Successful polo challenge for retrained racehorses

Earlier this month 43 former racehorses competed at The Royal County of Berkshire Polo Club to contest the RoR Racing to Polo Challenge, kindly supported by Lycetts.

The event continues to grow in popularity and is open to all RoR registered horses who have been in training or raced under any recognised racing authority.

As the rain fell, competitors arrived to declare their horses for one of the four classes being held on a ground at this prestigious Polo Club. This year, for the first time, an award was presented to the best playing lady rider.

Polo action with ex-racehorses
Photo John Simpson

The judges panel included Judith Balding, Senior Judge for conformation, joined by Rob Cudmore, Will Brasher, Nick Evans, Chris Price and Piers Plunkett who were judging performance. Each competitor presented their horses to the Conformation Judge prior to commencing their one and a half minute performance element of the Challenge.

The first class of the day was for three-year-olds, with nine horses coming forward to compete and demonstrate their adaptability to a second career on the Polo field. Judges focussed primarily on performance with type and conformation being taken into account in case of a tie, the winning combination was Ireland’s Angel, ridden and owned by Sebastian Chiavlo. The filly, by Lethal Force, was formerly trained by David Evans with whom she had four starts on the flat before retiring in September 2018. Second place was awarded to Cheeky Lola, formerly trained Tim Easterby, ridden by Nick Johnson and owned by Alan Kent

The four year old class, saw 11 horses come forward and was won by Whererainbowsend, formerly trained by Bryan Smart, owned and ridden by Ed Hitchman with second place awarded to Newton Place, formerly trained by Pat Fahy, ridden by Adam Buchanan and owned by Aurora Cotton-McKean.

The five year olds then came forward with 14 horses entered, the winner was Powerpuff owned and ridden by Ed Hitchman with No Luck Penny owned and ridden by Ben Eeley receiving the second prize.

The day culminated with the six year old and upwards class where nine horses were presented to the judges and proved to be a good class for Ed Hitchman who took first and second place with Sweets‘N’Sheets and Mrs Frosty respectively. Sweets’N’Sheets, part owned by Will Brasher, was in training with Paul Midgley when she ran twice finishing plum last in both starts. Clearly she has found her calling on the Polo field.

Lady riders, Katrina Thomas and Hannah Parry-Jones were awarded the inaugural overall Ladies prizes for their performances in the four classes.

RoR would, again, like to thank the Royal County of Berkshire Polo Club for hosting this wonderful event and also the judges, players and organisers for making this event such a success year on year. Special thanks to the HPA and Lycetts for their continued support.

Full results:

Class 1 – 3 year olds

1st. Ireland’s Angel owned and ridden by Sebastian Chialvo
2nd. Cheeky Lola ridden by Nick Johnson, owned by Alan Kent
3rd. Annie’s Bow ridden by Monty Campbell and owned by Jack Richardson

Class 2 – 4 year olds 

1st. Whererainbowsend owned and ridden by Ed Hitchman
2nd. Newton Place ridden by Adam Buchanan, owned by Aurora Cotton-Mckean
3rd. Runway Bay ridden by Nick Johnson, owned by Alan Kent

Class 3 – 5 year olds 

1st. Powerpuff owned and ridden by Ed Hitchman
2nd. No Luck Penny owned and ridden by Ben Eeley
3rd. Joy ridden by Miguel Ayala, owned by Pedro Harrison

Class 4 – 6 year olds and upwards 

1st. Sweets’N’Sheets owned and ridden by Ed Hitchman
2nd. Mrs Frosty owned and ridden by Ed Hitchman
3rd. Palavicini’s Girl ridden by Rupert Lewis, owned by Richard Le Poer

Last high goal polo match of Cowdray season

In the last high goal match of Cowdray Park’s 2019 season, the Final of the historic Challenge Cup, first presented in 1911, was played between Jonathan Rothermere’s Ferne Park and Alessandro Bazzoni’s Monterosso sides, writes Liz Higgins.

