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and encouraging more of them to come out and try it and take those risks one needs to take to get better at something. Naomi Manin’tVeld, who got her polo start in East Van, says, “It’s actually empowering to have a women’s only tournament, especially for women who play in male-dominated communities. I am the only woman who plays regularly in Boston and while I think my game is getting better and better and the men I play with are total sweethearts, it’s nice to be reminded that ladies love polo too, and that the community is bigger out there.”

Machine, an ex-pat from Scotland, now living in San Francisco who has attended the past two Ladies Army tournaments says, “There is a good vibe, a great vibe, and the stamina! It’s the only tournament like it on the planet! You can’t improve on perfect. It’s an amazing tournament.”

Maureen Grady, one of the organizers of Ladies Army III in Austin described the difference of an all women tournament, “Ladies Army differs most from any other tournament in the amount of women present. Every other tournament in bike polo is ruled and dominantly populated by penises. That fact alone changes the vibe, hands down. Ladies Army is just as tough and hard of a weekend as any other tournament experience I have ever been to, it just tends to be way more social and full of “lady love” and the infamous “polo girl crush” and a super fun positive vibe.” Maki Hojo, who traveled with her teammates from Japan for the tournament, agreed that it was so amazing to play against good women players and it has inspired her to “practice more and have better games next time.”

Naomi Manin’tVeld, so inspired by her experience in Lexington that she included a write up about it on her blog: “What struck me this year was how talented the players are. I didn’t go to Austin last year and there seemed to be an incredible leap of ability from New York to now. The caliber of play is getting better and better… Coming into the weekend I felt happy to just go out there and play a pick-up style of game. My tune quickly changed during my first game with Jen and Lisa. It was attack, attack, attack…”

The winners of this year’s Ladies Army were rewarded with a spot at the World

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