Midhurst polo stars set to shine in the Cowdray Gold Cup

Gold Cup action last year
Gold Cup action last year

Four young English polo pros are tipped to star in the 2017 Jaeger-LeCoultre Gold Cup competition for the British open championship which gets started next week (June 27) on the Cowdray Park polo lawns.

One of the favourites of the 2016 crowd, the El Remanso team, based at Ambersham was brought together by Charlie Hanbury, joined again by Ollie Cudmore playing off five goals, England captain James Beim from Midhurst (6 goals) and James Harper also from Midhurst who started playing with Goodwood pony club (6 goals).

Also based at Ambersham is Charlie’s brother, George Hanbury, who has joined with Canadian 8 goal patron Fred Mannix Jnr in bringing the Sommelier team into the 2017 Jaeger LeCoultre Gold Cup.

Stabled at the Cowdray Estate for a fourth year is American businessman Michael Bickford’s La Indiana team.

There are ten teams competing for the coveted cup this year and last year’s winners, King Power, will be trying for the hat-trick.

Once again the outstanding 10 goal players Gonzalito and Facundo Pieres will join ‘Top’ Srivaddhanaprabha’s line-up. Adolfo Cambiaso, still considered the world’s number 1 player, has been snapped up by patron Ben Soleimani for his RH Polo team.

A trio of French teams re-enter the British Open: Edouard Carmignac and his Talandracas side have entered for many years but Monsieur Carmignac still longs to take home the most coveted trophy in polo. He has retained ‘Sapo’ Caset from his 2016 side but has added 10 goal player David ‘Pelon’ Stirling along with young English player Jack Hyde playing off 3 goals. Jean François Decaux, who won the Gold Cup in 2009, returns with his La Bamba de Areco side unchanged from 2016, comprising Cristian Laprida, Diego Cavanagh and Rodrigo Rueda Jnr. Corinne Ricard, the only woman playing in the Gold Cup, re-enters with her Murus Sanctus side and welcomes 10 goal player Hilario Ulloa into the team to play alongside South African Dirk Van Reenen and Argentine Facundo Sola.

Making their debuts in the 2017 Jaeger-LeCoultre Gold Cup are one of Dubai’s leading businessmen, Mohammed Al Habtoor, with his Habtoor team and Italian patron Alessandro Bazzoni with his Monterosso side.

Zahra Kassim-Lakha, Director UK Market and Global Strategy says: “Jaeger-LeCoultre has enjoyed a rich history with polo ever since the creation of the Reverso watch in 1931. As we celebrate eleven years of partnership with Cowdray Park Polo Club, first as Official Time Keeper in 2006, and since 2015 as sponsor of the Jaeger-LeCoultre Gold Cup for the British Open Polo Championship, I wish all the players taking part in this year’s tournament a brilliant four weeks of sport and achievement.”

Jaeger-LeCoultre and Cowdray have started a new tradition. Every year four specially engraved Reverso watches honour the Jaeger-LeCoultre Gold Cup winners. Engraved with the date of the tournament and the revered Gold Cup, these wonderful prizes encapsulate the longstanding relationship between Jaeger-LeCoultre and Cowdray Park Polo Club. Once again in 2017, the four Gold Cup specially-engraved Reversos will add a new milestone to Jaeger LeCoultre’s rich heritage and history. Following the Jaeger-LeCoultre special exhibition “Reverso: wrist-style since 1931” held at Christie’s from May 30th to June 9th, the style of Reverso plays once again the leading role at the British Open Polo Championship.

The Jaeger-LeCoultre Gold Cup for the British Open Polo Championship opens next Tuesday (June 27) when the Carlos Gracida Memorial Trophy will be played.

Quarter Finals take place over the weekend of July 15/16, Semi Finals on Wednesday July 19 and the final on Sunday July 23.

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