BY JOE PAVIA
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Request for Interest: Ottawa Curling Club Ice Technician
The Ottawa Curling Club (OCC) requires the services of an Ice Technician starting the upcoming 2014-2015 curling season with the possibility for a multi-year contract (details to be discussed).
About the Ottawa Curling Club:
The OCC is one of the oldest and most prestigious clubs in the country, boasting everything from a vibrant getting started league to Canadian and world champion curlers and coaches as members. The membership is engaged and competitive while enjoying one of the friendliest social atmospheres around.
The OCC is a busy, full-service, professionally managed curling facility in the downtown core. This five-sheet club has a one draw morning program followed by a two hour practice period and three evening draws Monday to Friday. Saturday includes a morning league with two draws followed by a full slate of public rentals into the evening. Sunday is the busiest day with 6 draws from 9 AM to 9 PM.
Member amenities include a full service kitchen as well as an independently operated pro shop.
The Ice Technician will be contracted to direct the ice making and ice maintenance operations of the club; directly oversee the preventive maintenance program for the physical plant; and consult on related aspects of the ice house/building.
Summary of duties:
- Maintain the ice daily for approximately 30 weekly draws plus additional public rentals.
- Prepare the ice for all curling events such as league play, bonspiels and special events.
- Hire, train, administer and supervise your own ice crew (the OCC can offer names of candidates)
- Meet weekly with the Manager and/ or Ice Director.
- In conjunction with the Manager, communicate with the membership about ice conditions.
- Maintain the Maintenance Log Book for the Machine Room equipment.
- Perform preventive maintenance procedures as required.
- Maintain on-ice member amenities (including drinking water, tissues, and cleaning brushes).
- Ensure catwalks are clean and tidy and ice equipment is stored properly.
- Install ice in early September for opening league play usually the last Monday in September.
- Install ice markings in consultation with the Ice Director.
- Shut down the ice plant and clean rink area after season concludes at the end of April.
- Possess a Level 3 Ice Technician’s certification.
- Produce verifiable work record that validates your qualifications.
Ice Technician is responsible to the Board of Directors and reports to the Ice Director. Ice Technician works with the Club Manager to determine ice usage requirements and maintenance schedules.
Written applications must be received on or before 31 March 2014. Your application must include:
- Cover letter with your concept of member service and communicating about ice conditions.
- Resume detailing your ice making experience including references.
- Your contract expectations (price quote not expected at this stage).
Successful applicants will be sent an information package and asked to submit a complete bid. The shortlisted bidders will be interviewed by the Ice Contract Evaluation Committee.
Applications should be sent by email, post, or fax Attn: Peter Glover, Ice Director.
The Ottawa Curling Club
440 O’Connor Street, Ottawa ON K2P 1W4
Telephone: (613) 234-4119 | Fax: (613) 235-2178
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OCA president Ian McGillis, was in Ottawa Saturday to oversee Colts zone action.
The Ottawa Sun in the person of this scribe, Joe Pavia, met with McGillis. The main thrust of the conversation with the president was a personal attack on myself.
At first McGillis refused to answer any questions saying we should concentrate on the positive. When I asked what the positives were he said he meant the positives on the ice. He then criticized me for not even mentioning Team Homan in my column last Wednesday. When I said her accomplishment at the Scotties was covered by the Sun on Monday that elicited “I guess I read a different article.”
He then told me that he wouldn’t say anything because it would only end up in the paper.He then castigated me for publishing the email he sent me two days ago. I guess he never realized I worked for the Sun.
I asked him how this dispute showed the positive side of Ontario curling if curlers are denied the possibility to advance to national competition. He replied that I should ask the CCA that question.
When asked if he had received feedback from his members he said yes. When asked what he said to them he remarked that the response was between him and the members.
When asked what is so secret that his members can’t even know what is going on, the president said it was between the OCA and CCA.
At this point there was no need to ask any more questions as the only info that I would get was how bad I was.
He did answer one question I asked. “Yes the Colts is a double knock out.”
