as is Boyd Martin, who in turn also has a OTTB as one of his top mounts in the form of Blackfoot Mystery.

Nic and Terri will be presenting California Chrome with a halter and a stallion halter that they had specially made as token of their appreciation by Quillin Leather & Tack, Paris, Kentucky.

About Nic:

Polo Player Nic Roldan looking straight at the camera with a horse stood behind him

Nic Roldan © JuanLamarca.com for Aspen Luxury Life

Nic Roldan on the ball with Cubana during a polo game

Nic Roldan playing Cubana © Alex Pacheco/7ChukkerPolo.com

Fuelled by talent, charisma and passion, Nic Roldan is the present leading American polo player with an impressive 8-goal handicap rating. He is also the youngest polo player in the world to win the prestigious U.S. Open Polo title at the age of 15 and is currently Captain of the U.S. Polo Team.

Winning victoriously on all 5 continents at every goal level, Nic continues to gain worldwide acclaim. His goals are to increase awareness and participation for the sport at all levels, reach the highest accolade 10-goal status, play the Argentine Open, claim a second U.S. Open Polo title, add more worldwide Polo trophies to his cabinet and help America reclaim the infamous Westchester Cup.

Under his captaincy the U.S. Polo Team has benefitted in Internationals, as have an ever-increasing number of Beach Polo, Snow Polo and Charity events. His philanthropic involvement as team captain in Charity tournaments is widely recognized, as is his distinct modeling career. He is a dedicated ambassador to both Brooke USA and the Kids Cancer Foundation.

His commitment to popularize the sport he loves with a wider audience of younger players and new spectators reflects his passionate dedication to Polo.

Cubana’s story:

Nic Roldan's mare Cubana as a 3 year old free form the track with a mane etc

Cubana as 3 year old fresh off the track © Courtney Asdourian

Cubana (F, Chestnut, TB Name: Total Regs, by City Zip, b. 2010) is a OTTB mare who was broken in as a yearling in Kentucky by Bella Lowes.  Bella remembered her fondly and commented that Cubana just had the most amazing attitude, straightforward and really “bonnie.”

Kris Kampsen & Martin Phagouape bought her as a 3-year-old, in Lexington, thanks to the help of Mt Brilliant’s Gay Bredin.  Kris was keen to purchase her, as he knew her bloodline was special with her father being City Zip, one of the top sires in racing. As far as we know, Cubana is his only progeny in polo, as his bloodlines are simply unaffordable.

Nic Roldan & his horses trainers being awarded the Best Playing Pony prize

Cubana chosen as Best Playing Pony on Jan. 8th 2017 in the Joe Barry Game: Grand Champs vs Coca Cola © Alex Pacheco/7ChukkerPolo.com

Kris comments that she’s an incredible mare, and as soon as he sat on her he was impressed by how effortless she made every move.  Kris and Martin made her polo-ready and Kris started playing her at Grand Champions Polo Club, after which Nic bought her.  She played in the 2015 East Coast Open at Greenwich Polo Club and this is her first full Florida high-goal season. She has matured into a consistent great mare, doing everything that is asked of her, an all-rounder as far as her abilities go.

 

This Best Playing Pony award, in a league game of the Joe Barry Cup at the International Polo Club, marks her first – and it looks like a bright future for this mare stepping up to the plate in the big league.

To see Cubana’s TB info please look here.

More of Nic’s horses can be seen here. Several are OTTB’s.

Nikki Walker:

Nikki Walker Showing at WEF

Nikki Walker Showing at WEF

Nikki is an accomplished Equestrian daughter of Belinda Stronach, the President of the Stronach Group and the Pegasus World Cup. Nikki is coached by Irish Olympian Cian O’Connor in Wellington.

Kris Kampsen:

Nic Roldan and fellow professional polo player Kris Kampsen have been friends for a long time, both on and off the polo field. Kris has also become a regular source of horses for Nic to add to his string, so the recognition of Cubana once more confirms Kampsen’s skill in this area. He’s always on the look out for small OTTBs, with nice bone, short cannon bones, good angle of hocks and head carriage. Kris has developed a program to make them polo-ready. If ever you think you have something he may be interested in please reach out via horses@NicRoldan.com.

