St. Regis’ world snow polo championship returns to Aspen for third consecutive year | AspenTimes.com

St. Regis’ world snow polo championship returns to Aspen for third consecutive year

The World Snow Polo Championship took over Rio Grande Park last year with six teams competing for the title. The event kicks off today for the third year that the Aspen Valley Polo Club has organized the 15-year-old tournament, which is sanctioned by the United States Polo Association and the World Polo Tour.

One of the most exclusive sports returns to Aspen this weekend for the St. Regis' third annual World Snow Polo Championship.

The event draws some of the world's top polo players to town, including Nic Roldan, Jeff Hall, Tommy Biddle and Nacho Figueras.

Six teams are slated to compete in this year's tournament: Flex Jet, Chukker.TV, One Sandy Lane, the St. Regis, U.S. Polo Association and Audi.

The sport is played in only two cities in the world — Aspen and St. Moritz, Switzerland, where snow polo started in 1985.

Snow polo is a modified version of the traditional game, with teams consisting of three players instead of four.

The ball also is larger and lighter in snow polo than in regular polo, and the horses wear cleated shoes to provide them with snow traction.

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The first round of games kicks off Thursday from 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Aspen Valley Polo Club Arena in Carbondale.

On Friday and Saturday, the action will take place in Rio Grande Park at 415 Rio Grande Place.

The playoff games for fifth and sixth place will take place Friday between noon and 3 p.m.

Saturday's action, from 1 to 4 p.m., will involve the final and subsidiary games and trophy presentation.

The St. Regis also will bring back its heated VIP tent this year, which offers guests an open bar and an extensive brunch that will include delicacies such as smoked salmon, mini quiches, chicken and waffles, dungeness crab cake, butternut squash shooters and quail eggs Benedict, along with sandwiches and tea in the afternoon, said St. Regis marketing manager Meredith Schurch.

"Polo is one of our passions here at the St. Regis, and the event is a very unique experience for the town of Aspen," Schurch said.

CATCH A LIVE STREAM OF THE WHOLE TOURNAMENT ALL THREE DAYS ON CHUKKER.TV

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