Continuing our sporadic series looking back at highlights from the first year of The Classicist, the weekly column devoted to timeless style, enduring elegance, and true, built-to-last luxury as opposed to mere extravagance, we present the pick of the crop devoted to polo, the sport of kings. Polo is "the original 'extreme sport," as Polistas founder Johnny Lynn told us, and has been played for centuries in a wide range of locales from Mongolia to Persia and India, as we learned from photographer Aline Coquelle's gigantic and brilliant book Polo: The Nomadic Tribe. And though it's undeniably an aristocratic pursuit, more people are getting into the game; some even play it on elephants and snow.
Gallery: The Best of Polo
Snow polo was first introduced in 1985 in Switzerland's swank St. Moritz, and caught on immediately among the bon ton. It's no surprise that swells in equally upscale Aspen, CO decided to stage their own snow polo tournament nine years ago, the World Snow Polo Championships, the only one of its kind in the United States. The tournament recently got some unwanted press when it was discovered that White House party crashers Michaele and Tareq Salahi had scammed the organizers of last year's event. Of course some changes to the game are required for playing on snow. For one thing, the polo ponies are shod with special cleated shoes to provide better traction in the snow, and the ball is larger, lighter, and painted bright red to accommodate winter conditions.
Gallery: Snow Polo