Siam Polo Newsletter

28 December 2003

Volume I - Summary.

Sponsored by KING POWER

This is a Summary of 2003 newsletters.

Welcome to the newsletter for Horse Polo in Thailand.
Map to the Polo Club
Contact Siam Polo Manager
List of Hotels near the Polo Club

Thailand King's Cup Finals at Siam Polo Park -- 01 Feb 2004 // Cambiaso and Lolo will be playing in this exciting tournament featuring teams from Thailand, Dubai, England and Germany
Thailand Polo King's Cup 2004 -- 27 Jan to 01 Feb
Last year's annual King's Cup was a very exciting event featuring Adolfo Cambiaso and his teammate Lolo and some other very good players from Argentina. Thailand defeated Germany by a narrow victory in the final moments. This year's King's Cup promises even more excitement with 4 teams (with 12 goal handicaps) from Thailand, Dubai, England and Germany. The final will be on 01 February 2004. 
Thailand vs England
Result: Thailand 12 - England 5
Tuesday - 27 Jan 2004 (3:00pm)
Dubai vs Germany Thursday - 29 Jan 2004 (3:00pm)
Two losing teams play-off Saturday - 31 Jan 2004 (3:00pm)
Ladies Polo and  Sunday - 01 Feb 2004 (2:00pm)
Elephant Polo 
Thailand vs Argentina
Sunday - 01 Feb 2004 (2:30pm)
King's Cup Finals Sunday - 01 Feb 2004 (3:30pm)
Khun Vichai Raksriaksorn organizes this tournament (sponsored by King Power and the Thailand Equestrian Polo Association) to promote polo in Thailand. Everyone is welcome for free. This is the best polo in Asia featuring some of the best players in the world. It is your chance to come and meet these players and learn from them. Some of the players -- Cambiaso, Lolo, Jamie Gordon, Jamie Le Hardy, Robert Thames, Andrew Hine, Ali Albwardy, Najeeb, Sayeed, Gustavo Yanez, Eric Barthe, Khun Vichai, Khun Top, Mr. Link and TBC German team members. If you have any questions about this tournament, please call Khun Niphon -- Bangkok 02+6580093. See you there! 

King's Cup Poster 2004

Good News to share about Siam Polo in Argentina. This year King Power sponsored 10 polo tournaments in Argentina, and here are the results of some of the tournaments. Pictured here is the King Power polo team with Khun Vichai, Gustavo and Juama playing in the Ellerstina Silver Cup.
Cup Name Result Note
Andres Gazzotti (16 goal) win Gustavo played
Metrapolitano Alto (24 goal) win Gustavo and Juan Manuel played
Remonta y Vetenaria (24 goal) win Juan Manuel played
Ellerstina Silver second Gustavo and Vichai played. Ton replaced him after a fall in the final.
La Picaza King Power (24 goal) win Juan Manuel played
King Power (14 goal) win (10-8) Gustavo, Vichai, Ton and Eric played. 
Palermo Open (open) second (10-12) Lost to La Aquada in the final. Very exciting semi-final. 
Interview with Cabeza -- Gustavo Yañez
Gustavo Yañez has returned to Thailand after spending 5 months in Argentina playing polo. He arrived in Argentina on the 29th of July 2003 - the same day as the birth of his second daughter, Camila. Gustavo has been involved with polo in Thailand since the very early days about 6 years ago. He has seen the sport grow from a dusty arena to a sprawling magnificent polo park. As manager of the Siam Polo Park, he has done much to bring the unique Argentine talent and knowledge of the sport to Asia. This past year was his first opportunity to return to Argentina to play very competitive polo in some important tournaments sponsored by King Power. It has been his dream for many years to try to increase his handicap. Polo players in Argentina are usually sponsored by their families, but Gustavo is unique in having King Power to support him. Gustavo is very grateful to Khun Vichai for his support and encouragement. "He is a good family man. He trusts me like his family. He has taught me many things: Business, Trust your customer, Family - go everywhere together, and Polo - Win! The honor of winning. When I play with him, I play more. He says the same about me. We give each other confidence." Three years ago, no one knew about polo in Thailand; now, everyone knows. King Power won more than 10 tournaments in Argentina this year. The dream of every polo player in the world is to play with Cambiaso. In the King's Cup, Gustavo will be playing with Cambiaso and Khun Vichai. We asked him what tactics he would use during this opportunity of playing with Cambiaso. His answer, "Take people out and let him play!"

