Created by Alberto Ardissone and Giorgio Brignone, the Agua Alta tournament began 20 years ago as away for their friends to come and enjoy the Careyes Resort located on the Pacific Ocean, south of Puerto Vallarta. Many came from Europe to see the wild west of Mexico and play picturesque polo.
Now, Careyes hosted six 7-9 goal teams with players from around the world, including Portugal, Italy, Colombia, England, Argentina, USA, Brazil, Switzerland, Monaco, Czech Republic, Spain, Peru and Mexico. Two women joined the teams, Lady Martina Lowe and Rebecca Foltz, playing on team Argentina.
Play saw six games take place throughout the week, with all teams playing each other on the two beautiful fields next to the ocean. Taking place the week before Easter, “Semana Santa”, the tournament saw the two teams with the best records advance to play in the finals on April 20th.
The final game was fast and furious, and crowds enjoyed not only the fantastic views, but also the exciting play. In the end, only half a goal separated the winning team from the losing. The two teams facing off in the finals included team Colombia (Juan Martin Cabal, Rodrigo Mosquera, Federico Uribe and Miguel Gomez de Parad). The home team of Agua Alta (Milo Ardissione, Alberto Ardissone, Guillermo Li, Carlitos Hernandez and Kiki Cassanova) lead during the first chukker, with three goals. At halftime, the score was 5-3.5, in favor of Agua Alta. During the third chukker, team Colombia caught up, scoring three goals. Spectators were on their feet cheering for their favorite teams. Team Colombia held onto their lead for the remaining chukkers, winning the game with a final score of 8.5 – 8. High score for the amateurs for the tournament was Manual Matos of the Portugal team and Uribe for the professional. Best playing pony went to Ferrari, an 8-year-old mare owned and played by Milo Ardissione
Trophy presentation, orchestrated by Giorgio Brignone, was festive as he honored all players, sponsors, Umpires Chad Kraml and Matias Baibiene, grooms, and field managers. A one of a kind party was attended by everyone to celebrate the 20th Agua Alta Tournament, a special event for all involved.
This year, sponsors included the Mallet Social Club of Guadalajara, TUCANE and owner Jose Antonio Amutio providing team jerseys, Paralelo 19 and Pedro Verea of the El Careyes Club and Residences, Pulseras Marin, a unique jewelry line, Intercam Bank, Volkswagen Vallarta, Herradura tequila and Jack Daniels. Special thank you to Froylan Caballero of Top Sports & Mexico Polo Tour who was responsible for much of the sponsorships and the large group that came from the MALLET Social Club to enjoy the week of polo and festivities.
The Careyes Polo season will start November 15, 2019.
Please see www.careyes.com