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After weeks of cajoling, the Ontario Curling Association finally broke its silence on Wednesday February 12. In a response to the Ottawa Sun, OCA president Ian McGillis wrote: ” It has always been the OCA position that we will not put this issue in the
public domain and people should focus on the game of curling and the achievements of the excellent curlers in the Country (sic).”
Well how is that for a response to enlighten the curlers of Ontario as to just what the situation is!
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BY JOE PAVIA
It has now gone too far.
The spat between the Ontario Curling Association and Canadian Curling Association is escalating. The CCA had given the OCA until Feb. 10 to apologize for their actions or suffer further consequences, accoring to Bob Weeks, editor of the Ontario Curling Report.
The Sun contacted the CCA and OCA Tuesday to see if the matter had been settled.
The OCA did not respond. And CCA CEO Greg Stremlaw would only say, “I will simply advise that the Ontario Curling Association is fully aware of the conditions of their not-in-good-standing parameters and guidelines related to such. It would be inappropriate for me to comment on what the OCA has or has not done until the CCA board of governors has a chance to review and make decisions in accordance to our bylaws.”
Just what does the OCA have to apologize for?
According to Weeks, the OCA president, Ian McGillis, sent a letter to board members and stake holders that outlined deficiencies in CCA management. The CCA supposedly feels the OCA is dysfunctional.
Reports say the CCA investigated McGillis’ charges and found no evidence he was correct. That is where the apology ultimatum came from.
Sources told the Sun that stakeholders within the OCA were busy last summer attempting to oust executive director Doug Bakes, who announced in December that he will resign this June.
If no apology is received, a March 10 meeting with member associations will kick the OCA out of the CCA thereby denying their players participation in national competitions such as the Brier and Scotties.
It is now time for the grass roots to flex their muscles. All clubs should send a letter to both bodies asking for the situation to be resolved immediately. The entire board of the OCA should also resign for allowing this situation to even happen. It would also be nice for the OVCA to put some pressure on the two associations.
The strong youth program at Huntley has produced a bantam provincial champion. Kayla MacMillan skipped her team of Sarah Daviau, Lindsay Dubue and Marcia Richardson to a 6-1 record. They also advance to the Ontario Winter games. The boy’s side was won by Jeff Wanless from Mississauga. His third and lead were Joe and David Hart respectively, the sons of Richard Hart. The fact Richard had to take a coaching course no doubt had to help the team clinch their undefeated record of 7-0. Dad Richard coached them to 5-0 then left because he had Sportsnet commitments. The Brian Lewis rink is headed to provincial seniors competition again. They won the Travelers regions on Sunday. Cheryl McBain took the women’s side. Bryan Cochrane and Dianne Wylie won the B side.
BRIER FIELD SET
Sunday saw the crowning of the final seven provincial champions headed to the Tim Hortons Brier. They are John Morris (B.C.), Kevin Koe (Alta.), Jamie Koe (NT/YK), Jeff Currie (N. Ontario), James Grattan (N.B.), Eddie MacKenzie (P.E.I.) and Jamie Murphy (N.S.). Morris now matches his father and Ryan Fry as the only players to represent three provinces at the Brier. The west coast skip has come out of Ontario, Alberta and now BC.
CRYSTAL GENEROUS HEART
The women at the Crystal Heart raised plenty of money for the Heart and Stroke Foundation this year – $62,097. The open event winning rink was Tara Holland, Maelane Hums, Ruth Desjardins and Barb Truscott. Second event winner was Susan Schmidt. Third event winner Brenda Muir and fourth event was won by Sandy Muttart. Betty Bush with Joanne Miller, Joanne Gizzi and Karen Peters repeated as the senior main event winner. Event two went to Bernadette Fleming while Donna Tallon won the last senior event.
The Ottawa team of Conall MacMillan, Patrick Gratton, Chris White and Kimberly Gorin earned their Special Olympics Ontario title Feb. 1 at the Travelers Tankard.