 Playing for Jonathan Rothermere were Richard Le Poer (5 goals) at number 2, Joaquin Pittaluga (7 goals) at 3 and Rodrigo Rueda (6 goals) at Back, making up the 18 goal team.  Alessandro Bazzoni playing off 1 goal was joined by young  guns Jose Ramon Araya (3 goals) at 2, Bartolomé Castagnola (6 goals) at 3 and the experienced 8 goaler Ignacio Toccalino at Back.

 Five frantic minutes of non-stop action opened the match until a super pass from Toccalino to Araya resulted in the first goal for Monterosso.  In chukka 2, Toccalino started the drive for the next goal, Castagnola picking up the ball and sending it to Bassoni who finished the play with goal number 2. 

Once again Toccalino went on the attack passing a super ball to Bassoni but the patron’s shot went wide.  Le Poer saved the next Monterosso attempt at goal and superfast end to end play saw Le Poer’s own attempt at goal thwarted by Toccalino. Rueda swooped in to try and re-gain possession but fouled Castagnola in the process.  A free hit sent the ball to Bazzoni via Castagnola and another great goal from the patron put 3-0 on the scoreboard.

Winning Harrison team with the cup Photo: Julian Portch

On the way to Monterosso’s goal mouth Rueda left the ball for Le Poer who backed through a neat shot to give Ferne Park their first goal, but from the throw-in Toccalino and Castagnola had full possession of the ball taking it all the way to 4-1 to end the chukka.

 Shortly into chukka 3 Araya stole the ball from Le Poer, Castagnola picked it up and it was 5-1 to Monterosso.  His next attempt went wide giving Le Poer the chance to race off and pass to Pittaluga in the hope of making it to the Monterosso goal, but the ever-present Castagnola snatched it away and was soon running through the posts again to make it 6-1 in Monterosso’s favour. The throw-in was won by Ferne Park and as Rothermere looked to pick up a useful pass from Pittaluga he was fouled.  A 30 yard penalty was awarded which Le Poer put through and the first half ended at 6-2 to Monterosso.

 A hit from the boards started the second half.  Le Poer stole the ball from under Castagnola’s stick and raced away to score.   Hard and fast play continued with once again Toccalino playing to all of his 8 goals and Castagnola the expert back-up.  Together they ran the ball again to Fern Park’s goal mouth with Araya waiting to flick it through for 7-3.  Ferne Park won the next throw-in, but in the ensuring tussle two consecutive whistles finally gave the side a penalty which Pittaluga accurately sent through from 40 yards.  Castagnola raced off from the next throw-in, lost the ball but Toccalino was on hand to see it between the posts and Monterosso ended the fourth chukka 8-4 ahead.

Merengada Best,Polo Pony played by Jose Araya.
Photo: Julian Portch

 The final chukka saw Rueda on the move from the off, fighting all the way to the goal mouth to pull one back for Ferne Park.  Le Poer tried desperately for another goal but his attempt went wide.  Toccalino brought the ball back in, Bassoni was set to carry it forward but was fouled in the process.  Toccalino scored from the 40 yard penalty awarded and it was all over for Ferne Park, Monterosso victorious at 9-5.

 Mrs Emma McRae presented the prestigious trophy to a delighted Alessando Bazzoni and prizes to all players.  The Most Valuable Player prize sponsored by Le Chameau went to Ignacio Toccalino and the Schweppes Best Playing Pony rug went to Merengada played by Jose Araya.     

Final of Harrison Cup at Cowdray Park

The Harrison Cup, Cowdray Challenge Cup and Holden White Cups, played as Cowdray’s Goodwood Week series, are open to all-comers and lead to the overall awards in the HPA’s Victor Ludorum series.  The Final of the 15 goal Harrison Cup, on August 3, is always the first to be played and was a truly exciting contest as befits one of the highest rated 15 goal tournaments in the UK polo calendar writes Liz Higgins.

