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Pierre-henri Ngoumou

"I must admit with my little superstitions, during the warm-up, I try to know if I am in a good day or not." Is it this superstitious side that Pierre-Henri Ngoumou owes his success ? Either way, he can counts on his spectacular precision, which made him one of France's top polo player. He is dedicated his life to it since 16 years, age at which he stopped his studies to become a professional player. Today, he travels between France, Argentine, the United States and Dubaï to compete in the best tournaments. Wanting to create a real system, he founded his own ranching, starting with 7 Argentine mares, today it counts more than 150 horses.

Hello Kareen,

I think it’s as important as in jumping. You don’t really see it because the match are longer than a jumping show and we play with many horses but to the same level, the player who has the best horse would make the difference, because he’d be able to make game choices than the other couldn’t to do so, he’ll be able to make mistakes and his horse would be able to correct that mistake. I think that the horse makes a huge difference.

PH

Tessy,

Hard question because every horse I’ve had shaped my life. I’ll speak about Cachito because he’s the only one who’s retreated, I don’t know how long he’ll live (I hope as much as possible!) but his career is finished and I love to commend him. He’s from Argentina who’s 20 now! He came from Argentina by boat!! In 2001, horses travelled by flight (14hours of flying) or by boat (3 weeks). That was reserved for hobby horses but not for good polo horses!

He wasn’t made in Argentina for playing polo. That’s a workhorse: he worked in a company who was building roads, he pulled a roller, which packed the road.
That’s an argentine groom who decided to buy an send him to France and finishing his dressage in France.
In October 2001 I’ve met Cachito at Bagatelle at the Polo de Paris and I felt in love. He was in sale but I didn’t have the opportunity to buy him at this moment, that’s so one of my best friend who also plays polo who buys him for himself. A mixed feelings for: glad that he’s to my friend and jealous to not have him.
In march 2017 after long weeks of negotiation I convinced my friend to sell me Cachito. And that’s the beginning of an amazing adventure. We’ve played the most important competition: Silver Coupe , Open de France, Qualification for the championships, tournaments in Switzerland… Everything!
He had the best horse award in the silver coupe at Deauville and also in Switzerland in the Open de Vetay. This horse helped me to improve, winning many matches and even if now I have several good mares, he stills the horse of my life. He’s retreated for one year now, he’s well, he supervises the foals, who’re often more wise than him!!!


PH

Melinda,

Since I exported last year my 20 best mares to Dubai, I have now a new horses batch, which is composed of:

• Apparition, who’s a 6 year old English Thoroughbred that I’ve schooled in my stud farm, she’s my current best mare, she’s got the “best mare” award in Chantilly in May. That’s a mare who’s going to continue to improve and interests many players especially one who’s handicap 10.
• Lady D’Argentel, an English Thoroughbred that I’ve schooled 4 years ago. I didn’t think that she’d play in high level, because I thought she hadn’t the capacities to do so, but with time, she improved and that’s one of the best season’s surprise.
• Sue Breeze is a 17 year old that I’ve brought this year to an other polo player. I’ve ridden 8 years ago, and she was good. I’ve seen her improving during 8 years and I’m glad that she’d play her last match in my stable.

My batch is composed of young horses that we’re schooling in our stud farm in Normandie. This year was a transition year. I’ve had to get a new horses batch for the high level after exporting my best mares to Dubai. That wasn’t easy but today I’m proud, I hope to get even a better one next year.

PH

Rebecca,

I’ve played in the USA from 2006 to 2010 during a 6 months period from October and April and I think that’s one of my favourite place to play. However, Argentina stills the country where you can play the best polo in the best conditions. I don’t have the opportunity to play really often because I played from April to October in Europe and after to the USA and Dubai.

European’s season completes, I think coming back this winter to Dubai. I’m going there for 4 years now and I love being there. I’m also going to play to Nigeria. I’ve played last year for a tournament Africa against the rest of the world (I have Cameroun and Gabon origins). I love playing in Africa and regret to not being here more often than I am.