As one of their activities to celebrate the Rideau’s 125th anniversary, the club is inviting everyone to sign up for the Rideau CC Enduro 125. Your team will be curling for 125 ends! Organizers will form 6 to 8 person teams. The entry fee is $45 per person which includes the curling, breakfast, lunch and prizes. People are asked to get pledges for the Ottawa Humane Society, another institution marking its 125th anniversary. Enduro runs March 8. Call 613 232-9665 for information.
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Feb. 10, 5 a.m. (TSN) — Canada vs. China (Bingyu Wang)
Feb. 11, midnight (CBC) — Canada vs. Sweden (Margaretha Sigfridsson)
Feb. 12, 5 a.m. (TSN) — Canada vs. Great Britain (Eve Muirhead)
Feb. 13, midnight (CBC) — Canada vs. Denmark (Lene Nielsen)
Feb. 13, 10 a.m. (Sportsnet) — Canada vs. Switzerland (Mirjam Ott)
Feb. 15, midnight (CBC) — Canada vs. Japan (Ayumi Ogasawara)
Feb. 15, 10 a.m. (TSN2) — Canada vs. Russia (Anna Sidorova)
Feb. 16, 5 a.m. (CBC) — Canada vs. U.S.A. (Erika Brown)
Feb. 17, 10 a.m. (TSN2) — Canada vs. South Korea (Ji-Sun Kim)
Feb. 10, midnight (CBC) — Canada vs. Germany (Johnny Jahr)
Feb. 10, 10 a.m. (TSN) — Canada vs. Switzerland (Sven Michel)
Feb. 11, 5 a.m. (CBC) — Canada vs. Sweden (Niklas Edin)
Feb. 12, 10 a.m. (TSN2) — Canada vs. Russia (Andrey Drozdov)
Feb. 13, 5 a.m. (TSN2) — Canada vs. Denmark (Johnny Frederiksen)
Feb. 14, midnight (CBC) — Canada vs. Norway (Thomas Ulsrud)
Feb. 15, 5 a.m. (TSN2) — Canada vs. Great Britain (David Murdoch)
Feb 16, midnight (CBC) — Canada vs. U.S.A. (John Shuster)
Feb. 16, 10 a.m. (TSN2) — Canada vs. China (Rui Liu)
Tiebreakers, if required, will be played on Feb. 18. The women’s semifinals are at 2 p.m. (Sochi time) on Feb. 19, while the men’s semifinals are at 7 p.m., also on Feb. 19.
The women’s bronze-medal game (12:30 p.m.) and gold-medal game (5:30 p.m.) will be played on Feb. 20, with the men’s bronze-medal game (12:30 p.m.) and gold-medal game (5:30 p.m.) on Feb. 21.
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By Joe PaviaOlympic curling starts Feb. 10. Will Canada win medals?
Team Brad Jacobs and Team Jennifer Jones will have their work cut out for them as they face teams composed of professional curlers. Except for the U.S. and Denmark, virtually all the countries competing list their members as professional curlers.
The men’s teams are: Canada, China, Denmark, Germany, Great Britain, Norway, the Russian Federation, Sweden, Switzerland and the U.S. The women’s lineup is: Canada, China, Denmark, Great Britain, Japan, Korea, the Russian Federation, Sweden, Switzerland and the U.S.
The curlers will be playing a nine-game round-robin in the Ice Cube Curling Centre. Four semi-finalists will emerge with the top-ranked round robin team playing the fourth while the second and third place teams play each other. The semi-final winners then go on play the gold medal final (women – Thursday, Feb 20., men — Friday, Feb. 21) while the losers face each other for bronze medals.
Most of the countries were direct qualifiers to the Games except for four teams that qualified at a December World Curling Federation event. They were Germany and the U.S. on the men’s side and China and Japan on the women’s side. The Russian teams are there because they are hosting.
Of the 100 curlers, 41 have Olympic experience. Norway’s Torger Nergaard, Russia’s Nkeiruka Ezekh, Mirjam Ott from Switzerland and the U.S.’s Debbie McCormick are four-time Olympians. Nergaard boasts a gold and silver medal while Ott has two silvers.
