This Post is available in:

Dieser Post ist verfügbar in:

Audi Knocks Off Defending Champion Pampa Norte Biotricity To Win Triple Crown Of Polo; Jeta Castagnola MVP

Triple Crown of Polo champion Audi players Paco de Narvaez, Gonzalito Pieres, Jeta Castagnola and Marc Ganzi. © Candace Ferreira

WELLINGTON, April 16, 2023—In an emotionally-charged championship final, Audi, one of the sport‘s most successful and winningest teams, won the coveted Triple Crown of Polo Saturday at Grand Champions Polo Club.

On a hot, humid day, Audi (Marc Ganzi, 1, Jeta Castagnola, 10, Gonzalito Pieres, 9, Paco de Narvaez, 6) knocked off defending champion Pampa Norte Biotricity (Waqaas Al-Siddiq, 0, Facundo Llosa, 7, Gringo Colombres, 8, Pedro Falabella, 7), 18-14, in the season finale. 

Audi finished the tournament undefeated at 5-0.. The combined 32 goals broke the previous record of 31 for most goals scored in a single game this season.

„It feels good,“ Ganzi said. „This team is a pretty good group of guys who have played together for a long time. Jeta, Paco and I have played together three years in a row.

„Right now I want to enjoy this,“ Ganzi said. „It‘s really fun for me to win again with Gonzalito. We‘ve won everything together and to have him back on the team is really special for me and I am happy for Gonza.“

Argentine 10-goaler Jeta Castagnola was named Most Valuable Player for the second time in two tournament finals. Castagnola scored a game-high 11 goals and finished with 26 for the tournament.

Three Best Playing Pony awards were given. Irenita Serrana, played by Castagnola, was the Argentino Polo BPP. Don Ercole Hayley, played by Llosa, was the Grand Champions Polo Club BPP. Moneda, played by Falabella, was the American Polo Horse Association BPP.

Pampa Norte Biotricity opened with a 4-0 lead based on handicap against 26-goal Audi and built a 7-2 cushion. Showing no signs of panic, Audi kept its composure and quickly bounced back to trail 7-5 at the end of the chukker after de Narvaez‘s great run to goal and Castagnola scoring with 10 seconds left.

For the next five chukkers it was a hardfought physical game that featured Colombres injuring his right leg in a fourth chukker collision but returning to the game. Ganzi withstood a hard hit in the ribs and arm by Colombres‘ horse‘s head with 4:40 left in the sixth chukker but was also able to finish the game.

„It was a hard game, I‘m going to have some sore ribs in the morning,“ Ganzi said. „This team was a defending champion and we talked about treating them like a defending champion. You have to beat them because they are the ones who won the trophy last year. They play a very physical brand of polo and play very tight in close quarters. They are very clever.“

Audi tied the game at 7-7 with 2:38 left in the second chukker on another Castagnola goal before a quick goal by Falabella gave Pampa Norte Biotricity back the lead at 8-7.

Audi started taking control of the game in the third chukker. The lead changed hands three times before Pieres‘ goal with 31 seconds left gave Audi an 11-10 halftime lead.

„I think in the second and third chukkers we sort of broke their will a little bit,“ Ganzi said. „They had a little bit of a comeback in the fourth and then the game got kind of choppy.“

In the second half, Pampa Norte Biotricity was unable to control Audi‘s well-oiled rotation with Audi outscoring them 7-4 in the second half.

„In every polo match you want to try and impose your will and I think for four and a half chukkers we imposed our will,“ Ganzi said. „For a chukker and a half they got the better of us. We expected a very physical, tight defensive game and that‘s what we got.“

With Castagnola scoring from all over the field, Audi led 13-11 after the fourth chukker and 15-12 after the fifth with its open style of play. Early in the sixth chukker, Audi took a 16-12 lead with 6:41 left and Pampa Norte Biotricity never recovered.

„With this team with these three guys when we all run and hit the ball we‘re pretty effective in an open game and I didn‘t think those guys wanted to get into an open game today,“ Ganzi said. „Once we got it opened up again in the fifth I thought we had a pretty good chance to win the game. They were a good team. They played a great tournament.“

In addition to Castagnola‘s scoring barrage, Ganzi had four goals, de Narvaez had two and Pieres added one.

Llosa led Pampa Norte Biotricity with seven goals and finished with 21 for the tournament. Falabella had two goals and Al-Siddiq had one. The 22-goal team also picked up four goals on handicap.

Audi led in shots on goal, 24-13. The teams were even with throw-ins, 14-14. Pampa Norte Biotricity led in knock-ins, 6-3; fouls 10-9; and penalties scored, 5-2. Audi converted two 30-yarders and Pampa Norte Biotricity converted two 60-yarders and three 30-yarders.

