Feb 10, 2021

Poggio II (1992-2021)

By Jessica Duffy - USEA Staff
Poggio II and Amy Tryon. USEA Archives Photo.

The USEA is sad to share the news that Poggio II (Polynesian Flyer x Waves Club), a Thoroughbred gelding ridden by the late Amy Tryon and owned by Dr. Mark Hart, passed away on February 9, 2021 at the age of 29.

"Oh, the places Poggio showed us," stated Greg Tryon, Amy's husband, in a touching tribute to Poggio on Facebook. "Traveling across the U.S. and Canada. From the West Coast to small towns in Pennsylvania and the rest of the Eastern seaboard. A passport that would take us on journeys through England, Ireland, Scotland, Spain, Greece, Germany, and China. All to return home to small towns in Washington State to live a life with his miniature donkeys."

"Sitting in his stall that last evening, surrounded by some of those who have loved and taken care of him over the years, was both tough and peaceful," Greg said. "There were tears, and there was laughter. I promised him his forelock would never have to be braided again, no dreaded dressage as the courses would only be cross-country and show jumps. I noted, of course, he could jump them in whatever particular order he chose, as he was wont to do anyway. Most importantly, Mom would be waiting for him with open arms and an endless supply of Mrs. Pasture’s cookies."

Poggio II was bred by Thoroughbred race trainer Thomas Hunt and raced as a 2-year-old under the Jockey Club name Chesterstimetoofly at tracks in the Pacific Northwest. After lackluster results on the track, Poggio was sold to be a pack horse, carrying camping gear and other equipment up and down the Cascade Mountains.

Tryon saw a sale ad for Poggio in the newspaper in 1997 and, intrigued by his bloodlines, purchased him with her friend, Janet von Pressentin, for $2,500. A week later, Tryon traded a horse on her farm to von Pressentin for Poggio. He was in bad shape when she got him, but as she began the process of retraining him, she discovered his talent for jumping.

Poggio II and Amy Tryon competing at the Kentucky Three-Day Event. USEA Archives Photo.

By the spring of 1998, Poggio and Tryon were competing at the Preliminary level. They moved up to the Intermediate level over the summer, and that entire year only finished outside the top three one time. At the end of the year, they won the long-format CCI2* (now CCI3*-L) at the Radnor Hunt International Three-Day Event.

In 1999, Poggio began to compete at the Advanced level with Tryon. They completed their first long format CCI3* (now CCI4*-L) at Punchestown in May and were named to the squad that competed at the Pan American Games in Winnipeg, Canada, finishing fourth individually.

Back at the Advanced level in the spring of 2000, Poggio and Tryon made their first trip to the Kentucky Three-Day Event CCI4* (now CCI5*-L), although they ultimately withdrew from the competition. They tried again in 2002, and this time finished in third place. 2002 was also when Dr. Mark Hart, a good friend of Tryon and her husband Greg, came on board as an owner.

Dr. Mark Hart (left) and Allyson Green, Poggio's groom, (center) with Poggio at the 2008 Olympics. USEA Archives Photo.

Later that year, Poggio and Tryon traveled with the U.S. team to Jerez de la Frontera, Spain to compete in the 2002 FEI World Equestrian Games and came home as members of the gold medal-winning team.

In 2003, Poggio was seventh in the CIC3* (now CCI4*-S) at Galway Downs and had a light spring and summer season before trekking across the pond to compete in the Burghley Horse Trials CCI4* (now CCI5*-L), where they finished in 17th place.

With their eyes on a trip to Athens in 2004, Poggio and Tryon competed at Kentucky for the third time, finishing in 11th place. The 2004 Olympics were held in the new short format, without roads and track and steeplechase on endurance day. Poggio and Tryon finished sixth individually and as members of the bronze medal-winning team.

Poggio II and Amy Tryon at the 2004 Olympics. USEA Archives Photo.

The following year, Poggio and Tryon made their fourth trip to the Bluegrass State to compete in the Kentucky CCI4*, this time finishing in 10th place. In 2006, aiming for their second World Equestrian Games performance, they finished seventh in the CIC3* (now CCI4*-S) at The Fork and traveled to Kentucky for the fifth time but withdrawing before cross-country to save Poggio’s legs for the WEG. While the U.S. Team finished fourth overall at the Games, Poggio and Tryon took home the individual bronze medal.