 From a total of 14 teams entered, Sally Turner’s CPG Nightingale and Momin Sheikh’s Berkeley Healthcare made it through to the Final.  Alongside Sally were Will Harper (2 goals) playing at number 2, George Meyrick (6 goals) at 3 and 7 goaler Juan Gris Zavaleta at Back.  Lachie Gilmore (2 goals) took the number 2 slot for BHC, with 6 goaler Matt Perry at 3 and Jack Richardson (7 goals) at Back.

 

CPG Nightingale, winners of the Harrison Cup with their trophy cup Photo: Julian Portch

Zavaleta made the opening goal for CPG Nightingale, his score swiftly answered by Matt Perry for BHC. Zavaleta’s next attempt went wide but he was accurate in his following attempt and also made the pass that enabled young Harper to make goal number 3 for CPG Nightingale. 

 Chukka 2 started with a roll-in and the ball came out with BHC. Jack Richardson went on the attack and a brilliant pick up by Gilmore saw him send a mighty shot between the posts to pull a goal back for BHC.  Meyrick finished a lovely hit towards goal by Zavaleta and once more CFG Nightingale had a two goal lead – but not for long. 

A super goal from Perry helped to close the gap and Richardson made the goal that levelled the scores on 4-4.  In a terrific all-action chukka, another massive shot from Lachie Gilmore enabled BHC to take the lead, but their party was spoilt when Sally Turner made a useful pass to Zavaleta and the scores were equal again at 5-5 as the chukka closed.  Harper’s talent came to the fore with two great goals in chukka 3 while BHC failed to mark the scoreboard and the first half ended at 7-5 in CPG Nightingale’s favour.

 Within 15 seconds of chukka 4 opening, Zavaleta had taken CPG Nightingale on to 8-5 and it wasn’t long before he was charging away again, his attempt at goal finished off by Harper. 

Zavaleta’s  huge shot down the field accurately landed with Turner who aimed, hit the goal post, the ball then trickling through to put her side into double figures at 10-5.  Zavaleta obliged with another huge hit and it was seven goals on the trot for CPG Nightingale before a super goal from Jack Richardson saw the score at the end of chukka 4 at 11-6.

 The final chukka saw a rally from BHC with goals from both Perry and Richardson, the latter from a 60 yard penalty.  Was a come-back possible?  Not while Juan Gris Zavaleta was on the pitch.  He finished off a blistering performance with two more goals to give Sally Turner’s CPG Nightingale side a commanding victory of 13-8 and unsurprisingly picked up the Le Chameau prize for Most Valuable Player.  To round off his afternoon, Zavaleta’s pony Oli Vercera  was awarded the Schweppes rug for Best Playing Pony of the match.

 

UAE team wins British Ladies Polo Championships

A total of eleven teams entered the British Ladies Polo Championships at Cowdray Park, running concurrently with the final phase of the King Power Gold Cup, writes Liz Higgins .

Six teams were eligible for the 18 goal British Ladies Open Championship and five were entered into the 12 goal British Ladies Handicap Championship.

 The 18 goal British Ladies Open Championship concluded with HH Sheika Maitha al Maktoum’s UAE team and Lila Pearson’s Cowdray Vikings reaching the final.  Playing alongside Sheikha Maitha were Milly Hine (5 goals) at 2, Hazel Jackson (9 goals) at 3 and Catalina Lavinia (0 goals) at Back. 

Hannah Parry-Jones (3 goals) took the number 1 position for Cowdray Vikings with Lila Pearson (2 goals) at 2, Lottie Lamacraft (6 goals) at 3, and Sarah Wiseman (7 goals) at Back.

 First mark on the scoreboard came from Sarah Wiseman for Cowdray Vikings.    A whistle brought a free hit for Cowdray; Wiseman tapped the ball on but Millie Hine pounced on it giving Hazel Jackson the chance to charge forward and equalize as the chukka bell sounded. 

