First-class polo matches Cartier wins the St. Moritz Polo World Cup on Snow 2013
St. Moritz, 27 January 2013 – Between Thursday and Sunday, St. Moritz was the venue for some premier-class polo matches on the frozen Lake St. Moritz. The four teams, Cartier, Ralph Lauren, BMW and Sal. Oppenheim, battled for victory and glory in some hard-fought
games. Cartier finally triumphed against BMW with a result of 5:4 and today became the proud holder of the coveted Cartier Trophy. Places three and four went to Ralph Lauren and Sal. Oppenheim. This year, the tournament drew in several thousand spectators and offered a range of attractions off the playing field.
The prestigious polo tournament was a real success. Over the last four days, around 12,000 spectators enjoyed a spectacular top-class polo tournament in beautiful sunshine albeit freezing cold temperatures. The four teams, Cartier, Ralph Lauren, BMW and Deutsche Bank, represented by Sal. Oppenheim, competed for the Cartier Trophy on the frozen Lake St. Moritz. While Cartier had already secured its place in the final by Friday following its two match wins, the three other teams had everything to play for right up until the last play-off match. Ultimately, Cartier sealed its victory with a result of 5:4 against BMW thanks to Jonathan Munro Ford (patron), Max Charlton, Nacho Gonzalez and Chris Hyde. “The key to winning a match is to anticipate not only your opponent’s next move but the one after that, wherever possible; and on the snow, a little bit of luck sometimes comes in handy,” commented the delighted patron Jonathan Munro Ford on his victory. Third place went to Ralph Lauren, with fourth place going to Sal. Oppenheim from Deutsche Bank. Taking part in the St. Moritz Polo World Cup on Snow secures all players, and the winners in particular, points for the World Polo Tour, and thus influences their position in the world rankings.
Bernhard Pöllinger, Head of Sports & Infrastructure at St. Moritz Polo Corporation, is very pleased with the outcome of the St. Moritz Polo World Cup on Snow. “We’ve never seen so much extra time. Each of the teams gave the others no leeway whatsoever – this was polo at its absolute best, and we had some extremely well-matched teams. Each and every one of them could have been the winner! The mood on the pitch and in the village was outstanding, and the tournament was a complete success. I would like to thank everyone for their support – from the sponsors to all the helping hands in the background.”
Match report: victory through stamina and team spirit Jonathan Munro Ford’s Cartier team, featuring three British professionals, won the St Moritz Polo World Cup on Snow today, after beating BMW in the final, 5-4. Having lost to BMW yesterday, the Cartier side came out fighting and went on to win the coveted Cartier Trophy.
Cartier’s Chris Hyde, who was named the World Polo Tour most valuable player, worked his magic in the first half, helping his team secure a 5-1 lead by half time. However, BMW started to come back in the second half and Cartier had to fight hard to keep them out of the picture.
Both sides had a quiet first chukka, with Cartier scoring the only goal of the chukka – a penalty conversion by Hyde. However, come the second chukka, the game really started to hot up. Following another penalty conversion, Hyde received a brilliant hit up field by teammate Max Charlton and with controlled precision Hyde put the ball between the posts. Nacho Gonzalez then followed this up with the team’s fourth goal. Finally, Lucas Labat managed to get a goal on the scoreboard for BMW, converting a difficult 40-yard penalty. But Hyde, who was on outstanding from, and 22-year-old Charlton came flying into action to secure another goal before half time.
To the spectators in the packed stands, it looked as though it was already all over for BMW. Although BMW had beaten Cartier just 24 hours earlier, Cartier had clearly changed their tactics for the final. BMW’s three Argentine pros – Bautista Ortiz de Urbina, Lucas Labat and Ignacio Tillous – were still as strong as the day before but it was Cartier’s defence that shut them down and denied them vital opportunities at goal.
However, after some exchanged words at half time, BMW came back out with some renewed energy and better play. Labat and Tillous made a perfect play and, getting past Gonzalez, Tillous put the ball between the posts. BMW patron Andreas Knapp Voith could have had his moment of glory after having possession of the ball right in front of goal, but he fluffed it and the ball went out of play. All was not lost though as Urbina slotted the ball through the posts before the end of the third chukka.