While the Canadian broadcast rights holder is CBC most of the curling will be on Sportsnet and Sportsnet ONE. Mike Harris, Joan McCusker and Colleen Jones will cover the curling with Bruce Rainnie handling the play by play. Kevin Martin will be the curling analyst for NBC Sports.
Of all the sports represented at the winter games, the curlers skew the oldest with the average age of 31.9 years.
Olympic rules don’t allow medals to be awarded to coaches only to athletes including alternates. However, both Canadian athletes and coaches get money for medal finishes. Athletes receive $20,000 for gold, $15,000 for silver and $10,000 for bronze. Coaches earn $10,000 for gold, $7,500 for silver and $5,000 for bronze.
SCOTTIES and BRIER
The Montreal Scotties is attracting plenty of Ottawa spectators but attendance is much lower than the Kingston Scotties last year. By draw seven the attendance was about half of Kingston. More Tim Hortons Brier bound teams have been determined – Greg Balsdon (ON), Jeff Stoughton (MB), Brad Gushue (NL), Steve Laycock (SK) and Jean-Michel Menard (QE).
In the Gore Mutual Schoolboy and Schoolgirl regions, the winners were: 1A Sarah Daviau and Trevor Ferrier, B – Sierra Sutherland and Pascal Michaud. OCA Senior mixed zone winners were: 1A – Dave Stanley, B – Ken Sullivan, 3A – Dwayne Lowe, B – Tom Watters; 4A – Andy Palmer, B – Terry Corbin. John Shea Insurance Mixed zone victors were: 1A – Don Bowser, B – Chris Gardner; 2A – Celeste Butler-Rohland, B- Jesse Ruppell; 3A – David Cormier, B – Mike McLean; 4A – Wayne Williams, B – Daryl Latimer.
The AMI Canadian Vision Impaired championships continue until this Friday afternoon at the Ottawa. This is the 10th anniversary of the event where seven provinces plus Team Canada participate “¦ The 16th annual Crystal Heart Curling Classic begins tomorrow until Sunday. This is largest women’s ‘spiel in eastern Canada with 96 rinks in two categories. Last year the curlers raised $65,066.85 for the Heart and Stroke Foundation — a total of $521,000 over the years “¦ Sportsnet carries the Alberta and B.C. men’s provincial championship rounds this Saturday and Sunday.
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A number of our university aged members play for university varsity teams.
The students are left to fundraise for themselfs. Please read below for your chance to help through a silent action.
In support of the Carleton Ravens Curling Program
Treat your family or friends to a night out with the Ottawa 67′s
Ottawa 67′s vs. Peterborough Pete’s
Canadian Tire Center
Tuesday February 4, 7:00 pm
Suite 112B – 16 tickets
3 parking passes
$200 Pizza & Pop
To bid please email:
Deadline: Noon, Friday January 31
Bidders will be advised when bid is submitted if bid is accepted (beats existing bid). All bidders will be advised of highest bid Friday Jan. 31, 9:00 am.
After this time only accepted bids will be advised so keep trying.
Thank you for your support,
Carleton Ravens Curling Program
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By Joe Paviaill this be Glenn Howard’s ninth?Howard lead Craig Savill of Manotick says the team is pumped for the Tankard next week in Smiths Falls.”Our showing at the (Olympic) Trials was a real disappointment so we can’t wait to right the ship, starting at the Ontario provincials,” said.
Howard’s three losses and second place finish at last year’s Tankard means he can be beaten, but by who?
Of the two Ottawa entries, Bryan Cochrane from City View has beaten Howard before. This is Cochrane’s 16th Tankard. He is also playing with two young sharp shooters in the Camm brothers (Mat and Jason) while his second, Brad Kidd, has a raft of provincial appearances.
The Mark Homan team from the Ottawa is nothing but determined. Homan, the older brother of Team Canada’s Rachel Homan, has been putting his rink through daily practices. He has a provincial junior banner — with John Morris — and second Paul Winford has competed in a previous Tankard.