In a pacey second chukka, there was plenty of action but little in the way of goals, Millie Hine finally seeing the ball between the posts to take UAE 2-1 ahead at half time.

British Ladies Open Polo Winners, UAE
Photo: Mark Beaumont

 Catalina Lavinia raced away to score for UAE in the first minute of the second half.  Hazel Jackson put UAE  4-1 ahead by the close of the third chukka.  In the final chukka, Hine kept up the pressure on Sarah Wiseman who found it difficult to play her usual strong game. A 30 yard penalty awarded to UAE enabled Sheikha Maitha to increase her side’s score to 5-1 and a lovely run to goal by Hazel Jackson gave UAE a final score of 6-1.

Action in the British Ladies Open Championship: Photo Mark Beaumont

 Mrs Diana Wiseman presented the winners’ silver salver to Sheikha Maitha and prizes of luxury leather bags generously sponsored by Aspinal of London to the players. Kala owned and played by Hazel Jackson was awarded the Best Playing Pony prize and her pony Farsons picked up the RoR award for best re-trained racehorse.  The prize for Best Horsemanship, presented by Aurora Eastwood, went to Lottie Lamacraft.

In the 12 goal British Ladies Handicap Championship Final, Coombe Place met Carlton House.  Coombe Place had a half-goal advantage on the scoreboard to start the match.The first half ended with Carlton House ahead 3-1½ . 

Fortunes changed in the second half with Lamacraft making a great field goal and another from Waechter taking Coombe Place into a half goal lead of 3½-3.  Try as they might Carlton House could not pull back and a lovely third goal from Lottie Lamacraft gave the victory to Coombe Place on 4½-3.

British Ladies Polo Handicap event- both teams. Photo Mark Beaumont

 Sehr Ahmad presented the prizes generously sponsored by Aspinal of London, the Best Playing Pony of the match was judged to be Yonkie owned and played by Stephanie Haverhals who also picked up the prize for Best Horsemanship presented by Aurora Eastwood.

Exciting Gold Cup polo semi-finals at Cowdray Park

Two exciting semi-Finals between VS King Power and Park Place -and then Dubai and Scone Polo, saw victories for Top Srivaddhanaprabha’s VS King Power team and Ali Albwardy’s Dubai taking them to Sunday’s Final.

The two sides last met in a Gold Cup Final at Cowdray Park in 2014, writes Liz Higgins

VS King Power, who have added VS to the team’s name in memory of Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha who lost his life in a helicopter crash at Leicester City FC stadium in October 2018, altered their line-up for the Final.

Gold Cup Action with Zubia   Photo: Mark Beaumont

Vichai’s son ‘Top’ Srivaddhanaprabha played at number 1 as usual, but Polito Pieres took the number 2 slot, Marcos di Paola moving up to 3 and Juan Martin Zubia playing at Back.  Dubai kept their line-up unchanged with 16 year old Camilo Castagnola at 1, Rashid Albwardy at 2, Bartolomé Castagnola at 3 and Ignacio  du Plessis at Back.

Chukka 1 opened with Pieres immediately on the attack, his first attempt at goal going wide.  A couple of minutes of frantic action resulted in a penalty being awarded to Dubai which Camilo Castagnola sent from 30 yards to secure the opening goal of the match for his side.  A lovely steal by Polito was the making of goal number 2, with Zubia picking up the ball and sending it between the posts. Polito won the ball from the throw in and tore all the way to Dubai’s end to make it 2-1 for King Power to close the chukka.

Packed grandstand at the finals. Photo:Mark Beaumont

Camilo and Bartolomé Castagnola produced three goals in chukka 2, and, with just one from Pieres for VS King Power, the chukka ended with Dubai 4-3 ahead. A fast and tough chukka 3 saw a spot penalty awarded to KVS King Power right in front of Dubai’s goal, which Polito sent through to equalize, but Bartolomé answered with two goals for Dubai and at the end of the first half the score stood at 6-4 in Dubai’s favour.

