Varsity Polo Oxford Winners (lr) George Pearson, Vere Harmsworth, Louis Maddison, Charlie Hitchman
Story by Diana Butler Guards Polo Club Photography by GaBriel Lovas
The UK’s oldest polo match – first contested in 1879 – The Varsity Polo match was fiercely contested Saturday 4 June 2016 as Oxford and Cambridge polo teams took to the field at Guards Polo Club to fight it out for the La Martina Varsity Trophy.
Oxford University stormed to victory with a 19-0 win over rivals Cambridge, securing the trophy for a consecutive year. Both teams featured La Martina ambassadors including George Pearson and Vere Harmsworth for Oxford, and Ben Lawrence for Cambridge. It was a compelling battle for the prestigious accolade of winning the intensely contested competition, which also featured teams from Harvard and Yale, as well as the Old Blues from both the Varsity sides. Another win for the city of Oxford saw Oxford Old Blues secure a victory over their challengers Cambridge Old Blues with a closer game finishing 7-6, and trans-Atlantic guests Harvard earned a more than comfortable win against their rivals Yale, with a final score of 7-1.
The Oxford & Cambridge University Varsity teams recently came together at La Martina’s flagship store in London; joining Lando Simonetti, founder of La Martina and Neil Hobday, CEO of Guards Polo Club, to celebrate a new five-year sponsorship agreement. This innovative contract also sees La Martina sign a worldwide licensing deal with the Oxford and Cambridge polo teams.
Lando Simonetti of La Martina said: “We are focused on promoting the integrity, sense of honour and sportsmanship that’s at the heart of the sport to young polo players and their peers. So to be able to expand our partnership with Guards Polo Club by supporting Oxford and Cambridge Varsity Polo is a momentous occasion for us. We see this as the first step in a long and successful alliance.”
The next Varsity Polo competition between these two university rivals will take place in the summer of 2017.