Many of the other teams are populated by young players who have multiple men’s provincial appearances. Mark Bice, John Epping, Rob Rumfeldt and Jake Higgs know what to do to win. Rob Lobel has finished as high as fourth in this event having played in it twice. Rookie Tankard skips Jake Walker, Craig Van Ymeren and Shannon Beddows will have a lot to get used to quickly. The first two are used to arena ice. Walker skipped his junior rink to win the national championship in 2010. Van Ymeren was his vice. Cannington’s Beddows actually went into the playdowns for the Travelers Tankard because there weren’t enough teams in zone 5.
Who’ll still be standing the last weekend? My prediction is Howard, Rumfeldt, Cochrane and Higgs.
The Travelers Tankard is taking place at the Smiths Falls Memorial Community Centre from Jan. 27 to Feb. 2. Daily draws are at 2 p.m. and 7 with three draws on Wednesday.
Team Jennifer Jones will be in attendance one of the days to practice. On Feb. 1, the Special Olympics provincial finals will take place with the Ottawa team, skipped by Conall MacMillan, taking part. Ticket packages are available as are single draw tickets. If you purchase single draw tickets at the arena it is cash only.
Rogers is showing all the games on its digital channels 368 and 369. Sportsnet is expected to carry the semi-final and finals.
In Val-d’Or, Que., Gatineau’s Jean-Michel Menard is going to his seventh Brier after winning the provincial final on his 38th birthday Sunday. In the same location, Ottawa’s Melissa Gannon played third for Allison Ross’s Montreal squad to advance to the Scotties in Montreal. Ross represented Quebec last year as well.
The Ottawa area has another provincial champion. Brian Lewis, Chris Lewis, David Staples and Kyle Thompson captured the OCA’s Fairfield Marriott Challenge.
OVCA MIXED SPIEL
The Main Event was won by the junior team from Quinte of Mac Calwell, Erin Butler, Morgan Calwell and Jordan Mark. They defeated last year’s champion team skipped by Spencer Cooper. The senior event was captured by Dave Stanley while Michel Barsalou took the Colts division. Other Main event winners were A. Bugg, Chris Gardner and V. Sheppard. Senior event winners were Norm Clement and Richard Faguy.
The Carleton Place Leather Works spiel was won by Lee Mantha, John Phillips, Ted Phillips, Stephanie Phillips and Melanie Conti.
The finals of the M&M Meat Shops Canadian Juniors will be seen on TSN at 3 pm. The women’s final is Saturday while the men play Sunday. Curling will be featured on the Weather Network’s national morning show Thursday.
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BY JOE PAVIA
Time is not on their side.
When you’re Janice and Doug Kreviazuk and you parent three high performance curlers, time runs out on you. They now have two reasons for going to Montreal’s Scotties. Middle daughter Lynn just won Ontario while oldest daughter Alison plays on Team Canada.
“Janice and I live vicariously through our children,” said the proud dad. “We look at this as our vacation. We can’t get anymore pleasure than watching our children at these events.”
But both parents have used all their vacation time, sick days, flexible days — everything. Doug works for the Canadian Payments Association while Janice is a school administrator.
“We aren’t out of money but out of time,” said Janice. “We aren’t going to the Continental Cup for instance because we just don’t have the time.” Team Homan is competing in that event.
The couple attended the Olympic trials in December, came home for four days then flew to Italy where youngest daughter Cheryl competed in the university games from Dec. 12 to 20. After a Christmas rest, it was off to the Sault for the eight days of the Ontario Scotties, then its Montreal’s Scotties. Mrs. Kreviazuk is taking an unpaid leave of absence to be in Montreal while Mr. Kreviazuk can only attend on weekends.
But who do they cheer for? Both parents don’t mind when the girls play each other. Doug feels “One is going to win and one is going to lose. There is not a … thing I can do about it.”
Janice hates when they play against each other to eliminate a team. “Lynn played Cheryl three years ago in the final of the junior provincials. One of them was not going to nationals. That was the hardest game I ever watched.”
Except for Quebec, the Scotties field is determined. They are Homan – Team Canada, Kim Dolan PE, Stefanie Lawton SK, Heather Smith NS, Kesa Van Osch BC, Val Sweeting AB, Andrea Crawford NB, Heather Strong NL, Allison Flaxey ON and Sara Koltun NWT. Ottawa’s Andrea Sinclair is that rink’s lead.