More images of Nic with California Chrome by Barbara Livingston are available in this link as are behind the scenes images and images of Nic’s OTTB’s taken by Enrique Urdaneta.  Please be sure to use the appropriate photographers credit’s as named in each photos filename and let us know if you need any in high-res.

Nic’s Travel Guide to Greenwich, Connecticut

An Illustration showing Polo Player Nic Roldan riding a flying carpet over the globe with suitcase behind himNic’s Travel Guide to: 

Greenwich, Connecticut, U.S.A.

Here’s the next instalment of my travel guide series: “Nic’s Travel Guide to Greenwich, Connecticut” where I recently spent a number of weeks whilst I was playing in the East Coast Open, it’s a great place to end to summer & it’s location provides so many options.

Best way to start the day: First to the gym, then to the barn to have maté (traditional Argentine “tea”) with my horse trainers & check on my horses.

Favorite restaurants:

The National Greenwich logo on the window

The National Greenwich

Favourite bar & tipple: The Granola Bar of Greenwich where I’ll have a macha smoothie

The Granola Bar, Greenwich CT Sign

The Granola Bar, Greenwich CT Sign

Favourite Hotel: The J House Greenwich, it’s where our team has always been based, a home away from home where they look after us great.

Image taking during an Audi Polo Team meeting showing the team watching a previous game on a big screen

Team meeting at The J House Hotel

Favourite Golf Club: Pound Ridge Golf club & The Stanwich Club

Favourite gym: Equinox Greenwich & I like to work out on & around the polo field’s here

Equinox Gym, Greenwich front facade

Equinox Gym, Greenwich ©Equinox

Polo Club where I’m playing at: Greenwich Polo Club, I played in the East Coast Open however Greenwich Polo Club is also home to the Brant Foundation & Jeff Koon’s amazing Puppy statue, a 43 ft (13 m) tall topiary sculpture of a West Highland White Terrier puppy, executed in a variety of flowers.  It truly is a stunning location & provides a unique backdrop

Summer or Winter: Summer

Must do’s while in town: Check out a polo game, walk Greenwich Avenue & play golf.  It’s a great location only 45 min from NYC & 2 hrs from the Hamptons & a bonus of the time of year I’m usually there is that the U.S. Tennis Open is going on so we get to go watch some games

Favourite Shop: Restoration hardware is always a good place to pick up some inspiration

Something I would have liked to have done but did not get round to or is at a different time of year: See all the leaves on the trees changing colour in fall

Trees in their autumn hues

Autumnal trees

My wheels: An Audi A8

Nearest airport: LaGuardia (LGA)

Nic Roldan Signature

Nic’s Travel Guide to Aspen, Colorado

An Illustration showing Polo Player Nic Roldan riding a flying carpet over the globe with suitcase behind himI often get asked in interviews about the places I’m at so I thought I would start doing my own “Travel Guide” from now on for each of the places I visit on my continual Polo Tour starting with my Travel Guide to Aspen, Colorado.

One of the things I love about polo is the travelling.  We get to play polo in some of the most beautiful places in the world, I myself have been lucky enough to play on all 5 continents, have seen some amazing sights and had some pretty unique experiences.

 

Nic’s Travel Guide to:

Aspen, Colorado, U.S.A.