Now 15 years old, and with the plan to make the Olympic team in 2008, Poggio had a light year in 2007, traveling to the East Coast to compete at Jersey Fresh, where they were 17th in the CCI3* (now CCI4*-L). In the spring of 2008 Poggio and Tryon finished ninth in the CIC3* (now CCI4*-S) at The Fork before traveling to England, where they were 30th in their final prep run for the Olympics at Barbury Castle. Then, Poggio and Tryon went on to represent the U.S. at the Olympic Games a second time.

Mark and Poggio, enjoying his retirement to the fullest! Photo courtesy of Mark Hart.

Following his second Olympic appearance, Poggio II retired from competitive eventing. Not being fond of other horses, Tryon got Jethro, a miniature donkey, who stayed with him from that time on. Poggio lived out his final days with Dawn Dofelmier, his farrier, and her husband Jon. "She took wonderful care of him," Hart said. "Dawn loved him to death and provided incredible care for him."

Jethro and Poggio II in retirement. Amy Tryon Photo.

“When Greg (Tryon) reached out last night to let me know Poggio was gone, it brought back a flood of wonderful memories," said Hart. "It is amazing how these incredible horses can capture our hearts and become such important parts of our lives. Poggio brought so many special people together - he took me and all of his connections on an incredible journey including two Olympic Games and two World Equestrian Games (with two team medals and an individual medal) that we could have never imagined. He was a unique horse that wildly exceeded expectations in every way. The process of being part of Poggio’s team as a co-owner and watching his development brought as much joy and excitement as his larger international accomplishments. I find comfort in my belief that Poggio and Amy are now galloping together with no restraints.”

The USEA extends our heartfelt condolences to Dr. Hart, Greg Tryon, and all of Poggio’s connections and fans.

Feb 02, 2023 Eventing News

In Memoriam: James C. Wofford

The USEA is heartbroken to hear about the loss of James “Jimmy” C. Wofford. A lifelong lover and supporter of the sport, Wofford has had an astounding influence on where eventing is today and has tirelessly supported the goals of the United States Eventing Association. He served as president of the American Horse Show Association (now U.S. Equestrian (USEF)), was the first vice-president of the U.S. Equestrian Team (USET), and served as secretary of the USCTA (now USEA). He served two terms as a member of the FEI Eventing Committee, including two years as vice chairman. In addition, he has served on numerous committees during his career.

Feb 02, 2023 Classic Series

Blast from the Past: Compete in a USEA Classic Series Event in 2023

Experience the thrill of traditional long format three-day eventing by competing in a USEA Classic Series event in 2023! The United States Eventing Association (USEA) is pleased to announce that the 2023 Classic Series calendar is now available.

Feb 01, 2023 Profile

Rescue Horse Runaway Romeo Finds His Calling

Amanda Walker wasn’t sure what she’d gotten herself into when she went to try Runaway Romeo as a potential sales project in 2018. The gelding was a bit bigger than Walker was looking for and was quite pushy coming out of the stall. When she got on, it didn’t get much better.

Jan 31, 2023 Educational Activities

USEA's Tip Tuesday: Cross-Country Positions with Karen O'Connor

For seasoned and novice riders alike, it is always good to revisit the basics. Serving as the foundation for any eventer, the positions used on the cross-country course differ from those in the dressage or show jumping ring. The USEA tuned into five-time Olympian, three-time World Equestrian Games rider, two Pan-American Games rider, and USEA ECP certified coach Karen O'Connor as she walked coaches and students at the USEA ECP Symposium through the basic positions for effective cross-country riding.

Official Corporate Sponsors of the USEA

Official Joint Therapy Treatment of the USEA

Official Feed of the USEA

Official Saddle of the USEA

Official Real Estate Partner of the USEA

Official Equine Insurance of the USEA

Official Forage of the USEA

Official Supplement Feeding System of the USEA

Official Outerwear of the USEA

Official Competition & Training Apparel of the USEA