Gustavo Yañez in Argentina

Player Interview - Khun Ton
Apichet Raksriaksorn (Nickname: Ton). Age 21. Currently a third year student at Oxford (Brookes College) in England. He is majoring in Marketing. Ton started playing polo at age 18. He used to ride dressage with his family, then his father changed to polo and encouraged him to try the sport. Ton enjoys football, reading and snooker. He likes polo, because it is a combination of the ball skills in golf, the contact and scoring of football, and the speed of horse or motor racing. He recently accompanied his father to Argentina for the Palermo Open. It was Ton's first trip to Argentina; he found it nice and relaxing, but when you play polo there, it is very serious. He played three days (6 chukkas each day) in the King Power Cup tournament at #1. In Thailand, the #1 gets the goals, but in Argentina, my job was to take out their man, so my teammates could get goals. The game of polo has taught me to "obey the rules," otherwise people can get hurt. It is also a great sport for meeting people from other parts of the world. The one thing I have learned from my father is that when you are a beginner, use your head first, because your skills are not that good. Playing smart can make up for a lack in skills. 

Kuppa Polo Team
Khun Robin (Jertjun Lourvanij) and Khun Suzy (Supanee Lourvanij) are the newest members at Siam Polo Park. Robin recently brought her daughter, Khun Pat (Panita Vongkusolkit), to the club for the first practice of the Kuppa Polo Team. Robin is the MD of Kuppa Restaurant on Soi 16 in Bangkok. Seven years ago, she started a company to make the best coffee in Bangkok, and now she has one of the best restaurants. Robin is a mother of 3, and she feels that if you are interested in anything, then it is not difficult. Her sister, Suzy, is the MD of ACT Leather which manufactures leather furniture for export. Robin's daughter, Khun Pat, is 14 years old. She is a student at St. Mary's all girls school in Perth. This was her first time playing polo. It was more difficult than she thought, but not as scary as it looks. She thinks that polo teaches you balance - not just in sport, but in life. Her favorite proverb is "Nam Ning Lie Look" (still waters run deep). "Not many people know me, and I like it that way." This Kuppa team will be something to watch in the future.

Lady Polo Players
One of the highlights of the King's Cup Tournament this year will be the Ladies Exhibition Match played before the King's Cup Finals on Sunday - 01 February 2004 (2:00pm). Khun Mimi (Usayos Vongsuksiri) has been seen quite regularly at the club practicing for this year's match. Mimi is a buyer for King Power Duty Free, and her passions are traveling and sport. She was introduced to polo 4 years ago by Khun Aktanai, and she feels the most important thing when playing is to "look at the ball" (because Gustavo told her to do this). Her favorite shot is the off-side backhand; it doesn't mean she can do it, but she likes it. One of Mimi's interests is Bikram Yoga. This involves 26 different positions during 90 minutes in a room that is 38*C. It is hard work, because you have to concentrate and stay still; you forget everything and it is good for your mind. Mimi's interest in sport has taught her discipline and how to push her limits. There will be a collection of ladies playing in the King's Cup Exhibition Match this year, including Khun Apple (wife of the famous Thai polo player, "Eric Butter," who has changed to British nationality just for this tournament), Khun Nuntinee, Khun Robin, Khun Suzy, Assunta Link, Khun Tim and Gustavo's wife, Maria Power. This promises to be a very competitive and amusing event.

This year, there are two new visitors at Siam Polo. The Falabella is a breed of miniature horse from Argentina. These tiny horses are too small to be ridden, but they are fun for children to pet and to become familiar with horses. (we will let you know more about this unique breed of horse shortly...) More information on Falabella.

Visiting Polo Player
Jamie Woodward and his daughter. Jamie was recently seen at the Siam Polo Field with his wife and daughter (and fourth family member on the way). Jamie also had a new assortment of polo sticks in his bag. He wasted no time in showing everyone that he has not been getting soft in his office in Bangkok... (more coming as soon as we catch up with Jamie by telephone)
Polo People 
Dara Williams is a regular visitor to the Siam Polo Park. She is a news writer for Polo Times, and she loves to write about polo in Siam. Her passions are traveling and fashion, and before she was writing about polo, she was writing about fashion. "The secret to dressing is to wear what you feel comfortable in. You have to find your style," she says. Last year, Dara was wearing a Chinese dress at the King's Cup, but this year, she will be wearing cream linen trousers with a smart top and a nice belt. The belt is very important. Dara feels that hats are out this year. Instead, ladies will be wearing designer sunglasses. She predicts that most of the females will be dressed "casual-chic" - simple things and a nice natural look. Her favorite polo player is Cambiaso, because she likes his style. We asked her if she had any ideas what he might be wearing during the tournament. She smiled and said, "a King Power t-shirt, I suppose." Dara is a member of Guards Polo Club and Cowdray Park in UK. 

Khun Pat, Maria, Toy, and Carolina at the Kuppa dinner at the clubhouse after polo. This dinner featured blueberry cheesecake and brownies for desert. Notice all the smiles as the desert is being sampled.