 

After returning from the UK high-goal season I spent a month playing in Aspen which is fantastic. I hope you enjoy my tips here in my Travel Guide to Aspen, Colorado.  Find out where to go and what to do in the first of my travel guides, next up will be Greenwich, CT, U.S.A.. #NicsTravelGuides, #NicsTravels

 

Nic Roldan hiking in Aspen, CO with mountains behind him A red & pink sunset just before it gets dark taken from the Ute TrailBest way to start the day: A hike followed by a HIT class at Aspen Club

Favorite restaurants:

Cathedral Lake, Aspen with mountains in the backgroundNic Roldan & Carlitos Gracida stood with their bikes on one of the cycle routes in the mountains of Aspen in high summerFavourite bar & tipple: Cloud Nine Alpine Bistro, Peroni Beer

Favourite Hotel: The Little Nell

Favourite GolfClub: Roaring Fork Club

Carlitos Gracida & Nic Roldan stood golf clubs in hand on one of the green's of Aspen Golf Club A Mountain lake in the forest surrounded by fir trees in AspenFavourite gym: The Aspen Club (13)

Polo Club where I’m playing at: Aspen Valley Polo Club which offers all from a full summer T’ment program to arena polo as well as the World Snow Polo Championships just before Christmas. Also the place to go for a lesson whilst you’re in town Ripping it, taking a jump mountain biking in Aspen Trees & Tree trunks in Aspen on the mountain(17)

Summer or Winter: Summer is the best because of the endless activities!

Must do’s while in town:

  • Hiking (10), my favourite hike’s are: Cathedral Lake (3) & American Lake Trails
  • Biking (4), my favourite ride is: Valhalla, Aspen Snowmass
  • Dirt Bike riding in the back country (8)
  • Golfing (5)
  • Visit Aspen Art Museum (11)

Nic Roldan standing on one of Aspen's peaks having hiked up there in the summerNic Roldan, Carlos Gracida & a friend hiking in Aspen surrounded by fir treesFavourite Shop: James Perse, 312 S Hunter St, Aspen for my preferred basicsLocal suppliers: Performance, 614 E Durant Ave, Aspen or Ute Mountaineer

View of Aspen form above taken by Nic Roldan one of his early morning hikesUnexpected discovery: Spring Cafe

Something I would have liked to have done but did not get round to or is at a different time of year: Hike or dirt bike ride to Crested Butte

4 Images showing pieces of contemporary art on display at the Aspen Art Museum Carlitos Gracida & Nic Roldan on gym bikes doing a spin classMy wheels: Santa Cruz bike is the best form of transportation

Nearest airport: Aspen–Pitkin County (ASE)

www.aspenchamber.org

Nic Roldan Signature

Photo credits: Personal #TeamNR archive unless otherwise stated

131220 Aspen #SnowPolo, 3 Amigos c #McG #Kampsen by Matias CallejoAspen mountainous landscape with a few fir trees, all covered in snowNic Roldan & Brandon Phillips skiing with Aspen in the background

Three images of polo player Nic Roldan playing pollo, L-R: Normal (grass) polo, Arena Polo & Snow Polo

Regular (grass) Polo, Arena Polo & Snow Polo all at Aspen Valley Polo Club, Photo credits L-R: Louise Davidson, Nick Tininenko, Nick Tininenko

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nic Roldan takes part in the Vitality London 10,000 to raise funds for Brooke USA

On May 30th I will be taking part in the Vitality London 10,000 to raise funds for Brooke USA.  This 10km run was founded in 2008, has grown each year and is now known as one of the best, and most popular, road races around with over 12,000 people taking part.

I will be running to help raise funds for Brooke USA/ The Brooke. The run takes place in London starting and finishing in the gorgeous St James’s Park, the course will go past St Paul’s Cathedral, Houses of Parliament, the London Eye, Big Ben and Buckingham Palace, to name but a few!

Please help me help The Brooke with your donations, every little counts.

Here is my fundraising page:

Crowdrise Logo

Many thanks, Nic

Nic Roldan, Carlitos Gracida & Darren Marotta taking part in the Kids Cancer Foundation 5K, 2015

Nic Roldan (in yellow), Carlitos Gracida & Darren Marotta taking part in the Kids Cancer Foundation 5K, 2015

The Brooke is the world’s largest international equine welfare charity, dedicated to improving the lives of working horses, donkeys and mules in some of the world’s poorest communities. They provide treatment, training and programmes around animal health and wellbeing, operating across Africa, Asia and Latin America. The Brooke’s scientifically proven, practical, and sustainable solutions to enormous welfare challenges improve the lives of working equine animals. Brooke’s mission to help working horses and the people who depend on them resonated with Nic and he instantly felt a connection with the organisation. The Brooke’s goal is to increase the number of working animals we help to two million a year by the end of 2016.

