Ashley Busch, from Middleburg, Virgina, began riding horses at the tender age of 5. She showed hunters, and then, at age 11, began playing polo, "and completely fell in love."
The Wilhelmina model is known for being a face of the United States Polo Association, playing polo all over the world and competing on a regular basis at Grand Champions Polo Club in Wellington, Florida. We caught up with her when she was just in town for The Bentley Scottsdale Polo Championships, playing for Aspen Valley.
You fell in love with polo at age 11, what initially drew you to the sport?
I love that polo is a team sport! I really enjoy the camaraderie and competitiveness of it. The speed of the games and hitting that ball gets addicting!
What is one thing people would be surprised to learn about polo?
That it's more accessible than you think! Also, another thing that many people don't know is that you need at least 6 horses to play in one game. We switch horses every Chukker, which is a period that is 7 1/2 minutes long.
Between playing polo and modeling, you travel a lot—do you have any travel tips you can share?
Get as much sleep as possible, drink lots of water and carry a hydrating spray with you for after long flights or for a pick-me-up during the day. My favorite is the Tatcha illuminating spray.
You played in The Seventh Annual Bentley Scottsdale Polo Championships, The World’s Greatest Polo Party, here in Scottsdale. Can you tell us a little bit about the event?
It's one of the largest polo events in the world, more than 12,000 people attend! There are several events during the weekend, such as fashion shows, dog shows, car shows and more.
There are so many fun things happening at the polo party in addition to polo. Was there anything else you enjoyed about the event?
I [love to] see the cars that Barrett Jackson [Collector Car Auction] has on display, as well as Bentley. Bentley has always been one of my favorite automotive companies. I've got my eye on their new Bentayga SUV!
You recently wed race car driver Kurt Busch. How do you each support each other’s pursuits?
He goes to every polo match he can and is always there to help or hand me a water or give me a good luck kiss. I go to every race that I can—I love watching him race as much as he loves watching my games. Competitiveness runs in our blood, we are all about the horsepower!
You’ve been here in the Valley for some of his races before. What are some of your favorite locales?
Steak 44 and Dominick’s Steakhouse are both fabulous. I also love the little organic soft serve place in Downtown Scottsdale!