After a record-breaking 2017, the 8th Annual Bentley Scottsdale Polo Championships: Presented by Talking Stick Resort and taking place on November 10-11, 2018 will include many new elements, old favorites and a first-time appearance by Ralph Lauren model and world famous polo player Nacho Figueras.
Figueras will be playing in Scottsdale thanks to the Aspen Valley Polo Club, owned by Marc and Melissa Ganzi. Aspen Valley is the event’s 3-time defending champion with prospects bolstered for a fourth title thanks to a polo player known the world over.
This year will also see the Scottsdale debut of Memo Gracida, widely considered to be one of the top two players in the history of polo as well as teams from Italy, Malibu, Miami and Wales. They will join the Arizona Polo Club, Polo Azteca and Work To Ride, the first all African-American high school polo champions in American history. The inspirational story of Work To Ride has been featured on 60 Minutes, HBO and ESPN. Their appearance in this year’s event is being made possible by a grant from Safeway/Albertsons.
The festivities wouldn’t be complete without the return of the Wales Polo Team, led by Captain Ricky Cooper and one of Europe’s finest players, Pete Webb. They will be joined by Ashley Busch, who made her Scottsdale debut last year. Busch is a long-time polo player, model and global brand ambassador for the USPA and wife of NASCAR Champion Kurt Busch.
Saturday will again have four matches with two on Sunday including the final match, The International, which will feature the best players from the weekend playing each other for the highest goal match of the event. It will be preceded by a “Battle of the Sexes” match in honor of Sunny Hale, the greatest female polo player of all time. Hale played in the Scottsdale event on two occasions.
To ensure that you get to see your favorites, be sure to check out the complete event schedule here.
Aspen Valley Polo Club
The Aspen Valley Polo Club will be making its second return to Scottsdale. The club is owned by Marc and Melissa Ganzi, one of America’s most prominent polo families. Aspen Valley Polo Club hosts the annual Piaget World Snow Polo Championships in December. The high-end event is one of the hottest social events in Aspen, the only American city to host a snow polo tournament. The final, which attracted some of the world’s top players, was televised by NBC Sports Network with Wellington-based Chukker TV’s Melissa Ganzi providing exclusive content on its website including the tournament draw at St. Regis. Visit www.aspenvalleypoloclub.com to learn more about The Polo Party’s defending champs.
Arizona Polo Club
Join them at the Scottsdale Horsemen Park at WestWorld polo field during their 2018-2019 season, and watch or participate in some exciting polo matches. For a schedule of upcoming matches, visit www.arizonapolo.com/polo-cares-inc/
Centtrip Wales Polo Team
Reigning champions of the 2013 Bentley Scottsdale Polo Championships, the Centtrip Wales Polo Team, are back again to regain their title. It has been over 100 years since a team represented Wales under its UK Governing Body and we are all delighted and honored to be representing our country. We would like to thank His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales for supporting the team and association by agreeing to be its 1st Patron for a 5 year term. We now operate with full UK Governing Body (HPA, Hurlingham Polo Association) recognition and as such are only the second team in the United Kingdom after England to be recognized. As an Associate Member to the HPA we are governed by the United Kingdom governing body as well as by a committee and Chairman who represents the interests of the team and association to the HPA and other official bodies. To learn more about the Centtrip Wales Polo Team, visit www.walespoloteam.com.
Italy Polo Team
Team details coming soon!
Palm Beach Polo Club
Polo in the Palm Beach area fittingly began in the roaring 20’s. In the past nearly 100 years the polo fields have been an intersecting point and place of escape for the affluent, entertainers, and royals from around the world. The synergy of “great polo” and “a great party” has been appreciated here for generations, and The Palm Beach Team is honored to participate in the World’s Biggest Polo Party, The Bentley Scottsdale Polo Championships!
Returning to this year’s Bentley Scottsdale Polo Championships, Polo Azteca is one of the largest polo clubs in the Southwest. Their new arena on Carefree Hwy and 14th Street in Phoenix has been updated substantially over the last 3 years with improved footing to allow for all weather play. For more information on Polo Azteca visit www.poloazteca.com.
Las Divinas Ladies
The Las Divinas team was founded in Scottsdale in 2016 as a venture to open up more polo opportunities to women in the valley in parallel with the Polo Party. The team made its debut in 2016 at the Bentley Polo Championships with a first of its kind all female sunset match at the event. The 2018 team will be Pamela Flanagan – Attorney, model and Polo Pony Rescue activist, Sheryl Sick – business development executive, US Polo Association Pacific Northwest Governor and long time Polo player with Natalie Grancharov Camacho, a Scottsdale local, founder of AZ Polo Clubs Womens League and Las Divinas Polo. The ladies will play against an all mens team on Sunday, Nov 11 in honor of Sunny Hale.
Work To Ride
Founded in 1994, Work to Ride (WTR) is a 501 c3, non-profit community-based prevention program that aids disadvantaged urban youth though constructive activities centered on horsemanship, equine sports and education. Work to Ride provides youngsters with a positive outlet for their energy and an alternative to negative “street” activities. Participants develop discipline, responsibility, and life skills through training, riding, and performing horse care and barn management chores. They also develop confidence, self-esteem, and the skills necessary to complete successfully in their chosen activities, including on Work to Ride’s own top-performing polo team.