Monty Waterbury Cup
“We are excited to start our 35th season of high-goal polo this summer at Greenwich Polo Club with three of the most prestigious USPA polo tournaments returning to our field this year: the Monty Waterbury Cup, the Butler Handicap and the East Coast Open,” said Peter Brant, founder of Greenwich Polo Club.
The Monty Waterbury Cup is the third oldest official USPA trophy in active competition, named in honor of 10-goal polo immortal James “Monty” Waterbury. A member of The Wanderers polo team, which won polo’s first U.S. Open Polo Championship(r) in 1904, he is also remembered as a member of the USA team known as the “Big Four,” that won five Westchester Cups against Great Britain.
In 1922, two years after his passing, his friends and teammates played for the first Monty Waterbury Cup, at the Meadow Brook Club, in Westbury, Long Island, were it became a perpetual challenge trophy for an impressive 28 year stretch. Historically played for on handicap by teams entered in the Open, the final game for the U.S. Open Polo Championship(r) was also the semifinal game for the Monty Waterbury. The inaugural games in 1922 boasted crowds of up to 20,000 people, who witnessed monumental eight chukker long battles. In 1954, however, the U.S. Open changed venues to Illinois, and the tournament was integrated into the Northeastern Circuit schedule, where is slowly receded into the background until it’s resurgence in 1975.
According to Horace Laffaye in his book “Polo in the United States,” the 1975 revival was spearheaded by Circuit Governor George Haas, Jr., whose Fairfield County Hunt Club won the tournament that year. “Played at Hickox Field, with the final match being held at Bethpage State Park [on Long Island]. George played an inspired polo in this tournament, with plenty of help from Delmar Carroll, Peter Orthwein and Myopia’s Adam Winthrop.”
Previously hosted in 2003 and 2015, this year will be the third time the tournament has been hosted at Greenwich Polo Club in Greenwich, Connecticut. Last year’s Monty Waterbury win by White Birch (Mariano Aguerre, Hilario Ulloa, Santino Magrini and Peter Brant) secured a fourth title for the team, with impressive back-to-back wins the past two years. If White Birch competes again this year and wins, they will be tied for the most Waterbury wins with Maryland based team Gone Away Farm, who dominated in the 80’s and early 90’s, capturing a record five wins.
Monty Waterbury Winners 2016