Rules of Polo

Polo has many rules. In each newsletter, we will share with you a different rule, penalty or picardia (trick) to increase your understanding of the game.
"Corner and 60 yard hit"
When the defending player hits the ball sending it over the back line, and the ball is clearly out, this is called a "corner." It is also a corner, if the defending player hits the ball, then ball hits his own horse, and then goes over the back line. In the corner situation, the defending team has to protect the goal, and to try to prevent the possible goal. The defenders player 4 and 3 will be on the back line in the goal mouth. The players 1 and 2 position themselves to try to stop the ball (at least 30 yards from the ball). The attackers: One of the players has to give one hit and only one hit at the ball from a spot 60 yards and from the same point where the ball went over the back line. The attacking players 1 and 2 has to put their horses on either side of the goal post to attempt to redirect the ball into the goal if it is hit wide. The attacking number 3 has to position his horse near the ball if the number 4 has not hit it properly, so that he may attempt to carry it to the goal. The main point to remember here is that the attacking hitter (number 4) can only hit the ball once (or hit at the ball). He cannot tap it towards goal. The number 3 either has to be behind him to follow up his miss hit, or in front of him to receive a hit that is not all the way towards goal. The number 3 has to use good judgment in this situation. This same technique is used by the attacking team on the 60 yard penalty hit.
Contributed by Marco Focaccia -- 

La Dolfina King Power wins the Argentina Open 2003 at Palermo
Very exiting news! Khun Vichai's “King Power” sponsored La Dolfina at Palermo Open this past December in Argentina and won. Adolfo Cambiaso, Lolo Castagnola, Sebastian Harriot and Juan Roman came from Argentina to Thailand to play the "King's Cup 2003" exhibition match and club chukkas with members. The Exhibition match was Thailand against German resulting in Thailand’s victory. 

Siam Polo in England
This past summer, after the end of the season at Siam Polo Park, Siam Polo Park was invite to play in Ham Polo Club in England. They were also was invited to play at Inglesham Polo Club against Norway. There were two team areas (zones): A (8 goals Thailand and 9 goals Norway) and B (0 goal Thailand and 2 goals Norway). Thailand A players - Vichai Raksriaksorn, Marco Focaccia, Jamie Le Hardy and Gustavo Yanez - won 6 ½. Thailand B players - Tal Raksiaksorn, Tarig Albuwardy, Eric Barthe and Harlad Link - the Norway B won 2 ½ - 0. 

Siam Polo in Germany
Khun Harald Link had an invitation to participate in the German Polo Masters 12 goals tournament, joining him were Andrew Hine, Santos Anca and Klaus Buchamann (after replaced by Britta), and they came back with the Brahmfeld and Gstruf Cup. This season. The date open season took place this last November the 1st, with some chukka played between the members, followed by an excellent dinner consisting of the meat Asado typical from Argentina, courtesy of Khun Harald Link, the chairman at Siam Polo Club.


The New Gauchos
The activities following with training horses, tournaments in the weekends, classes for the beginners and practice for them and so on. Also we have this season, two new Argentine polo professionals at the Club: Nicolas Pieroni and Federico Rosales. Nicolas is from Rio IV, Cordoba, Argentina. He has 2-goal handicap and has been playing polo for 11 years. Federico, is from Villa Dolores, Cordoba, Argentina. He is 19 years old. He has 2-goald handicap and has been playing polo for 12 years. Gustavo Yanez and Marco Focaccia used to be his teachers when he started play polo. 


Elephant Polo in Thailand -- Chivas Regal vs. Thailand Nokia King's Cup Elephant Polo
This year's September Elephant Polo Tournament in Hua Hin was a great success with 12 teams competing and raising over 1.5 million Baht for the elephant conservation center in Lamphang. The two Thai teams finished in 4th and 5th place. Khun Bib, the captain for Thailand American Express, received the MVP trophy for the tournament. This was Khun Aktanai's first year of elephant polo, and he was captain of Thailand Nokia. On the morning of the first day, the large male tusker Umpire elephant charged Khun Tom's small elephant and knocked off his mahoot, then the two elephants charged off the field into the forest. Khun Tom jumped off and was given a different elephant. Khun Aktanai looked at him and said, "I thought you said this was safe." 
Gustavo Update
Gustavo Yanez, the manager of the Siam Polo Park in Thailand, is in Argentina, because he is playing some tournaments - Andres Gazzotti (A) and General Necochea (H) Cups. 
La Picaza King Power team: Carlos Marcelo Marro (0), Javier Guerrero (5), Juan Manuel Echeverz (6), Gustavo Yánez (3). Total 14. 
La Picaza King Power: Diego White (6), Juan Manuel Echeverz (6), Michel del Carril (6), Tomás Lalor (6). Total 24. 
La Picaza King Power (24) beat Sol de Agosto (24) 6 to 2, finishing in the first position in the Campaña del Desierto Cup. 

