for Past Horses of the Month
|Horse of the Month for May, 2017
Image courtesy of Marcelo Bianchi
Califa - A Gelding that Loved the Game
Elected 2016 – Polo Museum Horses to Remember
|Bred in Argentina and foaled in 1996 as part of the famed Pieres breeding program, the famous bay gelding, Califa, is owned by Peter Brant of White Birch Farms and has served as a durable war horse for Mariano Aguerre in many memorable contests.
Gathering numerous honors along his way, Califa ultimately earned the Hartman Award for Best Playing Pony after his gritty and intense play in two chukkers under Aguerre at the 2004 U.S. Open Championship.
Aguerre called on Califa again for the 2005 high-goal season and the gutsy gelding didn’t disappoint as they fought together through crucial games helping the team sweep all three 26-goal tournament victories.
A horse of incredible power and stamina, Califa was recognized as the 2006 Horse of the Year, was a member of 2006 APHA U.S. Open best string, 2003 BPP of the Butler Handicap, and the 2004 BPP of the Mercedes Benz Cup.
Photo courtesy of Melinda Brewer
|Having proven himself as a polo superstar and of impeccable breeding (Califa’s dam, La Luna, was a famous polo mare out of Top Secret and Gaucha), the owners realized that cloning Califa would be a way to try to perpetuate his legacy that, being a gelding, he would not otherwise be able to fulfill.
His first clone arrived on April 22, 2010, and is now being successfully played in Argentina.
Califa with Mariano Aguerre up - 2009 Argentine Open
(photo courtesy of American Polo Horse Association)