Audi finished with 63 goals scored and 49 goals given up in the eight-team tournament. Pampa Norte Biotricity finished with 60 goals scored and 62 goals given up.

Audi advanced into the final with a 13-10 victory over Globalport (Mikee Romero, 0, Polito Pieres, 10, Sapo Caset, 10, Facundo Obregon, 6) and Pampa Norte Biotricity advanced with a 12-8 win over Dazos/La Fe (David Farache, 0, Nic Roldan, 8, Robi Bilbao, 6, Jero del Carril, 8).

Audi, winners of the Founders Cup, is the second team to win two WPL titles during the 2023 WPL season. Casablanca (Grant Ganzi, 3, Tomacho Pieres, 6, Barto Castagnola, 10, Jesse Bray, 7) also won two WPL titles with the All-Star Challenge and Palm Beach Open under their belts.

Audi‘s players will now have their names inscribed on the magnificent Tiffany & Co-designed trophy, comprised of three separate trophies that fit perfectly together to create an entire polo scene that is breathtaking in sterling silver.

The remaining WPL event is the April 20-23 Beach Polo World Cup Miami Beach.

The four 2023 WPL grass tournaments during the league‘s fifth season have thrilled fans, worldwide livestream viewing audiences and sponsors on world-class fields.

The WPL‘s first three champions were. Casablanca won the season-opening All-Star Challenge. Casablanca (Grant Ganzi, 3, Tomacho Pieres, 6, Barto Castagnola, 10, Jesse Bray, 7) defeated 2021 champion Richard Mille (Gilberto Sayao, 0, Gonzalito Pieres, 9, Pablo MacDonough, 10, Alejandro Novillo Astrada, 7), 14-9. Barto Castagnola was MVP.

Audi (Marc Ganzi, 1, Jeta Castagnola, 10, Nic Roldan, 8, Freddie Mannix, 7) defended its title and finished undefeated (5-0) in the Founders Cup with a thrilling 14-13 overtime victory over Richard Mille (Patricio Mayor, 0, Gonzalito Pieres, 9, Lucas James, 7, Pablo MacDonough, 10). Jeta Castagnola was MVP.

Casablanca (Grant Ganzi, 3, Tomacho Pieres, 6, Barto Castagnola, 10, Jesse Bray, 7) also won the Palm Beach Open with a 14-13 victory over Dead End (Evan White, Jr., 1, Pedro Falabella, 7, Magoo Laprida, 8/Gringo Colombres, 7, Facu Llosa, 7). Barto Castagnola was MVP.

Grand Champions, the nation‘s largest  polo club celebrating its 16th anniversary, and Santa Rita Polo Farm is the largest and most unique private 102-acre polo facility in Wellington with 212 stalls in nine self-contained barns, two tracks, five climate-controlled tack rooms, vet room, staff quarters, guest house and four polo fields with state-of-the-art underground irrigation and short work arena. The club has nine world-class fields at GCPC and four at Santa Rita.

The winter season is being live-streamed locally and worldwide on Wellington-based ChukkerTV (CTV Sports).

During the winter polo season, Grand Champions, the nation‘s largest and most innovative USPA-sanctioned polo club, nestled in the heart of the world‘s winter equestrian capital, is hosting  tournaments: 6, 8, 12, 20, and 26-goal leagues, WCT Finals, The Polo School Women‘s Weekly league play and 26-goal WPL tournaments at both Grand Champions and Santa Rita.

Grand Champions Polo Club caters to men, women and youth polo players at all levels. Its‘ expert staff can customize a complete playing experience including horses, pros and certified umpires in addition to lessons and practice sessions as part of its‘ Polo On Demand program.

The Polo School, now located at the former Pony Express facility, operates in Wellington January through May and September through November. The stand-alone USPA-sanctioned polo club, is thriving. It is dedicated to teaching polo to all ages, particularly grass roots youth. Its mission is to provide individuals opportunities in polo at every economic and ability level. November. The Polo School has nurtured several junior, men and women polo players now playing in the pro and amateur ranks since its inception.

For more information on leagues or Polo School contact Director of Operations Juan Bollini at  561-346-1099 or General Manager Cale Newman at 561-876-2930.

By Sharon Robb
Photos by Candace Ferreira

Related Topics

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *



For players only: The biggest players data base in the world. Subscribe now and receive invitations to polo tournaments all over the world.
Subscribe to POLO+10 Newsletter
Newsletter Subscriptions *(Required)


Would you like to have your own magazine for your tournament?

Feel free to contact us!
POLO+10 produces your tournament magazine.

Please write to