Growing up on the family farm in Tuerong, Sam Stott’s passion for horses was instilled at a young age. He began riding ponies at Balnarring Pony Club and Moorooduc Saddle Club, and when he was 17 he began taking part in track work at Mornington Racecourse. From there his rode racehorses for Luke Oliver, worked at Caulfield Racecourse, spent time as a jackaroo in the Northern Territory and took part in rodeos in Queensland.
It was only in 2014, at the age of 22, that Sam fell into polo through a family friend. Within two months he had joined a team at the Garangula Polo Club in NSW to win the 12-goal final. Offered a job by the Packer family at Ellerston, Sam found himself training horses and playing at Ellerston after beginning with the company as a groom and working his way up the ranks. His passion for polo also saw him managing/develop a private five-star polo facility in the Yarra Valley.
Sam continued to climb the ladder every year and jumped a handicap every season. He has won some of the most prestigious trophies around Australia, including Australia’s biggest polo tournament, the Garangula Spring 16-goal tournament. He was in the team that won the first Flinders Polo in 2017 as well as taking out the B Grade at Portsea Polo in 2017 and 2019. In 2016, Sam found himself in New Zealand, making it to the final of the New Zealand Open playing beside some of the world’s best players.
During the off-season, Sam’s horses rest among the beautiful hills in Flinders. A polo team is made up of four riders, and each has six horses. Adding yet another string to his bow, Sam took on the role of retraining a few Peninsula racehorses to become polo horses.
It was while working on a sheep farm six years ago that a film shoot caught his eye. What followed was one of those ‘movie moments’. He was approached by a model on set who asked if he’d modelled before. Sam then found himself in campaigns for Bonds and RB Sellars. Pictured here is his work with photographer Bronwyn Kidd for the Have Horse Will Travel series. The stunning horse that Sam rode in this shoot is BB, his first polo pony. For now, his polo career is on the side as he takes the reins working as a broker at Linx Finance.
Sam invites anyone who wants to try their hand at polo to get in touch via his Instagram account @samcstott