With Urbina then scoring again at the start of the final chukka, it was starting to look dangerous for Cartier. They had let their foot off the gas in the third chukka and needed to work hard to prevent BMW from scoring the equaliser. And they did just that, with neither BMW or Cartier managing to score again, Cartier could let out a sigh of relief – and celebrate their win.
“The final was unbelievable,” Cartier’s Nacho Gonzalez said. “We got away in the first two chukkas but I just knew they were going to come back and they did. But we got there in the end. We changed our tactics after losing yesterday – Max and Chris put more pressure on them when they were hitting in and I started running back more and picking up the runners. We played a great game.”
“It was an absolutely fantastic final,” Jonathan Munro Ford added. “Everything we wanted to do panned out and we are over the moon. I certainly hope to come back next year.”
The polo village with a range of attractions
The tournament also offered a range of different attractions off the playing field. The polo village with its various show tents, from Veuve Clicquot, 1724 Tonic Water, Nespresso, the Ender Sport Polo Shop, BMW, Gulfstream and the Casino St. Moritz, was a popular meeting point for polo fans and horse lovers, tourists and locals alike.
Fund-raising for a children’s charity
At the St. Moritz Polo Gala Night, Christoph Richterich from St. Moritz Polo Corporation and sponsors Ralph Lauren, Cartier, BMW and Sal. Oppenheim handed over a donation to the value of CHF 40,000 to the charity BEYOND, whose patrons are Tina Turner, Regula Curti and Dechen Shak-Dagsay. BEYOND uses its proceeds to support intercultural, peace-promoting projects in the areas of education and research as well as projects for children, mothers and women in distress. The Giuvaulta institution was the beneficiary of this year’s charity campaign. The school, which is based in Domleschg (Graubünden), looks after mentally and physically handicapped children and adults (http://www.giuvaulta.ch).
Other special awards were also handed out during the St. Moritz Polo World Cup on Snow.
• Richard Davis from Sal. Oppenheim was named the Most Valuable Player at the St. Moritz Polo World Cup on Snow 2013 by St. Moritz Polo AG.
• Legenda (9 years old), an Argentine mare, ridden by Bautista Ortiz de Urbina from BMW and owned by Andreas Knapp Voith, was named Best Playing Pony of the St. Moritz Polo World Cup on Snow 2013 by Veuve Clicquot.
• Chris Hyde from Cartier was named the World Polo Tour Most Valuable Professional Player (WPT MVP) for January 2013 by World Polo Tour.
• Richard Davis from Sal. Oppenheim was named the World Polo Tour Most Valuable Amateur Player (WPT MVP) for January 2013 by World Polo Tour.
• Nacho Figueras from Ralph Lauren was named the Most Trendy/Chic Polo Player of the St. Moritz Polo World Cup on Snow 2013 by Veuve Clicquot. Match reports, background information and images directly from the lake
Urs E. Schwarzenbach (centre) with the four team sponsors and their representatives from BMW (Philippe Dehennin, CEO BMW Switzerland), Cartier (Arnaud Carrez, CEO Cartier Switzerland) Sal. Oppenheim (Carsten Kahl, Managing Director and member of the Executive Board, Deutsche Bank Switzerland) and Ralph Lauren (Nacho Figueras, brand ambassador of Ralph Lauren and
player for Team Ralph Lauren).
Next year, the St. Moritz Polo World Cup on Snow will be celebrating its 30-year anniversary and will take place between 30 January and 2 February 2014.
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About the St. Moritz Polo World Cup on Snow
The St. Moritz Polo World Cup on Snow is the world’s most prestigious and highest-level winter polo tournament on snow. Every year, four high-goal teams with handicaps of 15 to 18 goals compete on the frozen Lake St. Moritz for the coveted Cartier Trophy. Against a backdrop of breathtaking mountain scenery, spectators experience a world of sports characterised by strength, elegance, speed, pride and traditional British sportsmanship. St. Moritz Polo AG is the tournament organiser and a leading international expert in the field of equestrianism. The services provided cover the conception, planning and execution of polo events. The team that manages St. Moritz Polo AG has in-depth knowledge of the equestrian world, tournament organisation, infrastructure, hospitality, sponsorship and marketing. Next year, the St. Moritz Polo World Cup on Snow will be celebrating its 30-year anniversary: 30 January to 2 February 2014.