Brandon Phillips scored back-to-back goals in the fourth chukker to lead Virginia-based Altair Polo to a 7-6.5 victory over The Polo School to capture the Grand Champions Cup Saturday at Santa Rita Polo Farm.
It was the Middleburg, Va.-based Altair Polo’s (Ashley Busch, Grant Ganzi, Brandon Phillips, Juancito Bollini) second spring tournament victory in three years.
The foursome of Busch, Santos Bollini, Brandon Phillips and Carlitos Gracida defeated Newport (Lucas Escobar, Gene Goldstein, Lucas Lalor, Nacho Lezica), 10-9, to win the 8-Goal Spring Challenge Tournament at Grand Champions in 2015.
On a perfect day for polo at Grand Champions Polo Club, the Navy knocked off the Army and Grand Champions to win the Power Horse Invitational during the USPA Military Polo Experience.
While there is always an intense rivalry when the Army and Navy get together, it was more fun than battle among the three teams in a spirited round-robin tournament held Wednesday at one of the nation’s busiest and most innovative polo clubs.
Navy (Karl Hilberg, Melissa Ganzi, Paul Knapp, Alejandro Novillo Astrada) defeated Grand Champions (Lolly Stanhope-White, Tommy Graff, Markus Graff, Pablo Dorignac), 2-1, and Army (Mark Gillespie, Terrence Donahue, Jesse Bray, Juan Bollini), 3-1. In the other two-chukker game, Army defeated Grand Champions, 3-2.
-The always exciting USPA Eastern Challenge gets under way Friday at Grand Champions Polo Club.
Five teams will compete during the two-day tournament. Two opening round games are scheduled for Friday.
Newport opens play against Dutta Corp at 11 a.m. on Field One. Dutta Corp is coming off its spring season-opening tournament win over Whitehall Ranch.
-Dutta Corp came full circle in its spring season-opening victory in the Santa Rita Abierto final Wednesday at windswept Grand Champions Polo Club.
It was the second consecutive year the team won the tournament. Last year as a 15-goal team, Dutta Corp won the 16-goal rated tournament with pro Matias Magrini, brothers Carlitos and Mariano Gracida and Timmy Dutta.
This year the talented 11-goal team of Tim Dutta, Timmy Dutta, Piki Diaz Alberdi and Carlitos Gracida won the 14-goal tournament with an impressive 12-5 victory over Whitehall Ranch.
Valiente, making its spring season debut, captured the Santa Rita Handicap Saturday at windswept Valiente Polo Farm.
Valiente (Poroto Cambiaso, Mia Cambiaso, Robertito Zedda, Pablo Spinacci) was the top finisher in the two-day round robin tournament.
Graff Capital (Tommy Graff, Pablo Dorignac, Juan Bollini, Markus Graff) was second and Altair (Ashley Van Metre Busch, Will Jacobs, Jesse Bray, Brandon Phillips) finished third.
Flexjet fought to the finish, giving defending champion Orchard Hill all it could handle before losing a heartbreaking 10-9 overtime game in Wednesday’ssemifinals of the 113th U.S. Open at International Polo Club Palm Beach.
Flexjet (Melissa Ganzi, Rodrigo Andrade, Gonzalito Pieres and Nico Pieres) was the only undefeated team (3-0) in the six-team, 26-goal tournament going into the semifinal round.
It was the farthest Flexjet had advanced in the U.S. Open in team history.
Argentine 10-goaler Facundo Pieres, playing against his two brothers and with his cousin Polito Pieres, won the throw-in near the boards and followed up his 100-yard approach shot with a nearside tap with 2:33 left in overtime to clinch the victory with his 100th goal of the season on his favorite mare Corcha.