WELLINGTON, FL., November 10, 2016---The eighth annual Polo Gear Challenge Cup, one of the nation’s oldest tournaments, gets under way Friday at Grand Champions Polo Club.
It is the eighth and final medium goal tournament of the fall season.
Four teams will compete including defending champion Audi.
Opening day games on Friday feature Palm Beach Polo playing Newport at 1 p.m. on Field 3 and Audi playing Dutta Corp at 3:30 p.m. on Field 1.
Winners advance into Sunday’s final at 9:30 a.m.followed by the popular Grooms Race and handicap final at 11:30 a.m.
The team rosters are:
Audi: (13) Marc Ganzi, 1, Grant Ganzi, 1, Juancito Bollini, 3, Nic Roldan, 8.
Dutta Corp: (13) Timmy Dutta, 1, Tim Dutta, A, Guille Aguero, 6, Jason Crowder, 6.
Palm Beach Polo: (13) Glenn Straub, A, Jeff Blake, 5, Carlitos Gracida, 4, Jared Sheldon, 4.
Travieso: (14) Gene Goldstein, 1, Tony Calle, 2, Jesse Bray, 5, Kris Kampsen, 6.
In last year’s Polo Gear Challenge Cup, Audi (Timmy Dutta, Marc Ganzi, Jason Crowder, Brandon Phillips) rallied for a thrilling 11-10 overtime victory over Melody (Cesar Gueikian, Kris Kampsen, JJ Celis, Lucas Lalor).
Teenager Timmy Dutta, at 14, the youngest player in the tournament, scored the winning goal at 7:08 of the seventh chukker.
“I told myself I got to do this, I got this,” Dutta said after the game. “I was going to take a nice tap and I said no, this is over and bang it went through the goal. It was a good day in the office.”
Crowder, 33, was named Most Valuable Player.
Polo Gear co-founder Gary Fellers, who played polo for nearly forty years from zero to 26-goal, is pleased with the success of the long-running tournament at Grand Champions.
“We have had the Polo Gear Challenge Cup since the beginning,” Fellers said. “We have been involved with Grand Champions for a long time. We are proud to be part of it in any way we can.”
Polo Gear, one of the sport’s top sponsors and supporters of polo established in 1993 and incorporated in Florida, manufactures, distributes and sells polo products to players, teams and polo events worldwide. For more information on Polo Gear and to order products, visit www.pologearusa.com.
Grand Champions is the only club in the nation to stage USPA-sanctioned 20-goal tournaments during the fall. At the conclusion of medium goal action, the club is hosting the USPA National 20-Goal and USPA North American Cup later this month along with the Nov. 26 Carlos Gracida Memorial Legends of Polo and fifth annual International Cup featuring Team USA against Uruguay.
Wellington-based ChukkerTV, leaders in polo broadcasting, is live streaming the entire fall season worldwide with polo announcer Dale Schwetz calling the action and various guest commentators.
ChukkerTV’s state-of-the art technology features team challenges and instant replay which made their debut at Grand Champions in January, 2014.
Grand Champions, with eleven well-manicured fields, is one of the busiest and most innovative clubs in the nation and is enjoying its finest fall season in the ten-year history of the club.
The club has now hosted eight successful medium goal tournaments.
The fall season winners are Flexjet (MVP Riley Ganzi, Melissa Ganzi, Juan Bollini, Jason Crowder) won the season-opening Tackeria Invitational with a 7-6 victory over Casablanca; U.S. Trust (Marc Ganzi, Grant Ganzi, MVP Jared Shelton, Nic Roldan) won the U.S. Trust Cup with a 5.5-3 win over Flexjet. Casablanca(Jared Sheldon, Grant Ganzi, Tony Calle, MVP Jesse Bray) won the Fall Classic with an 11-9 victory over Flexjet. Postage Stamp Farm (Annabelle Gundlach, MVP Marc Ganzi, JJ Celis, Nic Roldan) won the Palm Restaurant Invitational with a 10-9 win over Flexjet; Palm Beach Polo (MVP Glenn Straub, Martin Estrada, Carlitos Gracida, Carlucho Arellano) won the Mt. Sopris Cup with a 7-4 win over Santa Rita; Flexjet (Riley Ganzi, MVP Juan Bollini, JJ Celis, Juancito Bollini) defeated Audi, 7-6, in overtime to win the Pedro Morrison Memorial; and Travieso (MVP Teo Calle, Tony Calle, Jared Sheldon, Carlucho Arellano) won the Fall Plates with a 7-3 victory over Palm Beach Polo.
Grand Champions caters 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 as part of its’ Polo On Demand program, the only polo club in the U.S. to offer the uniqueprogram.
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
Polo Gear Challenge, Friday, 1 p.m., Newport vs. Palm Beach Polo, Field 3; 3 p.m., Audi vs. Dutta Corp, Field 1; Sunday, 9:30 a.m., Championship, Field 2; 11:30 a.m., Grooms Race, Handicap Final, Field 1.
Nov. 18-20, USPA National 20-Goal
Nov. 21-23, USPA North American Cup
Nov. 26, Carlos Gracida Memorial Legends of Polo and fifth annual International Cup, Team USA vs. Uruguay.
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.