The World Polo Tour (WPT) has just published the updates for 2016 with great news regarding on the famous Gold Cup of the International Polo Tournament at Santa María Polo Club in Sotogrande, celebrating its 45th edition this year.
The great competitive value of the Gold Cup has led the WPT Committee to raise this tournament up to a Grand Slam competition. This means 150 ranking points for the winner, 25 more than in the last edition, when it had an important increase too, what corroborates the excellent quality and perception of this competition.
There will be only three international competitions, outside Argentina, with a Grand Slam category in 2016:
• US Open Polo Championship, to be held from 30 March to 24 April at Palm Beach International Polo Club, Florida. Played in 26 goals.
• UK Open for the Gold Cup. From 22 June to 17 July at Cowdray Park Polo Club. Played in 22 goals.
• Gold Cup, Spain. From 14-28 August at Santa María Polo Club, Sotogrande. Played in 22 goals.
The rest of the competitions integrated in the 45th International Polo Tournament at Santa María Polo Club remain with 90 points for the Silver Cup in High Goal as a World Championship Cup and the Challenge Cup scores for the Gold and Silver Cups in Medium Goal.
45th International Polo Tournament: Gold Cup 2016
This increment comes to reward, for the second consecutive year, the importance of Santa María Polo Club’s International Polo Tournament, held in Sotogrande, where the best international teams compete every year for the desired Gold Cup.
The 45th edition of the International Polo Tournament will be held from 27 July to 28 August 2016. The expected Gold Cup final will take place that 28 August, the date already known as the day with the closing event of the summer.
Sotogrande, an international Mecca of polo
Sotogrande, located in the town of San Roque, Cádiz, can be considered the pinnacle of polo in continental Europe thanks to the excellent facilities and competitions taking place at Santa María Polo Club. This area is currently being targeted by important investors, predicting a bright future. Sotogrande SA was purchased by Cerberus/Orion private equity groups in 2014, and now La Zagaleta Limited has acquired the Valderrama Group.
The housing development Sotogrande is not only known as an international Mecca of polo, but also as a residential and luxury resort, with water sports, some of the best golf courses in Spain and in the world, such as Valderrama, La Reserva and the Real Club Sotogrande. The recent acquisition of Valderrama Group by La Zagaleta for 40 million Euros, with an expected investment in the area of over 200 million in the next 10 years, will be an excellent boost in most exclusive residential area in Spain.
The International Tournament is certainly a meeting point and every year it increases the number of attendees and activities, logging 88.891 spectators last year. The organizers also have an important tourist-residential development project around the polo activities and other equestrian disciplines.
About the World Polo Tour
The World Polo Tour was founded in 2002. There was a need to create new competitions and measuring standards for players on the international polo scene.
It is the international ranking of players. Each player gets the sum of his results in the annual competitions of those tournaments that are included in the World Polo Tour, highlighted as the best in the world.
These are the categories:
1. Grand Slam
2. World Championship Cup
3. World Polo Tour Cup
4. Challenge Cup
The “Master” category is reserved only for the Argentine Triple Crown.
The WPT takes into account the following aspects for the assessment of tournaments. They are reviewed every year, taking into account what happened in the previous season:
• Tournament’s Handicap
• Organization of the event
• Number of teams competing
• Number of attendees congregated
• Level of the partaking international players