PH

Dereck,

I sell around 60 horses every year. The market prices can change a lot. It depends on the horse’s level, if it’s for a professional or not. A good high level polo horse costs more than 20 000€.

PH

Kareen,

That’s not an easy question because every tournament and club have pros and different atmosphere. I’ve had the chance to play at SotoGrande this summer in August and I have to confess that I’ve never seen something like it:

• An amazing organisation
• A sports fields high quality
• A passionate public
• A really good players tournament. There was 4 players and that’s really nice to play your match and after seeing the best players of the world gaming.
I recommend to every polo player to come to participate to the tournaments proposed by Polo de Deauville in August. Deauville is unique! A partying atmosphere, every morning horses are training on the beach, there’s a possibility to play match on the beach, and polo tournaments are in the middle of a huge high-level racetrack. Deauville is the horses’ city, more in August between polo tournaments, horses races and yearling auctions, that’s magic.
The parties are really nice because captains organise often parties, the BROK CAFÉ is a must to go in Deauville they switch on the polo match etc. TOP!
There’re other places I love as Polo club de Chantilly, which is the biggest in Europe and offers good level polo match from April to October on 9 amazing fields.

PH

Adeline,

This year, I’ve had many good moments but the 2 best ones are:
• A match at Apremont, that was the semi-final of a tournament with HECLA team, we were losing the match of a half goal, and there was 48 seconds left, with a cleaning for us. I was riding my best mare at the moment, Apparition, a young horse that I’ve beginning with 2 years ago, and that was her first big tournament. I started and went through the field and sneaked between the players and then went faster put the victory’s goal just few seconds before the end of the match! We went to the final and won the tournament. I was really happy and proud of the mare for who I lived the love at the first sight 2 years ago et she surpsises me every day.
• A match at Saint Tropez against Gonzalo Pieres, one of the 6 best players in the world. We were losing of a half goal at it was less than 1 minute before the end of the match. We had one penalty for us, 60 yards, and I had the responsibility to shoot and GOAL!!!! And we won the match. We were often asking me if I was stressed when shooting this ball and for the story: I hadn’t looked at the stopwatch correctly, and I thought we had 1min15, not 15 seconds! I so shot this penalty without stress because I was saying to myself he had 1 min yet to shoot.. I don’t think I’d shoot if I knew we had only 15 seconds lol

PH

Amy,

Without hesitating Adolfo Cambiaso! But I’m still fascinated by so many players as Facundo Pieres, Juan Martin Nero, Pablo Mac Donough.

My “dream team” I think the Dolfina as it currently is, is a perfect team but I don’t see a dream tem without Facundo Pieres so I would say:
• Facundo Pieres
• Pablo Mac Donough
• Adolfo Cambiaso
• Juan Martin Nero

PH

Mark,

A traditional horse polo training is:

• Rest from October to March outside
• Work March / April
• Competitions from Mai to September
To my opinion, 6 months without activity is too long, and the work too short. More, 70% of my horses are English Thoroughbred and they’re “weak” horses, who’re losing muscls quickly, and they’re sensitive to some harms during winter. Since we have the Houlley stud farm, horses are in the box during wintertime, and change between paddock and horse walker.

PH

Lauren,

Hard question, I love playing with every team. I’ve had the chance to play with the best French team: In the Wings, Talandracas, La Quinta, Paprec, Très Marias, Lynx, La Esperanza, Mochi Chic and many other. Every team is different and I always felt good in those teams. I love learning and playing with better players than me (that’s the best way to me to improve). I’ve played with really good players as Juan Martin Nero, Lucas Monteverde, Pablo Mac Donough, Polito Pieres, Pancho Bensadon, Olavo Novaes, Dario Musso, Tito Ruiz Guinazu. I hope that I’ll continue to improve myself by their sides. I want to thank all those professionals who gave me those opportunities.

PH