Over $120,000 Raised for Working Equines During Inaugural Nic Roldan’s Sunset Polo & White Party, Benefitting Brooke USA

Brooke USA Grey Wins Inaugural Nic Roldan’s Sunset Polo Game at Event to Benefit Brooke USA

The most highly anticipated event of the season did not disappoint on Thursday, March 31, as over 500 guests gathered at The Wanderers Club in Wellington, Florida. It was the perfect setting for sunset polo, dancing under the stars and supporting Brooke USA. The inaugural Nic Roldan’s Sunset Polo & White Party, hosted by Mark and Katherine Bellissimo, to benefit Brooke USA, set a new precedent in Wellington, earmarking the end of the 2016- equestrian season and ushering in a new era with more than $120,000 raised for working equines globally.

“We are so excited and overwhelmed by the generosity and support that was shown during this inaugural event,” Executive Director of Brooke USA, Emily Dulin said. “We want to personally thank Mark and Katherine Bellissimo for hosting such an outstanding and successful event, and we also thank our Brooke USA ambassador, Nic Roldan, for conceptualizing this event and putting together an amazing team of hardworking volunteers.”

Sunset Polo:
A thrilling polo game kicked off the inaugural event after a cocktail-hour performance by Ki-Juan Minors. Roldan, rated at 8 goals, led the Brooke USA Grey team to a 6-5 victory over Brooke USA Orange, captained by 6-goaler Kris Kampsen. Brandon Phillips (5), Timmy Dutta (0) and Ricky Mershad (0) rounded out the orange team. Justin Daniels (1), Grant Ganzi (1) and Henry Porter (1) completed the grey team.

Before the game began a moment of silence was observed in memory of recently deceased polo player Bob Daniels, one of his sons played on the winning team. Roldan has longtime family ties to Bob Daniels. His father, Raul Roldan, played and worked for Daniels for 30 years. Nic Roldan also played many years with Daniels, reaching the 1999 U.S. Open final together as Pony Express.
The Brooke USA match was anyone’s game from start to finish, with the score

Highlights slideshow of the Inaugural Nic Roldan’s Sunset Polo & White Party frequently tied or fluctuating back and forth with a tight spread. Toby Wayman of Chukker TV announced the game, giving a play by play for the spectators.

Both teams showed amazing teamwork throughout. Daniels made the first goal of the day on an open back shot and followed up in the next chukker with a three-quarter neck shot that sailed straight through the goal posts. In the second chukker, Mershad brought the orange team to a three-point lead, with all three of his teammates assisting on the goal. Sixteen-year-old Porter made two back-to-back goals in the third chukker, tying the game at 4. In the fourth he scored again with a full-field run. Mershad made the final goal.

“I always enjoy playing in charity games, but this one was amazing,” said Kampsen. “Nic did an awesome job organizing this event for Brooke USA by incorporating some of these really talented young players we have. It was so much fun!”

Emily Dulin and board member Jim Wolf presented the trophy to the winning team. The Polo Times Best Playing Pony award, chosen and presented by Gil Johnston, went to Dallas, played by Phillips in the fourth chukker. Porter, the high-scorer in the game, was named Most Valuable Player.

