WELLINGTON, FL—October 8, 2016—After being spared the wrath of Hurricane Matthew, polo returns to center stage Sunday at Grand Champions Polo Club with the US Trust Cup.
Friday’s opening round was cancelled for the safety of the players and horses and to allow fields to dry.
Flexjet, Newport and US Trust will compete in a round-robin final beginning at 11 a.m. Flexjet opens against Newport.
Team rosters are:
Flexjet: (15) Riley Ganzi/Santos Bollini, Jason Crowder, 6, Juan Bollini, 5, Carlitos Gracida, 4.
Newport: (15) Gene Goldstein, 1, Jesse Bray, 5, Guille Aguero, 5, JJ Celis, 4.
US Trust: (14) Marc Ganzi, 1, Grant Ganzi, 1, Nic Roldan, 8, Jared Sheldon, 4.
Before the action begins, a moment of silence will be observed for watercolor artist Rod Skidmore, 85, who died from pancreatic cancer on Thursday night. The talented artist specialized in polo and horse-related sports in his artwork.
The tournament marks the fall season debut of five-goaler Jesse Bray for the second consecutive year. Bray made his Grand Champions fall debut last season in the US Trust Cup.
The Team USPA member is coming off the summer season in California. Bray and the Klentner Ranch Polo Team won the USPA Presidents Cup at Santa Barbara. Bray was named MVP.
Bray was a member of Team USPA’s FIP World Polo Championship runner-up team in Chile in March, 2015. Bray will compete against Jared Sheldon, another Team USPA member.
In last year’s US Trust Cup final, US Trust rallied in the second half for a thrilling 11-10 overtime victory over Postage Stamp Farm. Luis Escobar scored the winning goal in the first minute of sudden death to clinch the victory. It was the first victory of the fall season for US Trust, featuring father and son Marc and Grant Ganzi, Escobar and Bray. Grant Ganzi was named MVP.
US Trust, founded in 1853, is a wealth management and private banking company designed to address the needs of its clients, regardless of complexity. It provides investment management, wealth structuring, credit and lending services to clients.
Wellington-based ChukkerTV, leaders in polo broadcasting, is live streaming the entire fall schedule locally and worldwide.
ChukkerTV’s state-of-the art technology also features team challenges and instant replay which made their debut at Grand Champions in January, 2014.
Grand Champions, with five well-manicured fields and turnkey facility, expects to have its finest fall season in the ten-year history of the club.
The US Trust Cup is the second of nine tournaments during the fall. Flexjet (Riley Ganzi, Melissa Ganzi, Juan Bollini, Jason Crowder) won the season-opening Tackeria Invitational with a 7-6 victory over Casablanca.
The club is hosting seven medium goal, two 20-goal tournaments, the Carlos Gracida Memorial Legends of Polo game and International Cup.
Grand Champions is one of only two clubs in the nation to stage 20-goal tournaments. The club will host the Oct. 11-29 USPA North American Cup andNov. 12-20 USPA National 20-Goal tournaments.
The remaining medium goal tournaments are: Oct. 11-16 USPA Fall Classic; Oct. 18-23 USPA Eastern Challenge; Oct. 25-30 Pedro Morrison Memorial;Nov. 1-6 USPA Fall Plates and Nov. 8-13 Polo Gear Challenge.
Roster lineups change from tournament to tournament with evenly-matched teams to help improve player skills and performance while preparing for the winter season.
The schedule also features a world-class doubleheader on November 26th featuring the fifth annual International Cup which has become a holiday weekend tradition marking the end of the fall season.
Team USA has won the first four International Cups against England, Chile, Mexico and South Africa in the featured game.
In the opening game, the legacy of polo great Carlos Gracida continues with the Carlos Gracida Memorial Legends of Polo game, featuring some of the sport’s greats.
Grand Champions is one of the busiest and most innovative clubs in North America catering to men, women and youth polo players at all levels.
Its expert staff can customize a complete playing experience including horses, pros and certified umpires in addition to lessons and practice sessions.
The Polo School, a 501c3 organization, is dedicated to teaching polo to all ages, particularly grass roots youth. Its mission is to provide individuals opportunities in polo. The Polo School operates in Wellington January through June and September through November.
GRAND CHAMPIONS POLO CLUB
WHERE: 13444 Southfields Road, on the corner of South Shore Boulevard and Lake Worth Road, Wellington, 33414.
2016 FALL SCHEDULE
Sunday: US Trust Cup, round robin final, 11 a.m.; Groom’s Race.
Oct. 11-16, USPA Fall Classic
Oct. 11-29, USPA North American Cup
Oct. 18-23, USPA Eastern Challenge
Oct. 25-30, Pedro Morrison Memorial
Nov. 1-6, USPA Fall Plates
Nov. 8-13, Polo Gear Challenge
Nov. 12-20, USPA National 20-Goal
Nov. 26, Carlos Gracida Memorial Legends of Polo and International Cup.
INFORMATION: For spectators, there are great field side views for tournament action and also the Grand Champions Polo Club Boutique. The club is home base for pro teams Audi and Flexjet. Everyone is welcome to watch every level of polo in a relaxed atmosphere that includes a complimentary Argentine asado by Cilantro’s during the featured games of the winter, spring and fall tournament seasons and other special events. Admission is free except for some special events.