PORTRAIT OF A PROFESSIONAL PLAYER: DARIO MUSSO

28 Jun 2022

Winner of the HUBLOT POLO GOLD CUP in 2018, Zurich businessman Cedric Schweri returns to Gstaad for the eighth time with the intention of reclaiming the title he lost in 2019, the year of the last edition of the tournament. While renewing his confidence in the Brazilian Joao Novaes, this year he has called on an Argentine ace, Dario Musso, 44 years old, winner of the Gold Cup in Deauville as well as three times winner of the French Open in Chantilly, he also has three consecutive victories in St. Moritz, St. Tropez and one in the prestigious Copa Remonta Veterinaria in Buenos Aires… to name a few.


Of course, Dario was born into polo, in General Levalle, in the province of Cordoba. There, together with his father Jorge and his younger brother Claudio, he trains young horses in polo, “a family passion“, he emphasizes. His talent was soon spotted by professional players, such as Francisco Braun, who put him on the circuit, especially in Europe where he was pushed by Patrick Guerrand-Hermés and really began his international career in 1995 at the Chantilly Polo Club after a first tournament in Colombia in 1994. From there, he travelled to tournaments in France, Switzerland, Belgium, Italy, Spain (where he started his 2022 season), Germany, India, China and played ten seasons in Thailand: “In fact, I only never went to the United States and England, but thanks to polo, I was able to make all these other great trips.
 
Playing all over the world requires an enormous amount of organization, especially when you need to have good horses: “It starts at home, in Levalle, with our breeding. Three people are in charge of breaking in the young horses, then we train them ourselves. We then select the horses for sale and those that are suitable for me to play. We have about 100 horses in Argentina. The best ones are sent to Europe: at the moment, we have sixteen here, so I always have at least six or eight very good ones to play with!
 
With Dario, Cedric Schweri is doing a “good deal”, because the Argentinean, who has been a 7 goaler*, is now a 5 goaler as he had not been able to play before Covid due to two big leg fractures: “But the pandemic has allowed me to recover and I think I am getting back to my best level of play.” Twenty-four years later, he will therefore be back in Gstaad for the second time in his career: “It’s a beautiful place, the tournament is always very competitive, there are always big teams.” The truth is that it was Joao Novaes who asked him to join Cedric Schweri’s GSTAAD PALACE team this year: “I already had the opportunity to play against them in St. Moritz and St. Tropez, I have a good feeling with them and I’m convinced that the team will perform well, everyone should find their position and Tomas Astelarra, the fourth man, is a very good player. So yes, we come to Gstaad with motivation and I hope we will have a good tournament. Winning? Yes, that’s our goal. We have to reach the final first and I hope that that is what will happen on Sunday.


The first game of the HUBLOT POLO GOLD CUP will be played on Thursday, August 18th at 1:30 pm, the second at 3:00 pm. The second day will be dedicated to the parade of the teams through the streets of Gstaad, a magnificent meeting of polo and Swiss mountain traditions. Same schedule as Thursday for the semi-finals on Saturday while the final will be played on Sunday at 3:00 pm after the game for the third place. The village will open its doors each day at 11:00 am.

 
* The handicap corresponds to the level of the polo player (it varies between -2 and +10). The handicap evolves according to the performance of the player during the games and the progress recorded during the year. The highest handicap in Europe is 7 (England). The very rare handicap 10 is currently held by 9 Argentinians and one Uruguayan.

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