Cabeza Grande

Siam Polo in Argentina with King Power
Khun Vichai will sponsor La Dolfina King Power in three important polo tournaments in Argentina this year.
In HURLINGHAM La Dolfina King Power reached to the semifinal. 
In TORTUGAS COUNTRY CLUB OPEN La Dolfina King Power arrived to the final and lost for one goal between La Aguada. Adolfo Cambiaso was replacing in the third chucker due an injury in his left leg. 
In PALERMO OPEN, the first date La Dolfina King Power 22 vs. El Metejon 16. The second date Ellerstina 14 vs. Indios Chapaleufu 13. The third date was postpone King Power due to bad weather. 

Siam Polo Social Scene
Khun Bib and Khun Billy stopped by after their sailing excursion last weekend. Khun Billy is learning how to play polo at the moment. He brought some brownies, but he really wanted to test Khun Robin's Kuppa brownies.

Khun Eric takes his daughter Saranya for a ride. Eric is the famous Thai polo player and exclusive manufacturer of "Barthe Boots" for Thailand polo ponies. He has a very special design for these boots.

Rules of Polo

Polo has many rules. In each newsletter, we will share with you a different rule, penalty or picardia (trick) to increase your understanding of the game.
"Line of the Ball"
The line of the ball is the line of its course or that line produced at any moment. When the line of the ball changes and as a result the Right of Way changes, a player must be allowed the necessary time to clear the new Right of Way. A player clearing that Right of Way may make no offensive or defensive play in doing so. If in the process of clearing the line pony kicks the ball, this is not considered making a play. When a dead ball has been put in to play through being hit at and missed, the line of the ball is considered to be the direction in which the player was riding when he hit at it. If the ball becomes stationary while remaining in play, the line of the ball is that line upon which it was traveling before stopping.
Contributed by Marco Focaccia -- 
Blue Book VCD - Khun Tom has free VCD copies of the U.S.P.A. Blue Book "Rules for Polo" for all club members, gauchos and friends. This is a very good video instruction on the rules of polo and an excellent way to learn how not-to-foul. If you would like a free copy of this VCD, please email Khun Tom (or call 090922711).
Next Issue
Carolina is planning an exclusive interview with Siam Polo Park's newest members -- Khun Robin and Khun Suzy -- from the very trendy and delicious Kuppa Restaurant on Sukhumvit Soi 16 in Bangkok. The club members and the gauchos love these girls, because they know that "brownies, cheese and wine" are the best way into a polo player's heart. Don't miss this interview! 

Blue Book VCD
Tom has free VCD copies of the U.S.P.A. Blue Book "Rules for Polo" for all club members, gauchos and friends. This is a very good video instruction on the rules of polo and an excellent way to learn how not-to-foul. If you would like a free copy of this VCD, please email Tom (or call 090922711).

Siam Polo Calendar

Upcoming polo events at the club. Submit event dates.
December 10 - 14 Reggie Ludwig polo clinic at the club
December 20? Palermo - King Power sponsoring La Dolfina in the Argentine Open. Date unconfirmed due to rain.
February 01 King's Cup - best polo players in the world. Teams from Dubai, Germany, England, and Thailand. 12-15 goal tournament.
February  American polo team visit. Date to be confirmed. 
February (last week) Teams from Malaysia and Philippines will come for friendly chukkas.
April 04 Khun Vichai Birthday Cup
March - April Visit from Hamburg Polo Team from Germany and Team from Ham Polo Club in England. Date to be confirmed.
upcoming B. Grimm Cup
upcoming King Power Gold Cup - end of season
upcoming Eric's Ball Chaser Cup - last year winner Khun Aktanai

Horses Available

at the club for sale or rent. Questions: call Marco - 070108227 or email.

Horse Age / Character Sale / Rent Owner Contact
Polla 8-9 / spirited Sale SPP-Marco 070108227
Naranja 8-9 / spirited Sale SPP "
Pitufa 8-9 / small, strong heart Sale SPP "
Salvatierra 8-9 / big, strong Sale SPP "
Anquita ? / wonderful, strong. Sale Jim 018268936
Gitano ? / ? Rent Peter 018266754
Cleo ? / ? Rent Peter "

Other Links

International Rules of Polo Polo Line (latest scores)
Grooms and Staff at the Club Argentine Polo Horses
Aerial photo of the Polo Field Argentine Polo Sticks
  5-Day weather forecast for Pattaya area

Manager at Siam Polo Park
Marco Focaccia is at this moment the one who runs the Club because Gustavo will come back in January. You can contact him by email: or by mobile: 019403243.

My name is Carolina Salvador, and I am the editor for the Siam Polo Newsletter. If you have any information for the next issue of this newsletter please send to my email: or call my mobile: 070108227.

Webpage designed by Tom Claytor