2017 U.S. Open Polo Championship®
Together with the International Polo Club Palm Beach (IPC) in Wellington, Florida, the United States Polo Association® (USPA) will host the 2017 U.S. Open Polo Championship®. From April 5 until it culminates with the final on April 23, six teams will vie for the most prestigious trophy in United States polo competition.
The U.S. Open is the final leg of the 26-goal tournaments held during the Florida High-Goal Winter Season, which regularly attracts the top players and teams in the world.
While difficult to imagine today, this grand tournament had less than auspicious beginnings. The U.S. Open Polo Championship was originally conceived as a non-handicapped alternative to the far more prestigious Senior Championship tournament. The first U.S. Open Polo Championship consisted of only two teams, the Wanderers and the Freebooters. It was held at Van Cortlandt Park in New York City’s Bronx borough. Four 15-minute chukkers were played, with a seven-minute break between each chukker.
After the inaugural U.S. Open Polo Championship in 1904, the tournament was not played again until 1910, when it grew to six teams. It resumed at Narragansett Pier, Rhode Island, for several years before relocating to what became its longtime home, Meadowbrook Polo Club in Old Westbury, New York. In 1954, the U.S. Open Polo Championship moved to Oak Brook, where it remained for 22 years, followed by an eight-year stint at Retama in San Antonio, Texas. In the late 1980s and into the 1990s, the tournament circulated among several clubs throughout the United States, including Eldorado, Lexington, Palm Beach and Royal Palm. In 2004, the tournament’s 100th anniversary, the U.S. Open Polo Championship relocated to the International Polo Club Palm Beach, where it has been held since. The public is encouraged to attend weekday games free of charge. Tickets for the featured Sunday matches at 3:00 p.m. ET can be purchased on www.internationalpoloclub.com.
The USPA Polo Network will livestream all 2017 U.S. Open Polo Championship games on uspolo.org. The U.S. Open Polo Championship Final will be broadcast on CBS television on April 30 at 2:00 p.m. ET. To learn more, please visit uspolo.org.
About the Teams
Orchard Hill will return to IPC as the defending champion. Prior winner,Valiente, will look to reclaim their title after defeating finalists Orchard Hill in 2015. Other previous winners competing this year include Coca-Cola (2002) and Audi (2009). They will be joined by Flexjet and tournament newcomer Travieso.
Orchard Hill will return with team owner Steve Van Andel and top-ranked 10-goaler Facundo Pieres, who will be joined by new additions Polito Pieres and Jota Chavanne. Julian de Lusarreta, a member of the 2016 Orchard Hill team, will be playing for Coca-Cola this year.
Valiente and team owner Bob Jornayvaz returns 10-goal superstar Adolfo Cambiaso to the line-up after playing without him in the 2016 U.S. Open Polo Championship. Diego Cavanaugh and Matias Zavalleta round the team out; they have already won the 2017 C.V. Whitney Cup and USPA Gold Cup®.
Many other recognizable names will be playing, including top-rated American players Nic Roldan and Julio Arellano, Marc and Mellissa Ganzi, Gillian Johnston, Sebastian Merlos, Miguel Novillo Astrada, Mariano Gonzales, Magoo Laprida, and Teo Calle, who will be making his U.S Open Polo Championship debut. For full team rosters, please visit uspolo.org.
Official Sponsors of the U.S. Open Polo Championship® include Town & Country (Media), Karma Auto (Automobile), NetJets (Private Aviation) and Lugano Diamonds (Jewelry).