When the fourth chukka got underway, a fantastic piece of play saw Polito Pieres leave the ball for Zubia who obliged with a huge lofted shot to score goal number 11 for VS King Power.  Rashid Albwardy won the ball from the throw-in but di Paola grabbed it back, Zubia stopped Bartolomé from snatching it while Marcos came through and passed to Top who made a superb goal to even the scores on 6-6.  Another fantastic goal from Top and King Power were ahead.  A 30 yard penalty awarded to King Power as the chukka was drawing to a close enabled Polito Pieres to extend the lead to 8-6.

Best Open Champion Polo Pony, Chacota
Photo:Mark Beaumont

A frantic fifth chukka saw spot penalties produce a goal for each side before a fantastic shot, hit from way back, saw Polito Pieres take VS King Power on to 10-7.  His next goal came from a 60 yard penalty and it was 11-7 in VS King Power’s favour.  Dubai won the next throw-in but with Bartolomé challenged by Pieres, his young brother coolly slipped through and scored, the chukka ending at 11-8 to VS King Power.

The sixth chukka opened with a swift goal from Camilo, then it was his brother’s turn to shoot a mighty goal.  Camilo won the ball from the throw-in and there was a scramble in front of VS King Power’s goal which resulted in a whistle.  Bartolomé calmly sent the ball through the posts from 60 yards and it was 11-11.  The excitement in the crowd was palpable.  VS King Power won the throw-in and Polito scored to take his side into the lead again.  Top saved the ball from Dubai’s next attempt at goal, but, aided by the power of du Plessis, Bartolomé was able to find a way through and even the scores at 12-12 before the whistle blew.The match went into a seventh chukka and started with a throw-in.

Exciting action in the match as Du Plessis goes after Top
Photo: Mark Beaumont

Away went Zubia with the ball, but du Plessis was having none of it and struck out for the other end.  Top made a great clearance, the ball taken on by Marcos di Paola, Polito Pieres and then Zubia who raced away to Dubai’s goal only to send the ball wide.

In came the ball from the back line and off down the boards raced Bartolomé, the wonderfully intuitive combination with his brother, seen throughout this Gold Cup tournament, coming to the fore as Camilo dived forward with the ball and put it through.  Dubai had won the King Power Gold Cup on a score of 13-12 in truly breathtaking finish.

Best Polo Pony rug was presented by the Hon Lila Pearson to Rebalde, owned and played by Camilo Castagnola   Photo: Mark Beaumont

Jon Rudkin, Director of Football for Leicester City FC, presented individual prizes to all players, the tournament umpires and commentators before handing the coveted Gold Cup to Rashid Albwardy, son of the Dubai patron.  The Most Valuable Player of the match award went to Polito Pieres of VS King Power, Open Chacota, owned and played by Top Srivaddhanaprabha, was voted Best Playing Patron’s Pony, and Rebalde, owned and played by Camilo Castagnola, was awarded Best Playing Pony of the match, with a rug presented by The Hon Lila Pearson.

Following the match, Ali Albwardy, patron of Dubai said, “It was such an exciting match.  I’m proud of all the boys in this young team, they played fantastically – in fact, both teams had a wonderful match.  The game was entertaining to watch, hard, fast and exactly what polo should be.  I thank Cowdray Park Polo Club for their fantastic organisation of the tournament.”

 

Memorial Polo Trophy marks tragic death of King Power chairman

Cowdray Park Polo Club has announced a new programme for Quarter Finals weekend of the 2019 King Power Gold Cup.

On Sunday July 14, the inaugural Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha Memorial Trophy will be played as the 3.00 pm match to mark the tragic loss of King Power chairman Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha in a helicopter crash at the King Power football stadium in Leicester in October 2018.
A new trophy has been commissioned and will be presented to the winning team.

