The owners of the snow
For the third season in a row, the Snow Polo World Cup St. Moritz has its same Champion. The duo of Italian patron Rommy Gianni and Argentine Dario Musso have earned their hat-trick of titles for this special tournament, in Switzerland’s Grisons.
Back in 2016, Gianni and Musso played with Luciano Vazquez and Frankie Menendez in Team Maserati. In 2017, now renamed to Team Cartier, they were joined by the British Charlie Wooldridge and Chris Hyde. They retained Hyde this season, given he's an expert in reduced-field polo, and added Juan Cruz Greguoli. Even with the replacement, the team remained strong.
Vying for the title of this tournament, originally created by Reto Gaudenzi, and now in its 34th edition, Team Cartier kicked off their campaign on Friday 26th, defeating Badrutt's Palace Hotel (Melissa Ganzi, Tito Gaudenzi, Alejandro Novillo Astrada and Juan Bollini) 5-2. A day later, they defeated Team Maserati (Zhanna Bandurko/Raya Sidorenko, Gerardo Mazzini, Hissam al Hyder and Robert Strom) 3.5-2. Even though the final, on Sunday 28, saw them up against the same opponents as 24 hours earlier, Maserati, the match itself was much closer. After a very tight match, team Cartier's Red Devils won in the end 4.5-4. It was Hyde's seventh personal title in St. Moritz with different teams, Musso won the Most Valuable Player award and his mare Zedan the Best Playing Pony blanket. Understandably, the Best Playing Patron was Gianni himself.
The subsidiary La Martina Cup saw Azerbaijan Land of Fire (Elchin Jamalli, Andrés Laplacette, Adrián Laplacette and Rashad Hasanov) just barely managing to defeat Badrutt's Palace Hotel by 5-4.
Quotes from the Snow
Reto Gaudenzi (CEO of Snow Polo World Cup)
“God must be a polo player. Everything was perfect to live another great snow polo event. The snow was perfect, sun has been warming the thousands of spectators gathered and every game was a big show. It was an amazing competition.”
Juan Cruz Greguoli (Team Cartier)
“I'm very happy to have won… (está respondiendo; lo completamos más tarde)"
Melissa Ganzi (Badrutt's Palace Hotel)
“I was the first woman to come to St. Moritz to play snow polo and it’s so amazing to see so many lady players now showing an interest and taking part. I feel like I had a little part to play in that – it’s a great feeling.”
Gianni Rommy (Cartier)
"Winning three in a row was very special. It was a complicated year for me with work and had a lot of pressure.Work ended up going well and I wanted the new Year to begin with a Great winning!"