One before great success that of the Polo on the snow at night staged yesterday evening, Saturday 22 February, in Cortina d’Ampezzo with stage on the Sports Field of Fiames.
There could be no better debut for Italy Polo Challenge – Cortina 2020, the event promoted by Municipality of Cortina d’Ampezzo and from Italian Equestrian Sports Federation, which has rekindled the spotlight on the Queen of the Dolomites where the fascinating Polo discipline, as early as the late 1980s, began writing among the best pages of its tradition.
A frame of extraordinary impact the one that, just after sunset, welcomed the public: the peaks of Faloria and Soratis in the background and the grandeur of the over 2000 meters of altitude of Punta Fiames just behind the race ground. Change of look for the facility: football field and the surrounding athletic track perfectly covered in snow and transformed into a ‘polo pitchIs technically suitable for a match of good technical depth and great spectacle.
Public success in the grandstands with free admission and large number of guests in the beautiful lounge, with completely transparent walls and ceiling, where the two polo teams protagonists of the match closed in a tie were held: U.S. Polo Ass.n / I Profumi del Marmo, captain Alessandro Barnaba e Kep Italia / Safe Riding, captain Stefano Giansanti.
The new formula of the polo arena has been confirmed as an ideal format for a long-term project that broadens the horizons of the Olympic dream discipline.
The project started from FISE has long since been married to International Polo Federation and is to include the discipline in the Winter Games program. How much better than the departure from the next five-circle appointment in Milan-Cortina 2026?
Success also from the sports point with a match played under the banner of fair play but equally intense and especially funny as expected, given the stature of the players on the pitch: Alessandro Barnabas and the Argentine Adolfo Casabal and Nicolas Roberts for U.S. Polo Assn./I Profumi del Marmo Polo Team and Stefano Giansanti with the British Jamie Le Hardy and the Argentine Patricio Rattagan for KEP Italia / Safe Riding Polo Team.
Two by two the final result of the game, but on both sides many actions were not resulted in goals by a whisker, as shown by two posts hit by the teams and by as many, applauded, rescues on the goal line.
Many also the compelling actions and the play classy sported by polo-players such as those of Adolfo Casabal and Jamie Le Hardy, two of the strongest Polo Polo specialists with handicaps of 7 and 9, respectively, and by the two captains Stefano Giansanti and Alessandro Barnaba, the only Italians on the pitch.
The KEP Italia / Safe Riding polo team took the lead first with a mark in the first chukker of Jamie Le Hardy to which he replied Nicolas Roberts for U.S. Polo Assn./I Profumi del Marmo Polo Team.
In the second chukker Stefano Giansanti brought KEP Italia / Safe Riding forward while, after a third chukker without scoring, in the fourth and final fraction of the game it was Alessandro Barnaba to achieve the break-even goal on a thirty-yard free-kick.
Appointment with the Polo on the snow in Cortina in 2021!
photo credits: © Edoardo Mainetti