Kris Kampsen knows what it is like to go through tough times. He's been a fan of polo since he was young. With the help of his father Edward (co-founder of the Tampa Bay Polo Club), he started playing when he was young and decided to be a professional at 15 years of age. However, an accident on a mountain bike in 2015 in Colorado broke his T-2 Vertebrae and gave him a neck injury, which put his career in the sport at risk. However, he did not give up and powered through the rehabilitation, making a comeback to the high goal polo in Wellington.
The 36 year old, married to Alexandra and father to 15 month old Rowan, has been essential for Postage Stamp Farm to remain undefeated in the Ylvisaker Cup at the International Polo Club. “The team was formed in August 2016. Annabelle Gundlach, Mariano Aguerre and Brandon Phillips were already set for the 2017 season and I was lucky to get to be on the team. We are all friends on and off the field so that really helps our chemistry together. I think that we have a great chance to make a final," he told CLICKPOLOUSA.
“My goal this season is to win a major tournament”
-Looking back, what do you think of the accident that caused your injuries?
"I was extremely lucky to not be paralyzed. I broke my T2 vertebrae and had a piece of bone pressing my spinal cord. Dr Barth Greene and the University of Miami Spinal Institute worked miracles and I feel truly blessed every day that I am able to continue to live out my passion."
-What are your goals for this season?
"My goal this season is to win a major tournament here in Palm Beach. I have all the confidence in my team and I know we can do it."
-What is your take on the beginning of the season in Palm Beach?
"The teams every year in this level of polo are very strong. Everyone is well organized and on any given day, any of the teams can win."
"I try to be unselfish and a great teammate"
-Which player did you enjoy playing with most?
"I have been very lucky to have played alongside hall of fame players in my career and I have tried to learn from each of them as much as I could."
-What are your best abilities as player?
"Super tough question for me. I try to be unselfish and a great teammate."
-People often recognize you because of your helmet. Why did you choose that design?
"My favorite colors are blue (helmet) and orange (peak). I added the Florida state flag to my helmet this year as there aren’t many native Floridian polo players."
-In addition, do you have hobbies besides polo?
"I enjoy golf, fishing and hunting in my off time."