A doubleheader is scheduled on opening day and Sunday. On Friday, the first round games feature Flexjet against Palm Beach Equine at 3:30 p.m. and Newport playing Casablanca at 4:45 p.m.
The winners advance into Sunday’s final at 10 a.m. followed by the subsidiary game at 11:30 a.m.
Team rosters are:
Casablanca (12): Grant Ganzi, 1, Jared Sheldon, 4, Carlitos Gracida, 4, Juancito Bollini, 3.
Flexjet (11): Riley Ganzi, 0, Melissa Ganzi, 0, Jason Crowder, 6, Juan Bollini, 5.
Newport (12): Gene Goldstein, 1, Marc Ganzi, 1, Nic Roldan, 8, Leo Mandelbaum, 2.
Palm Beach Equine (13): Scott Swerdlin, 0, JJ Celis, 4, Guille Aguero, 6, Martin Estrada, 3.
|Gene Goldstein. File Photo|
Newport, one of the club’s most successful teams and pre-tournament favorite, features three-fourths (Ganzi, Mandelbaum, Roldan) of the runner-up East Coast Open team Audi that lost a gut-wrenching 12-11 overtime game to White Birch.
Crowder is coming off his Pacific Coast Open title as a member of the winning Restoration Hardware team that defeated FMB Too, 13-9, at the Santa Barbara Polo & Racquet Club.
Sheldon, a Team USPA member, is coming off the National Sherman Memorial win at New York City Polo Club with USPA Arena Chairman Dan Coleman and his son Zak Coleman on Pie Town Javelinas. The trio defeated New York City Polo Club (David Kuhn, Paul Kuhn, Sam Ramirez, Jr.), 17-16.
The Tackeria Invitational polo tournament has a special place in Grand Champions Polo Club history. It was the inaugural tournament at the club when it first opened.
“The Tackeria Invitational is the perfect way to kick off the season,” said Tackeria owner Tony Coppola, the voice of polo. “We are proud to be a returning sponsor with the Tackeria Invitational now in its eighth year.”
Postage Stamp Farm (Annabelle Gundlach, Brandon Phillips, Guille Aguero, Leo Mandelbaum) won last year’s Tackeria Invitational with a 9-4 victory over Audi (Santos Bollini, Marc Ganzi, Luis Escobar, Juan Bollini). Mandelbaum was named the tournament’s MVP.
In the subsidiary game, Casablanca (Grant Ganzi, Wes Finlayson, J.J. Celis, Julio Ezcurra) defeated Dutta Corp. (Timmy Dutta, Tim Dutta, Carlitos Gracida, Nic Roldan), 12-10.
|Nic Roldan. File Photo.|
Welligton-based ChukkerTV, leaders in polo broadcasting, will live stream 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.
The Tackeria, a longtime supporter of polo, is a complete equestrian shop located in the heart of Wellington horse country. It carries one of the most complete selections of equestrian equipment in the world.
It is a go-to source for equipment, supplies, fashion and gifts for the hunter/jumper, dressage and polo disciplines. The Tackeria is located on the corner of Pierson Rd. and South Shore at 13501 South Shore Blvd.
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 Tackeria Invitational is the first of ten fall tournaments. The club will host 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 medium goal tournaments are this weekend’s Tackeria Invitational; Oct. 4-9 US Trust Cup; 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.
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.
DIRECTOR OF POLO: Juan Olivera, 561-644-5050, juan.olivera @gcpolo.com; hotline 561-373-0073.
2016 FALL SCHEDULE
Friday-Sunday, Tackeria Invitational, Friday: Flexjet vs. Palm Beach Equine, 3:30 p.m., Newport vs. Casablanca, 4:45 p.m.;Sunday: Final, 10 a.m.; Subsidiary, 11:30 a.m.
Oct. 4-9, US Trust Cup
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.