15 April 1975 |
Cañuelas, Buenos Aires Province
|Rank||1 (10-goal handicap)|
|Team||La Dolfina (2000-present)
La Ellerstina (1994-2000)
|Achievements and titles|
|World finals||Abierto de Polo
with La Ellerstina: 1994, 1997, 1998
with La Dolfina: 2002, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2013, 2014
|Highest world ranking||1st|
|Updated on 9 December 2014.|
Adolfo Cambiaso (born April 15, 1975 in Cañuelas, Buenos Aires Province) is an Argentine polo player with a 10-goal handicap. Currently, he is ranked number 1, and considered the best polo player in the world. He is often referred to as Adolfito or Dolfi.
From a young age, his mother Martina de Estrada Lainez, encouraged her son and his half brothers to play polo. By the time he was 12 years old, his handicap reached 1-Goal. A year later, with a 3-goal handicap, he won the Eduardo Heguy Cup with the La Martina team, playing with his father (also called Adolfo). With the San Diego team he won in 1989, at age 14, the Campaña del Desierto Cup, and then a year later the Renault Cup Open with La Martina, reaching a 6-goal handicap.
1990 to 1994
Adolfito travelled abroad regularly, winning 24 tournaments in Argentina, the US and England, while playing for teams like La Martina, Ellerstina/Ellerston White and other. In 1994 he won the "Triple Corona" (Argentine Open, Hurlingham Open, Tortugas Cup) with Ellerstina and was promoted to handicap 10, at that time the youngest player to reach this.
1995 to 1999
2000 to 2004
In this period, Adolfo takes home 33 prizes. He stopped playing for Ellerstina, but became successful with his own team, which won the Campeonato Argentino Abierto de Polo (Argentine Open) in 2002. In England, he started playing for the Dubai team, which won the Queen's Cup three times and the Gold Cup twice among other tournaments.
2005 to 2008
Cambiaso's La Dolfina Team proves to be one of the best teams of the present, after winning the Argentine Open in 2005, 2006 and 2007. In 2005, the team defeated Ellerstina by 20-19, the highest score in an Argentine Open final match. He continues playing for Dubai in England successfully, but also became the team captain for Crab Orchard in the US, winning the US Open and the USPA Gold Cup. 2008 ended as a less successful year after not winning one match in the English polo season and not winning one of the prestigious Argentine tournaments. With La Dolfina he made it into the finals of the Argentine Open, but was beaten by Ellerstina 12-13 after a golden goal by Gonzalo Pieres (jun) in an extra-chukka.
By now, he is considered the best player in the world and is the most successful player in the Argentine Open, taking part 15 times, winning 7 times and played in the final another 2 time. He scored 535 goals in the Argentine Open alone, breaking the record held by Bautista Heguy with 531 goals.
He received several distinctions, among them the Olimpia de Plata award as the most important Argentine polo player of 1997, best player at the final of the Abierto Argentino 1997, and the record of 67 goals, in the 1998 Abierto Argentino. He also plays for the Argentine national team since 2002, when he won the Copa Quilmes.
Of his horses, the most notable were Lili, Ilusión, Sospechosa, La Osa, and his favourite Colibrí. But one of his best polo horses was indeed his world famous stallion Aiken Cura. The horse was seriously injured during the final of the 2006 Argentine Open and has suffered further setbacks in treatment of the broken bone in his near foreleg. The injury happened in the extra chukka and the horse was taken off in the horse ambulance to be treated. It forced Cura's early retirement from the polo field. After amputation a prothesis was fitted but due to complications Aiken Cura had to be euthanized in January 2007. Nowadays his most recognized horses are Mambo, Bruma and Dolfina Cuartetera. As of the 2015 U.S. Open, his best horses are the mare, Romana and the stallion, Boeing, who is known as the "American Pharoah" of the polo world.
A clone of his horse Cuartetera was bought for $800,000 at an auction - making it the most expensive horse sale in polo history.
Adolfo is married to one of South America's noted models, María Vázquez since 2001. He has two children. Mia was born 2002, Adolfo jr was born during the Abierto Argentino 2005, in the middle of a qualifier against Centauros-Beaufort, which his father left half-way through in order to be present at the birth of his first son.
On 24 June 2012, Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II presented Cambiaso with an award commending his pioneering efforts to encourage violence-free training in a country where breaking a horse used to involve pain and distress, as recommended by famed JoinUp pioneer Monty Roberts.
- The thrilling world of polo, Country Life, July 5, 2012
- Biting into the polo mint
- Peak Performance
- Aiken Cura
- http://www.economist.com/news/business/21569054-how-technology-could-transform-ancient-sport-cloney-ponies The business of polo: Cloney ponies
- Interview to Maria Vazquez "a model wife"