Nestled in the heart of the polo capital of the world is the Grand Champions Polo Club, hosts of the third annual International Gay Polo Tournament.
The six-year-old club was built by Marc and Melissa Ganzi, hosts and presenting sponsors for the Gay Polo League’s prestigious tournament set for Saturday, April 14, 2012.
It’s been a labor of love for the Ganzi family to have a polo club in their backyard to not only enable their top-level polo teams, Audi and Piaget, to practice on, but to watch their children, Grant and Riley, grow up playing polo.
“We started Grand Champions to have off-season polo during the academic year for our children, who are 13 and 12, in order for them to stay in school,” said Melissa Ganzi, one of the sport’s top women players and chairman of the day-long GPL tournament.
“We wanted to stay home with our kids and we also wanted to play polo year-round,” Ganzi said. “The weather here in May is one of our favorite times of the year to play so we play all of May here and October and November.”
The club features two regulation-size polo fields (each big enough to fit nine football fields), room in the middle for stick-and-ball practice, restrooms and plenty of room for parking and horse trailers.
The club has a relaxed atmosphere and an easily accessible location near the intersection of Lake Worth Road and South Shore Boulevard. Fans and locals come to watch and play in weekend tournaments. Families with kids and dogs on leashes are always welcome.
“It’s like having a baseball or football field in your backyard only better,” Ganzi said.
During the week of April 3-7, the Ganzi family hosted the seventh annual Women’s Championship Tournament that was a rousing success for everyone involved including adult and junior players, sponsors and WCT founder Sunny Hale of Wellington and Goose Creek, which defended its title for the sixth time in seven years.
Following the GPL tournament, Grand Champions Polo Club has a full schedule of spring tournaments. They are the April 27-29 Challenge Cup, May 4-6 USPA Spring Classic, May 11-13 USPA Eastern Challenge, May 18-20 USPA Sun Cup and May 25-27 The Memorial presented by Piaget.
“During the season we only use our fields for practice so we can host tournaments like the WCT and GPL,” Ganzi said. “We can do things and it’s important to us. We can put them on the best field and focus on their schedule.”
Third Annual International Gay Polo Tournament Fast Facts:
Where: Grand Champions Polo Club
On the corner of South Shore Boulevard and Lake Worth Road
When: Saturday, April 14, 2012
Time: 1:00 pm to 5:00 pm
Tickets: Call: 561 753 3389 or go to gaypolotournament.blog.com/tickets/
Category: International news