Snow Polo World Cup 2015, St Moritz: Team Cartier storm to hat-trick success

final-day-snow-polo-world-cup-st-moriz-2015With a sensational 10-2.5 win over Team BMW, Team Cartier won the 31st Snow Polo World Cup 2015 in St. Moritz. Winning the tournament for the third time in a row, Team Cartier completed the hat trick. The 6-goaler Chris Hyde from England scored his team to victory; there was no way past him today. Hyde plays with a 9-goal arena handicap in England, making him one of the world’s best arena players. Chris Hyde, paired with a superb horse and displaying superior tactical skill, his Australian team captain Jonathan Munro Ford and the two English team mates Max Charlton and Jamie Morrison had but one aim—winning.

By the start of the third chukker, Cartier had banked a clear lead of 5-1.5. In the third chukker, the brilliance of the game of the young Max Charlton of Team Cartier came to the fore— scoring three memorable goals in the fourth chukker alone. One of them was an acrobatic backhander. Charlton, who is also part of the English national team, showed a terrific game. Overall, an overwhelming victory for Team Cartier. «Reto Gaudenzi won the St. Moritz tournament five times—we want to repeat that,» said Guillaume Alix, Managing Director of Cartier Switzerland.

After the game, polo pro Chris Hyde, playing for the winning team and scoring five of the final’s ten goals, praised the high level of the tournament. «Yesterday’s game [against Badrutt’s Palace] was one of the best snow polo games I ever played in or anyone has ever seen, I think,» said the scorer of the three-times winning team. «The conditions were superb—today and yesterday, that’s the best I’ve ever played on.»

Brilliant sunshine and prickling minus temperatures showcased the last day of the Snow Polo World Cup in St. Moritz. Team Trois Pommes and Team Badrutt’s Palace faced each other in the La Martina Cup, competing for third place. Team Trois Pommes, uniting Cédric Schweri and Thomas «Tutti» Wolfensberger, both Swiss, and the two Argentine pros Pepe Riglos and Piki Diaz Alberdi, went into the game with a half-goal head start. Right from the start, Team Trois Pommes put pressure into their game and went ahead with a lead of 2.5-1. Pepe Riglos’ horse ran faster, giving him the decisive, goal-scoring edge in critical duels on several occasion. However, by the second half of the second chukker, Team Badrutt’s Palace—all players perfectly in sync—were making it clear that they weren’t going to be giving up third place easily. Converting two penalty shots, Piki Diaz Alberdi brought Team Trois Pommes back into the game. But, ultimately, the formidable Irish team captain Richard Fagan and his three team mates Max Hutchinson, also Irish, Richard Le Poer Beresford and James Harper, both British, left the field with a 6-4.5 in favour of the Team Badrutt’s Palace. «What an amazing scenery!» said Pepe Riglos, who played on snow for the first time here in St. Moritz, «It was superb polo. And, if I ever get a chance, I will be happy to come back and play here again.»

The tournament was a great success with the public—more than 12’000 spectators attended the games. The debut of Reto Gaudenzi’s new organising team was a success. «We worked hard and were faced with difficult weather conditions during the preparations. Today, we are proud to have made it a perfect success; it was simply sensational. That was St. Moritz at its best, and we will be back next year.»

The teams:
Team Cartier (+16)
Jonathan Munro Ford (0, AUS), TC
Max Charlton (+7, GBR)
Jamie Morrison (+3, GBR)
Chris Hyde (+6, GBR)

Team Trois Pommes (+14)
Tutti Wolfensberger (+1, SUI), TC
Pepe Riglos (+6, ARG)
Piki Diaz Alberdi (+7, ARG)
Cedric Schweri (0, SUI)

Team BMW (+15)
Rommy Gianni (+1, ITA), TC
Paolo Netzsch (+1, GER)
Lucas Labat (+6, ARG)
Dario Musso (+7, ARG)

Team Badrutt’s Palace Hotel (+16)
Richard Fagan (+1, IRL), TC
Max Hutchinson (+3, IRL)
Richard Le Poer Beresford (+6, GBR)
James Harper (+6, GBR)