Brooke USA Orange & Grey team line up's of all the players taking part in Nic Roldan's Sunset Polo

Brooke USA Orange & Grey Line Up’s, L-R_ Brandon Phillips, Ricky Mershad, Timmy Dutta, Kris Kampsen, Grant Ganzi, Nic Roldan, Henry Porter & Justin Daniels ©Alex Pacheco/www.7chukkerpolo.com

Brooke USA:
Roldan is an official ambassador for Brooke USA, the American fundraising arm of the world’s largest international equine welfare charity, the Brooke. Brooke USA is dedicated to improving the lives of equines around the world, providing veterinary care, education, and resources to care for working horses, donkeys, and mules. Brooke USA supports the efforts of the Brooke and has worked in some of the most impoverished areas around the world for the last 80 years, helping more than 1.8 million equines and more than 10 million people who rely on these animals last year alone.

For Roldan, it was clearly a labor of love. “Our goal was to create as much awareness as possible in the community about Brooke USA’s efforts. It’s a good cause, and it’s close to our hearts because we love equines,” he said. Roldan extended his thanks to the event hosts, Katherine and Mark Bellissimo, who he said “went above and beyond” by providing the magnificent venue at The Wanderers Club and donating food and other amenities.

PoloGear USA donated the team jerseys, as well as custom saddlebags worn by miniature horses and donkeys that walked along the sidelines collecting cash donations for Brooke USA. Roldan, who came up with the idea to include the furry ambassadors, borrowed the mini-equines from his friends.

Teaming with spectators, the sidelines were abuzz about the next Nic Roldan’s Sunset Polo & White Party, which is slated to return to Wellington in 2017.

After the polo exhibition, guests moved pool-side where they enjoyed a night of dancing and drinks in their white attire. Rocco Mangel of Rocco’s Tacos emceed the event, and DJ Adam Lipson made sure everyone stayed on their feet and had a good time.

The inaugural event exceeded expectations, and during the live auction Brooke USA was able to raise enough money to build two permanent water troughs during the “Bid for a Cause.” Because of the generosity of the Bellissimos, Roldan, sponsors, guests and the hardworking committee, working equines will have improved lives and continue to become healthier, stronger and happier as they continue their crucial jobs.

“We are proud to be a part of such a special event with Nic to benefit Brooke USA and pleased that the first year was such a success,” said Katherine Bellissimo. “We look forward to making this an event that our community supports and looks forward to every year.”

Scenes from Nic Roldan's Sunset polo, showing a Brooke USA cuddly horse mascot, the pool area & the VIP Cabanas overlooking the polo field

Cabanas overlooking the polo field at The Wanderers Club. ©Meg Banks/Equestrian Sport Productions

An added word of thanks from Nic:
Nic personally would again like to express his utmost thanks to everyone who turned out for the event or made donations, to the people who generously donated towards the cabanas and to all who participated in the auctions. Many thanks to the organising committee, for their time, commitment and passion to make this event happen and without whom this would never have been possible. Also to the players for being a part of this. To everyone who so generously donated auction items. To our many sponsors who’s generosity made it possible for us to do this event to a standard we are all proud of and lastly to the Bellissimo’s who have gone above and beyond in being not only generous hosts but who also put their whole organisation at our disposal.

For more information or to donate please visit: Brooke USA

Thank you to the sponsors of the Inaugural Nic Roldan's Sunset Polo & White Party: Winter Equestrian Festival; Equestrian Sport Productions; Nic Roldan; The Wanderer's Club, Wellington, Fl; Equestrio Magazine; Polo Gear USA; Polo Times; 7ChukkerPolo.com; ChukkerTV; Engel & Volkers, Wellington; Heineken USA; Tito's Handmade Vodka; Herradura Tequila; Copper Cane Wines & Provisions; Josh Sagman & Associates & Luxuria Motor Club

Additionally thanks to: Bolay, PoloLine, pandaHAUS Equestrian, The Meat Market Palm Beach, Chef’s Kitchen and Smokehouse and Ki-Juan Minors.

Partner: http://installmentloansbase.com

December Cover Story for City & Shore Magazine

The December issue of City & Shore Magazine is finally here and I’m so honored to be featured as the cover star! I shared some sneak peek photos back in October when the shoot took place but the final pages are posted below.

