40-Goal Outback Challenge Feb. 16 At IPC

Polo’s version of an all-star game will feature the world’s best players in the annual Outback 40-Goal Challenge presented by Nespresso on Saturday, Feb. 16 at 3 p.m. at International Polo Club Palm Beach in Wellington. This is the ninth consecutive year that IPC has hosted the Outback 40-Goal Challenge.

EFG Bank’s lineup is Adolfo Cambiaso, Sapo Caset, Pablo MacDonough and Juan Martin Nero. Cambiaso, who became the youngest player in the history of the sport to reach 10 goals back when he was just 17, is generally acknowledged as the world’s best player.

Equus & Co. lines up with Facundo Pieres, Pelon Sterling, Miguel Novillo Astrada and Gonzalito Pieres. Facundo Pieres, the middle son of the legendary Gonzalo Pieres Sr., is deemed as the world’s second-best player. Equus & Co. defeated EFG Bank 11-10 last year behind Facundo Pieres’ seven goals.

Once again, there will be a 2-point line about 80 yards from the goal for this game. “The players will be really encouraged to go for it,” Tournament Director David Offen said.

Grey Goose vodka is designing a specialty drink for the occasion, while Nespresso will offer a variety of specialty coffees at the invitation-only post-event dinner.

The first known 40-goal game was held in 1975 in Buenos Aires, Argentina. There have been at least 13 such games in the U.S.

Proceeds from the gate, a VIP dinner as well as a silent and live auction benefits the Polo Players Support Group, Inc., a nonprofit created to provide financial assistance to seriously injured or ill polo players or grooms.

So far, the Polo Players Support Group has provided more than $1.5 million to 44 seriously injured or ill players and grooms.

Auction items include a polo vacation at Casa de Campo in the Dominican Republic, a Vail Ski Chalet donated by La Casa Hermosa, a week in Argentina with 10-goaler Mariano Aguerre, a seven-day holiday in a private cottage in Ireland’s County Armagh donated by Dr. and Mrs. Stephen Seager, and a Dream Team game featuring some of the best polo players.

The polo match is open to the public. Individual tickets are $20 for upgraded lawn seating, $100 for a reserved box seat and $150 for a reserved tailgate spot. A limited number of tickets will be available at the gate on the day of the game. For ticket information, call Offen at (516) 528-3821 or the International Polo Club Palm Beach at (561) 204-5687.