This all-important fourth quarter final match of the weekend will be preceded by a programme of entertainment to both encompass Vichai’s sporting passions and to also celebrate the life of the philanthrophic Thai businessman.

 

Vichai Srivaddhanprabha, chairman of King Power, pictured with children before his death. Photo copyright Mark Beaumont

Amongst the entertainment planned is a children’s football match between local boys and girls making up a Leicester City and a Midhurst away shirts.

To recognise Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha’s passion for equestrian sport, there will also be a parade of some of his racehorses, planned to include the King Power stables’ Cleontewinner of the Queen Alexandra Stakes on the final day of Ascot 2019.

The King Power Foxes polo team won the Gold Cup for the British Open Polo Championship in 2015, 2016 and 2017, having first entered the Gold Cup in 2014.  In 2018 Cowdray Park Polo Club was delighted to see King Power take over sponsorship of the prestigious 22 goal British Open in a three year contract.

Vichai Srivaddhahaprabha loved the friendly and laid-back atmosphere at Cowdray Park and the club is keen to mark his polo legacy by making his Memorial Trophy a permanent fixture of the Gold Cup for the British Open Polo Championship.

On Saturday July 13, the afternoon’s 3.00 pm match will be the Hungarian Ambassador’s Cup, played for a second year in front of guests of His Excellency Kristof Szalay-Bobrovniczky, who will be presenting the handsome trophy he commissioned in 2018..

The four winning teams in the Quarter Finals go forward to the Semi Finals to be played on Wednesday July 17 with the Final taking place on Sunday July 21.  Team information will be available after July 10.

Please visit http://www.cowdraypolo.co.uk for more information

Polo’s 2019 King Power Gold Cup quarter finals

Cowdray Park Polo Club has announced a new programme for Quarter Finals weekend of the 2019 King Power Gold Cup.

On Sunday July 14, the inaugural Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha Memorial Trophy will be played as the 3pm match to mark the tragic loss of King Power Chairman Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha in a helicopter crash at the King Power football stadium in Leicester in October 2018.

A new trophy has been commissioned and will be presented to the winning team. This all-important fourth quarter final match of the weekend will be preceded by a programme of entertainment to both encompass Vichai’s sporting passions and to also celebrate the life of the philanthrophic Thai businessman.

Vichai Srivaddhanprabha, chairman of King Power, pictured before his death

Amongst the entertainment planned is a children’s football match between local boys and girls making up a Leicester City and a Midhurst team in King Power’s home and away shirts.  To recognise Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha’s passion for equestrian sport, there will also be a parade of some of his race-horses, planned to include the King Power stables’ Cleontewinner of the Queen Alexandra Stakes on the final day of Ascot 2019.

The King Power Foxes polo team won the Gold Cup for the British Open Polo Championship in 2015, 2016 and 2017, having first entered the Gold Cup in 2014.  In 2018 Cowdray Park Polo Club was delighted to see King Power take over sponsorship of the prestigious 22 goal British Open in a three year contract.

Vichai Srivaddhahaprabha loved the friendly and laid-back atmosphere at Cowdray Park and the club is keen to mark his polo legacy by making his Memorial Trophy a permanent fixture of the Gold Cup for the British Open Polo Championship.

On Saturday July 13, the afternoon’s 3.00 pm match will be the Hungarian Ambassador’s Cup, played for a second year in front of guests of His Excellency Kristof Szalay-Bobrovniczky, who will be presenting the handsome trophy he commissioned in 2018.

The four winning teams in the Quarter Finals go forward to the Semi Finals to be played on Wednesday July 17 with the Final taking place on Sunday July 21.  For more information, please visit www.cowdraypolo.co.uk.