Nic Roldan City & Shore

City & Shore Magazine cover featuring Nic Roldan, December 2013

 

If you want to read the story in its entirety be sure to pick up a copy of City & Shore. As an added bonus City& Shore also made a behind the scenes video of me and the team at the barn  … check it out here!

 

 

 

 

2013 USPA National Twenty Goal tournament at the Grand Champions Polo Club

Image of the winning Audi Team line up on the winners podium raising the trophy: L-R Marc Ganzi, Carlitos Gracida, Nic Roldan & Carlos Gracida, Nov 25, 2013,

The winning Audi Team line up: L-R Marc Ganzi, Carlitos Gracida, Nic Roldan & Carlos Gracida

 

This past weekend, Team Audi was victorious again, winning the 2013 USPA National Twenty Goal tournament for the second year in a row!

The final score was 13-7 and I’m proud to say I contributed 5 of those goals, assisting my team in this incredible win against ELG.

My teammate and friend Carlitos Gracida scored the final goal of the match and was awarded MVP.

And you can’t forget about the other athletes on the field, the horses!  Best Playing Pony was awarded to a 7-year old mare on the opposing team named Zulu (although I think my horses deserve a round of applause as well).

For a complete rundown of the game, click here for the full article.

 

Photo Shoot For The Cover of City & Shore Magazine

photo 4

I am so excited about being featured on the cover of City & Shore’s December issue! Being surrounded by the magazine’s professional crew made the shoot particularly fun this weekend.  All six crewmembers came up from Miami to my good friend Kris Kampsen’s barn in Wellington, and the weather couldn’t have been any better.

photo 1

The day was beautiful, but of course we all now that Florida’s heat can sometimes be unbearable. Wearing a one-of-a-kind wool Maus & Hoffman jacket made it that much steamier. I really enjoyed taking some shots with my dog Charlie, and two of my horses: Valeria and Plus.

The issue is set for December, and I’ll post more pics the moment it comes out.  In the meantime, here are a few more candids from that day!

Super Nations Cup 2013- Tianjin, China

Amazing is the only word I can use for my first visit to China. I had such a blast not only playing in the Super Nations Cup, but also seeing such a beautiful country. Unfortunately, my team was not successful in winning the championship, but we were all very happy to be a part of this time when polo is growing so much globally – especially in this region. The Hong Kong, China team was ultimate champion over England in the Finals. It was a very special moment for them and all of China since they were playing on their home turf.

Beijing Airport

Beijing Airport

The U.S. Team

The U.S. Team

Hong Kong VS Argentina

Hong Kong VS Argentina

It was great meeting the locals!

It was great meeting the locals!

A new friend

A new friend

This new experience was exciting and insightful for me.  Not only did I play a sport that I love, but I have made lifelong memories, and learned a lot of new things from China.   I look forward to returning in the future!

Rally For Kids With Cancer Scavenger Cup 2013

The 6th Annual Rally For Kids With Cancer took place on September 20th, 2013, and fortunately I was able to be a part of it again.  This exciting race helped us raise money for the SickKids Foundation, which supports research to improve the lives of children and their families around the world.

This year, the scavenger hunt was held in Toronto, where I was selected to be a part of a great team. The race was fun and challenging, and knowing that we were in this for a great cause made it all the more rewarding.

Team AWIN

Team AWIN

During the event, each team was given a sports car to race around Toronto, and the AWIN team was styling in a beautiful Audi A5!

Let the games begin!

Let the games begin!

The scavenger hunt had us traveling all over Toronto — we even had the chance to search for luggage in one of Air Canada’s planes.  I love a good competition, so out of all of the pit stops, this one was the most exciting.

 

Team AWIN at Pit Stop AIR CANADA

Team AWIN at Pit Stop AIR CANADA

 

Team AWIN at Pit Stop AIR CANADA

The outcome of the event was great, and with hard work, our team took second place! It is great to know I was somehow able to make a positive impact on children’s lives around the world. I cannot wait to be a part of more events like this.

Nothing like seeing the smiles on their faces!

Nothing like seeing the smiles on their faces!

