PORTRAIT – The young Parisian is already roaming around juggling multiple responsibilities. She wants to take advantage of the competition to shine among the best.
From the top of her 22 years, Elena Venot delivers the resplendent and modern image of a young polo champion. Surprise to be approached on the eve of the Polo Rider Cup – “The most important tournament I have ever played” – to share the time of a conversation his passion for horses and his sport. Too happy, the young woman lets herself be carried away by the enthusiasm and ardor when she talks about the game. “Nana”, as she is nicknamed in the community, is today the best ranked Frenchwoman (handicap 1 mixed & 6 ladies).
“I have been passionate about horses and polo since I was little, she explains, I had the chance to start very early. I have been impregnated for twenty years. My whole family has the same virus, and we all devote a lot of our time to it. I manage our small private stable made up of our competition horses and young horses in training, in addition to my studies and my schedule as a player. ”
Elena has quite a character. And a huge desire to succeed. Her LinkedIn profile, which presents her first as an equestrian center manager, leaves no room for doubt. This Parisian of the 15e arrondissement does not want to choose between its different occupations. Engaged in the course of her engineering school (Skema business school) until 2023, she intends to carry out her studies, her sports career and her personal life. A legitimate ambition for a young woman rooted in her time, who has her whole life ahead of her.
I have to plan a schedule that allows me to be at the top level both at school and on a polo field. Being both a professional player and present in working life.
“I want to continue to improve at the mixed level. I have less time to work than other students but I am motivated to combine my studies and my passion. I have to plan a schedule that allows me to be at the top level both at school and on a polo field. Later, I would like to work while continuing to practice my sport at a high level. Being both a professional player and present in working life. ”
Within the Polo Angels, the team formed with his two sisters Lucie (20 years old, h. 0 & 4) and Pearl (18 years old, h. 0 & 4), as well as with the former world number 1 Caroline Anier (h. 1 & 4), she won the French Ladies’ Open on the grounds of the Polo Club de Chantilly in 2020. “It’s fantastic to be able to practice together. The three of us are having incredible experiences. ” Renowned physical, the polo shirt seemed for a long time to be more reserved for men, mallet in hand. Fortunately, times have changed. And the players share their passion more and more with male partners in a sport which seems totally adapted to the mix.
“Breaking the conveniences”
“The polo shirt had until recent years an essentially masculine image, confirms Elena Venot. However, women’s polo has developed strongly over the past half-dozen years under the impetus of independent, voluntary women thirsty for success. Modern women who have not hesitated to break the conventions. These players are entrepreneurs. Whether they are amateurs or professionals. I know captains, business leaders, who have taken the risk of dedicating their lives to this sport. ”
At the head of a stake of confirmed horses, Elena is already prowling herself juggling multiple responsibilities. This year, the Polo Rider Cup will be an opportunity to attract attention and shine among the best.
Within the Swiss formation Polo Park Zürich, it will be aligned alongside American captain Richard Harris (h. 0), Argentinian Carlos Solari (h. 4) and his compatriot Min Podesta (h. 7), l one of the stars of the event, who is one of the best players in the world.
“I still can’t believe I had the opportunity to play in the middle of this team, it’s a dream. Min Podesta is 7, he is an extraordinary player. I am far from his level. I’m going to have incredible moments trying to show myself worthy of being with them ”, concludes Elena Venot, impatient to be in the saddle, galloping off to conquer the first edition of the Polo Rider Cup.