 

Ten polo teams in 2019 King Power Gold Cup

Ten teams have entered the 2019 King Power Gold Cup, played to decide the British Open Polo Championship, with one brand new side joining the competition.

It is the first time for many years that Adolfo Cambiaso will not be seen in the high goal at Cowdray Park, the world’s number one player for almost two decades having decided to retire from UK polo.  However, several exceptional young players will be making their mark.

New to the Gold Cup is ‘Scone’ the team of Australian patron David Paradice, which sees Nico Pieres (9 goals) taking up the number 2 position and England captain James Beim (7 goals) and James Harper (6 goals) at number 3 and Back respectively.  Beim and Harper were team-mates in the winning El Remanso side of 2018, which disbanded following the 2019 Gold Cup.  Scone has reached the Final of the Cartier Queen’s Cup.

King Power Gold Cup trophies 2018
Photo:Mark Beaumont

Seven teams return from the 2018 King Power Gold Cup.  Amongst them are finalists La Bamba de Areco, the team of Jean Francois Decaux, who brings in young Englishman Kian Hall, 3 goals, to play alongside David ‘Pelon’ Stirling and 10 goaler Juan Martin Nero.

La Indiana, semi Finalists from 2018, sees patron Michael Bickford introduce young English player Jimbo Fewster to his team, playing alongside Rodrigo Andrade who has taken over from Nic Roldan, and 10 goaler Facundo Pieres.  Corinne Ricard brings back Murus Sanctus with Facundo Sola and Gonzalito Pieres, the final team member to be confirmed.

The draw for the tournament

Park Place returns with patron Andrey Borodin playing at number 1, Juan Britos at 2 and 10 goaler Hillario Ulloa at 3, the final team member to be confirmed. Park Place have also reached the Final of the Cartier Queen’s Cup.  Spencer McCarthy retains ‘Tincho’ Merlos in his Emlor side but brings in Alfredo Bigtatti and Fred Mannix Jr, both playing off 7 goals. Alessandro Bezzoni is joined in his Monterosso side by Juan Gris Zavaleta, Ignacio Toccalino and Joaquin Pittaluga. Edouard Carmignac brings back an unchanged Talandracas team with Fran Elizalde, Ale Muzzio and Julian de Lusarreta.

Returning after a year’s absence is King Power, with ‘Top’ Srivaddhanaprabha at the front door, Juan Martin Zubia at 2, Polito Pieres at 3 and Marcos di Paola at Back.  Returning after an absence of several years is the Albwardy family’s Dubai side with Rashid Albwardy joined by the young talent of Camilo and Bartolomé Castagnola, and a former popular young player at Cowdray, South African Nachi du Plessis, now an 8 goal player after being based in North and South America for a number of years.

Chris Bethell, Polo Manager, has announce dthat there will be two leagues in the competition with the Finalists of the Cartier Queens Cup Semi Finals, Scone Polo, King Power, La Indiana and Park Place, seeded into each league, the remaining teams having drawn for places in either league at the recent King Power Gold Cup Draw held at Cowdray House on Monday June 10.  A list of teams and schedule of matchplay are attached.

The tournament gets underway on June 25 with Quarter Finals over the weekend of July 13/14 , Semi Finals on July 17 and the Final taking place on Sunday July 21.

Nina Clarkin to compete at Polo in the Park

The international squads for this year’s Chestertons Polo in the Park, at London’s prestigious Hurlingham Club on 7-9 June, are the best on record. The sporting event that kicks off the summer social series is guaranteed to be a weekend packed with international talent and fierce rivalry to excite spectators.

The crowd will be in for an extra treat when the world’s best female player takes to the pitch. World-renowned 10 goaler Nina Clarkin will compete alongside her male counterparts as she lines up as part of Frasers England team against Australia on Friday June 7, marking the respect for a level playing field of men and women in sport.