Rally for Kids with Cancer Toronto

Image

On the step and repeat before the big race in 2011.

I am pumped about the 6th Annual Rally for Kids with Cancer Scavenger Cup benefitting the SickKids Foundation in Toronto! I had such a blast participating in the Cup in Miami a couple years ago that I had to do it again. This coming September, I am honored to be a navigator. Paired with the driver of an exotic car (crossing my fingers it’s a Lamborghini Aventador Roadster), we will compete in an “Amazing Race” style scavenger hunt around Toronto. We will start out with a clue that will lead us to a “pit-stop”, like the CN Tower or another Toronto landmarks, where we will have to complete a task to earn the next clue. The tasks are so creative and entertaining, not to mention, they’re all a secret! In Miami, contestants got to swim with dolphins in the Miami Seaquarium and play catch with Miami Dolphins football players. I can’t wait to see what I’ll have to do! The part of the race I am most looking forward to is visiting the Hospital for Sick Children and playing with the kids there. I think it might be time for another “Nic the Tiger” appearance!

Image

I loved hanging with the kids all afternoon. They have such spirit!

The Rally for Kids with Cancer Scavenger Hunt benefits the SickKids Foundation. The Hospital for Sick Children is one of the top four children’s hospitals in the world with world-class patient care, research, education, and advocacy. SickKids Foundation is a charity with a vision to strategically invest in research and training programs that have the potential to improve the health of children across Canada and the world. I am so thrilled to be able to participate in such an exciting event for a great cause.

To donate to the SickKids Foundation, please visit http://www.sickkidsfoundation.com/home/.

Image

Westchester Cup Results- 2013 Audi International Polo Series

On Sunday, July 28th, I captained the USA team against England in the Westchester Cup at Guards Polo Club.  After 16 years of being played in the USA, we were excited to return the series to the UK, where thousands of people came out to watch the match.

(Equus & Co. USA Polo Team Vs. Audi England Team, Images of Polo © www.imagesofpolo.com)

(Equus & Co. USA Polo Team Vs. Audi England Team) Images of Polo © www.imagesofpolo.com

The game was intense and filled with excitement. We were tied 11-11 and went to over-time.  Polito Pieres almost made a winning goal, but his shot was wide and England made the tie-breaking goal to take the Westchester Cup. All was not lost though, the game was well played and I couldn’t have been more proud of my team.

28_07_13_A 428

Images of Polo © www.imagesofpolo.com

After the game, HRH The Prince of Wales gave me the Donoso Trophy for The Best Player from the visiting team. The entire experience was thrilling, and the atmosphere was energetic, and I hope to go back to England to try to win the trophy again soon!

(Myself and HRH The Prince of Wales)

(Myself and HRH The Prince of Wales) Images of Polo © www.imagesofpolo.com

Westchester Cup – 2013 Audi International Polo Series

On Sunday, July 28th, I will compete in the Westchester Cup, one of polo’s oldest and most prestigious cups. It was created in 1886 and is a three game match between the United States and England.   Today, it’s part of the Audi International Polo Series.  This year, I have the honor of representing the USA as captain of the Equus & Co. USA Team as we take on the Audi England team and their captain, Luke Tomlinson. This year’s match will be held at the Guards Polo Club in Windsor Great Park.

What I love most about this match is the history and friendly rivalry behind it. To me, it’s an honor to be able to say I am playing in the same tournament the “Big Four” once played in, in 1909!

The last time the match was played was in 2009 at the Palm Beach International Polo Club. I had the privilege of being on the USA team back then as well, but after a tough game, England took home the trophy. After 16 years of the Westchester Cup being played in the states, it’s time to back to England and win the match!

Image

Prince William, Prince Henry and I looking at polo’s most prestigious trophy, the Westchester Cup! Who will take it home this year?

Image

A picture of the Audi England Captain, Luke Tomlinson, and I.

Check back in for the results of the match!

