The legacy

1940 – Buenos Aires, Argentina – My father Carlos Miguel Zaballa, at his six years old, he went for first time to the countryside at the “Estancia Loncagua” placed on the train station “Cambaceres” belonging to Nueve de Julio town, property from the family group  Lalor Maguire. He was taken by his uncle Ramon Zaballa manager or butler of the group in Nueve de Julio . Their leader was John Maguire and was a conglomerate of seven Estancias: 1) Loncagua or Loncahué , 2) La Central, 3) Santa Rosa, 4) Santa Maria (at station 12 Octubre), 5) La Rural; 6) El Cacique, 7) San Luis (in the station Dudignac) in 25 de Mayo town.

In the mid 40’s the “Estancias” was divided between family groups, some was for Maguire, one for Patrick Ham and others for the group Lalor.  His uncle was in this group, and became his boss the lawyer Edward Lalor and sometimes his brother Alfredo Lalor (later president of Jockey Club) The group of  “Estancias” that remain are: Santa Maria (as the headquarters), Santa Rosa, La rural, El Cacique and San Luis.

In  Santa Maria Ramon Zaballa lived with his family, under his command was an executive officer, a general foreman, a foreman or responsible for each “Estancia”, a butcher (they kill a cow every two days, there was no refrigerator) a cook, a gardener, a drover, two tamers, a tanner and labourers. For his personal service had: a cook, a maid and a driver.

The Lalor’s played Polo in the team called “La Alicia” and the mares were tamed and prepared by the trainer at the “Estancia” Santa Maria, there my father Carlos Miguel Zaballa, started with the Polo sport and used to ride the mares sent to rest or were injured in games, if they were broke when cured were used for breeding.

Well, after this introduction, my father continued playing amateur polo with friends, at different clubs. This promote on my enthusiasm for introducing me to the polo world. Where I began playing with croquet sticks (I broke the complete set) and a bicycle,  up to start practising on the sides of the court with a real equipment and an old horse.

My perseverance and interest caused that one day, in need of a player I was invited to play for real.


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