Emerging polo star Jesse Bray, a native to southern California, was selected as the winner of the USPA Equus & Co. Award and the $10,000 prize that goes with it, which honors the Team USPA player who best exemplifies the program’s principles. The Equus & Co. Award was presented on Sunday, April 13 immediately following the 26-goal U.S. Open Polo Championship quarterfinals at International Polo Club Palm Beach in Wellington, FL.Jesse Bray, Lucas Reid and Will Tankard were all nominated for the prestigious award.
“The three finalists are dedicated to the sport of polo and have worked hard to improve in all areas,” said Team USPA Program Director Kris Bowman in describing this year’s finalists. “Jesse, Lucas and Will are prime examples of the future of American polo. They are the true embodiment of the principles on which Jim Whisenand founded this prestigious award.”
Bray, a 4-goaler who is based in California, has won numerous tournaments around the country. Last summer at the Santa Barbara Polo & Racquet Club, he captured top Best Playing Pony honors in the 12-goal Intra-Circuit Cup with Can-Can and the 12-goal Vic Graber with Antelope, where he also earned the MVP award. He also won the Spreckles Cup at the San Diego Polo Club and finished it off by being selected as winner of the prestigious Willis Allen award, which recognizes the top all-around player, sportsman and horseman under 25 years-old.
The 21-year-old Bray has been on winning teams since 2010, when he was a part of the Eldorado Polo Club team that won the USPA National Interscholastic Championship. Bray is also a four-time winner of the Western Regional Interscholastic Championships.
Good afternoon! I hope this email finds you well and that your year is off to a great start!All is well at the San Diego Polo Club. I’m happy to report that 2013 was a great year for us and that we had a very successful summer. We welcomed over 13,000 spectators throughout the season, with close to 3,000 on Opening Day alone. In addition, more than half of our events supported a non-profit organization and we are hoping to partner with even more charities this season.
We are going through some exciting new changes at the San Diego Polo Club! We have officially welcomed founding member and board member, Chris Collins as the 2014 San Diego Polo Club President. If you read last year’s article, “A Family Legacy” in the San Diego Polo Magazine, you’ll know how influential the Collins Family has been in the history and development of the polo club. We are excited to have him as our President this season!We have also created a Steering Committee this season which will help make important decisions regarding the Club’s direction. I’d like to introduce the members of this group: Julia Samaniego, Joy Bancroft, Chris Maloney, Ellen Greenhill and Krista Bonaguidi. Thank you for all your hard work so far this pre-season.
I think a few of you will be quite pleased to see Heather Chronert back around the San Diego Polo Club this year, acting as Interim General Manager.
New to the team this year, is Event Director, Krista Morrison. I will help Krista get acquainted with our Sunday Polo Events, Social Activities and Members! If you see Krista on Sunday, please introduce yourself.
Our favorite New Zealander and Polo Manager, Graham Bray will be returning this season and has plans to bring in new teams for the summer. He’s actively working with our field managers on improving our fields to make sure our grass is in perfect condition and ready for play come June! Also, be sure to watch for him on Field 1, as he’ll be returning to team StarMeadow again this summer!
We are happy to welcome back Vanessa Shapiro as our Advertising Sales Director for the 2014 San Diego Polo Magazine. Sales are off to a great start and we are hoping to have an even bigger and better publication this year. I cannot wait for all of your to see our beautiful magazine. If you are interested in advertising, send an email to
I am returning this year as the Marketing Director and will continue to maximize our marketing efforts by developing relationships with community leaders, charities, sponsors, media outlets and valuable partners, as well as manage our graphic design and social media marketing. I will also be training our new Event Manager throughout the season and look forward to introducing you to our new team.
You may have noticed that we are starting our summer season one week earlier this year. We will have 15 weekends of polo, so please mark your calendar for the following events:
28th Annual San Diego Polo Season Kick-Off Party on Saturday, May 17, 2014 at 5pm
Opening Day presented by Land Rover of San Diego on Sunday, June 1, 2014 at 1pm
In addition to our 15 Sunday Polo events, we will host a handful of fun social events, including an end-of-the-year Spreckels Party. If you are interested in joining as a Social Member, please reach out to me with any questions.
If you know of a charity that we should partner with, someone that wants to start playing polo, or a business owner that has interest in advertising, please feel free to pass along my contact information. I’ll do whatever it takes to make our 2014 a huge success!
I look forward to seeing each of you on Opening Day!