Charity Event: Celebrity Polo Cup in San Diego

I’m so excited to be the official host of the Celebrity Polo Cup in San Diego this year. The event, which takes place on Saturday, September 14th will benefit one of my favorite organizations, Sentebale. The charity, founded by Prince Harry of England and Prince Seeiso of Lesotho, works with grassroots organizations in Lesotho to help the most vulnerable children get the care and support they need to live healthy and successful lives.

The first polo match of the day will begin at 1 pm, followed by another match at 3pm. After an afternoon of polo, there will be a presentation on the Sentebale charity along with African music and other cultural activities… something you don’t want to miss!

Source: Sentebale.org Prince Harry spending time with the children of Lesotho.

Source: Sentebale.org
Prince Harry spending time with the children of Lesotho.

To purchase a ticket to the Celebrity Polo Cup, click here.

A Dinner Party By BRAVO TV’s Chef Roblé & Co

Last summer, I had the pleasure of filming with BRAVO TV’s Chef Roblé & Co, when he helped me throw a dinner party for a few friends out in the Hamptons.  And I must admit, he can cook a great meal! Upon request, he made one of my family’s favorite meals: Argentine Asado. For those of you who have never had the chance to try the dish, Asado is a classic Argentine barbeque meal.  He even created blood sausage from scratch!

Check out some of the clips below from the premiere of next Wednesday’s episode.  I had a ton of fun filming and getting to know Roblé and his team. I was so pleased with the party and couldn’t be happier about how it turned out. Also, a big thank you to my friend Michael Borrico for allowing us to throw the party at his gorgeous estate.

Click here to watch the previews.

Catch the full episode next Wednesday, June 19th at 10pm on Bravo!

Supporting JustWorld International

I was recently honored to become the first JustWorld International Polo Ambassador. I’ve always been familiar with the non-profit organization that works to fund life-changing nutrition, health, hygiene, education, as well as leadership and cultural development programs for impoverished children in Cambodia, Honduras and Guatemala.

JustWorld International is an established key player in the equestrian philanthropic world, and has been for the last ten years. While they’ve most recognizably had a stance in the show jumping arena, I was eager to introduce them to the polo world, so I signed on with them in January 2013 as their first polo ambassador.

NR JW

This transition into polo will enlarge JustWorld’s footprint on the international front, making huge strides in spreading the word and making a difference in the lives of impoverished children throughout the world by helping to break the cycle of poverty in some of the poorest communities.

Since my signing, I’ve been joined by fellow polo player, Brandon Phillips.  As joint ambassadors, we are eager to encourage the polo world to assist in JustWorld’s mission. Just recently, we raised over $15,000 at the 10th Annual JustWorld International Gala by auctioning off polo lessons and dinner!

We agree that it’s easy to get caught up in our privileged lifestyle, but Brandon and I are passionate about remembering what’s going on in other parts of the world.  Our plan for the future of JustWorld includes spreading awareness through polo tournaments to benefit the charity, donating money won from matches, and traveling to the project sites throughout the world. We also hope to get more players involved!

Check out pictures below from the gala. And stay tuned for more of my work with JustWorld International!

Pard: http://tooloans.com

Faraway Heads to the U.S. Open Quarterfinals

My team, Faraway, is heading into the quarterfinals of the U.S. Open!  Yesterday’s win was an exciting one, the outcome was so uncertain throughout the entire match. Playing for Faraway, we were the underdog going up against Lechuza, who had already won against both Piaget and Orchard Hill.

Image

We strategized; making sure our defense was on point until I scored our only goal in the first chukker. Two chukkers in, we were down 2-1. By halftime I had another goal and so did Lechuza, leading 3-2. Fourth period, Lechuza still led, 5-3. Thankfully, during the fifth chukker I had a penalty shot putting us at 7-4 with still one chukker left to play.

Image

I was proud to assist my team in the final minutes of the game with three consecutive goals, giving Faraway its first Maserati U.S. Open Victory, 8-7.

The game was a great one, I look forward to advancing even further in our next match!