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Pictures courtesy of luxury Scotch whisky brand, Royal Salute, who supported this year’s Snow World Cup

When the sun is shining the best of Britain’s polo grounds are the place to spot celebrities, flocking to get their fix of champagne, treading-in and golden polo players from across the globe.

But the 31st running of the Snow Polo World Cup in St Moritz, which took place last weekend (30 January-1 February), is proof that plummeting temperatures can’t dampen the sport’s glamour.

What is it?

St. Moritz claims to be the “home of snow polo” — having hosted the first Snow Polo World Cup in 1985. It is the only high goal polo tournament played on snow and the action takes place in the unique setting of the frozen lake in the Engadine Valley, Switzerland.

The glam-factor

Hollywood names, European royalty and fur-clad VIPs descend on the resort for a weekend of gourmet food,  first-class hotels, a social whirlwind — and of course the top-class sporting action. Think private jets, golden horse statues and free-flowing champagne.

Who took part?

The four teams vying for this year’s coveted Cartier Trophy were:

Cartier: Jonathan Munro Ford, Max Charlton, Chris Hyde and Jamie Morrison

Trois Pommes: Tutti Wolfensberger, Cedric Schweri, Pepe Riglos and Piki Diaz Alberdi

BMW: Rommy Gianni, Paolo Netzsch, Dario Musso and Lucas Labat

Badrutt’s Palace Hotel: Richard Fagan, Max Hutchinson, Richard Le Poer and James Harper

Who came out on top?

Munro Ford’s Cartier seized the title for the third time on Sunday (1 February), beating Rommy Gianni’s BMW 10-2.5.

Did you know…

  • More than 12,000 watched the games over the weekend.
  • Players arm themselves with specially designed thermal gloves and underwear for the games — it’s a far cry from the balmy temperatures of Argentina at this time of year.
  • Horses have two studs in each foot rather than one in each hind foot, as they would for grass polo — which eliminates slipping.
  • A brightly-coloured, inflatable ball is used. Its lightness is more susceptible to the wind, adding an extra challenge for the players.
  • The action takes place on about five inches of snow, packed on top of the lake’s ice.

How can you get a slice of the action next year?

Catch the action in 2016 from 29-31 January. Visit www.snowpolo-stmoritz.com to find out more.