Launched in 2015, the international match is often a tournament highlight. Australia whetted polo lovers’ appetites when they recently announced their highly-accomplished side (below) and England have today shown their ambition to match such quality, unveiling Oliver Cudmore as the Captain alongside Nina Clarkin in their stellar cast.

Nina Clarkin in action
Photo courtesy Polo In The Park

In the headline act this year, England will be determined to make amends for last month’s defeat to Australia. In addition to the international centre-piece, six star-studded sides have been selected to represent London, Buenos Aires, Dubai, Kissimmee, Shanghai and Zurich to ensure an exhilarating performance for both established and blossoming polo fans.

These matches will be announced at the tournament draw this evening (May 8 ) in The Garden Room of the stunning Jumeirah Carlton Tower, London.

Rory Heron, Managing Director and Founder of Sportgate International said: “We are incredibly excited by the level and profile of players that have been selected for this year’s tournament.  Yet again, we are going to have the privilege of hosting an incredible roster of some of the world’s leading polo players, which is so important for us at this year’s extra special 10 Year Anniversary. It is guaranteed to be a brilliant summer spectacle for our avid and aspiring polo lovers!”

For more information and to book tickets http://polointheparklondon.com/

Don’t miss polo in the park

Six city Polo teams from across the globe (including Buenos Aires, Shanghai, Zurich, Kissimmee, London and Dubai) descended on the iconic Hurlingham Park two days ago to play three fiercely competitive matches every day in front of a packed-out crowd.

The tournament winners will be crowned on Finals Family Funday on Sunday June 9.

Jumeirah Carlton Tower hosted the ultimate summer celebration attended by some of the world’s leading polo players, socialites and stars alike to launch Chestertons Polo in the Park 2019. Liz McClarnon, Ruby Mae and Jean Fernandez Versini rubbed shoulders with Jeremy Parisi, Victoria Clay, Nurce Erben and Andreea Cristea as they enjoyed Slingsby Gin cocktails and Champagne Lanson, paired with canapes from Jumeirah Carlton Tower’s executive chef team.

Managing Director of Sportgate International, Rory Heron was thrilled with the 10th anniversary celebratory launch: “Jumeirah have come on board for the first time this year and have provided a wonderful venue to host our 10th anniversary launch for Chestertons Polo in the Park 2019.

“We’ve been delighted by the continued enthusiasm and support from players, sponsors, media and polo fans over the years. We’re proud also to announce that we have secured a further 11 years with the local council to continue the event at the prestigious location of Hurlingham Park.”

Matches feature the world’s best polo players each day, alongside The Grazing Paddock for restaurants and street food; the iconic Mahiki VIP bar and Fever Tree Garden featuring new Slingsby Gin and Patron Tequila cocktails; the Champagne Lanson Garden and the Luxury Shopping Village.

 Tickets for Chestertons Polo in the Park start from just £15. Tickets can be purchased from https://polo-in-the-park.frontgatetickets.com. For more information and to book tickets http://polointheparklondon.com/

Last night (Wednesday 8 May), Jumeirah Carlton Tower hosted the ultimate summer celebration attended by some of the world’s leading polo players, socialites and stars alike to launch Chestertons Polo in the Park 2019. Liz McClarnon, Ruby Mae and Jean Fernandez Versini rubbed shoulders with Jeremy Parisi, Victoria Clay, Nurce Erben and Andreea Cristea as they enjoyed Slingsby Gin cocktails and Champagne Lanson, paired with canapes from Jumeirah Carlton Tower’s executive chef team.

Managing Director of Sportgate International, Rory Heron was thrilled with the 10th anniversary celebratory launch: “Jumeirah have come on board for the first time this year and have provided a wonderful venue to host our 10th anniversary launch for Chestertons Polo in the Park 2019. We’ve been delighted by the continued enthusiasm and support from players, sponsors, media and polo fans over the years. We’re proud also to announce that we have secured a further 11 years with the local council to continue the event at the prestigious location of Hurlingham Park.”