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In 1998 Peter Higgins met Glen Holden, then president of the Federation of International Polo (FIP), in Los Angeles.
Then, in 2001 when the World Polo Championship was held in Werribee Australia Peter was inspired! He met with Marcos Uranga, Founder of FIP, and Glen Holden, who was still FIP president and expressed his desire to host the World Polo Championship one day.
In 2005 the fields were developed in Richmond NSW and in 2010 the primary field was named the ‘International’.
In 2012, Peter spoke with Nicholas J.A. Colquhoun-Denvers Esq., then president of the Hurlingham Polo Association, about his aspirations to host the World Polo Championship one day.
Then, in March 2015 an invitation came from FIP. It was an invitation to register our interest to put in a formal bid.
Subsequently, Peter had discussions with the Australian Polo Federation, New South Wales Polo Association (NSWPA) and the local polo community about Sydney Polo Club putting in a formal bid.
In July 2015, Peter Higgins approached Destination NSW about the opportunity for a partnership.
The presentation team was gathered of, Noel Campbell, Australian Ambassador to Argentina, Ian McDuie, past president of the NSWPA, Paul Sullivan, Peter, Rebecca and Riley Higgins.
Sydney Polo Club in association with the NSW State Government and the United States Polo Association both presented their bids to a combined Executive Committee and Council of Administration of FIP on Wednesday 9th of December. The following day the both bids were again presented to the General Assembly. In true Australian style, the pitch was given in two languages, English and Spanish. There were also small toy Australian animals and Australian flags for the audience.
On 10th December 2015, it was announced that the votes were overwhelmingly in favour of the Sydney Polo Club, who had been awarded the rights to host the World Polo Championship. It was noted that the exceptional attention to detail and the flamboyant sales pitch had the audience enthralled.
Minister for Trade, Tourism and Major Events and Minister for Sports Stuart Ayres said “The World Polo Championship is the sport’s most prestigious event, and I’m thrilled Sydney has been chosen by the FIP as the host of the 2017 event. This is yet another major sporting event secured exclusively for our State by Destination NSW,” Mr Ayres said.
Member for Hawkesbury Dominic Perrottet said the event delivers part of the NSW Government’s election commitment to grow tourism in the Hawkesbury region.