The Rideau owns the provincial Tim Hortons masters. Layne Noble with Rick Bachand, Bob Hanna and Bob Boland finished the round robin at 7-0. Diana Favel with Janelle Sadler, Jennifer Langley and Judy Tulloch had to win two tiebreakers. Favel won the second game by scoring three in the last end then stole a point in the extra. The Travelers Tankard field is complete now. The Challenge Round saw Jake Higgs and John Epping joining the field. In Best Western Intermediates the men’s zone winners were: 1A – Willie Jeffries, B – Bill Adair; 2A – Ian Bridger, B – David Brown; 3A – Dwayne Lowe, B – Al Scott; 4A ,B – Kerry Powell. Bantam zone winners were: 1A – Cassie Allen and Kieran Bisson, B – Sydney Kennedy and Philippe Lalonde; 2A – Lindsay Bell and Hayden Richmond; B- Sierra Sutherland and Eric Shantz; 3A – Emma Wallingford and Jordie Lyon-Hatcher, B -and Kayla MacMillan and Mitchell Jeffs; 4A – Kate Davey and Joshua Henderson, B – Grace Wallingford and Ryan Hahn.
The third event in the OVCA Colts league (for novice curlers) was won by Phillip Viau, Luc Ouellete, Robert Pollender and Eric Labonte from Buckingham.
The entry forms for the Hogline Curlers Proshop Little Rocks Championship is now on the OVCA website”¦The Hunt Club’s Sweet Heart Bonspiel is accepting entries for the February 13 to 16 ‘spiel. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org…The WFG Continental Cup from Las Vegas begins Thursday morning. TSN carries all the action starting tomorrow morning at 11:30.
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BY JOE PAVIA
They are all very secretive.
So secretive, in fact, that the governing bodies didn’t even tell anyone the Canadian Curling Association passed a motion Nov. 14 declaring that the Ontario Curling Association is a member not in good standing with the national governing body.
Not only did we not know, but no one is saying why or how the provincial body can be re-instated. The CEO of the CCA, Greg Stremlaw, wrote to the Sun, “This comes as a result of ongoing investigation into recent conduct of the OCA, and is compliant with CCA bylaws that were approved by the member associations. The investigation continues and no further comment will be made until the completion of the investigation.”
OCA president Ian McGillis and other member associations would not comment on the situation.
The CCA has the Curling Club Development program where financial donations given to the CCA by club members will be given back to clubs, with the donor eligible for a CCA generated tax receipt. A Manotick member did this but found out from a CCA letter that OCA member clubs are no longer eligible for this program.
The situation could also make OCA curlers ineligible for national championships. The Sun asked Stremlaw about that. His reply “No, it will not. That is a privilege that was not currently removed by the national governing body.”
Are you scared by the word “currently”?
Just what did the OCA do? No one will say. One anonymous source postulates “I think this was set up, or someone was out to get someone else. The OCA president was interviewed by the CCA.”
Anyone who attends zone meetings knows the OCA openly criticizes the CCA. On Dec. 3, OCA executive director Doug Bakes announced his retirement effective this June.
Is this is a coincidence? Bakes and McGillis wouldn’t say.
OTTAWA RINK CHAMPIONS
The Ryan McCrady skipped rink from the Rideau won Ontario’s Pepsi Junior men’s title on Monday. Doug Kee, Matt Haughn and Cole Lyon-Hatcher played with Ryan. They head to Nova Scotia Jan. 18-26 for the M&M Meat Shops Canadian Juniors.
After the Travelers Tankard regions, men’s rinks advancing to the provincials are: 1A Mark Homan and B – Bryan Cochrane; 2A – Ron Lobel, B – Shannon Beddows; 3A – Jake Walker, B- Rob Rumfeldt; 4A -Mark Bice, B- Craig Van Ymeren. The last two squads will be determined at the Brampton Challenge Round Jan 10 to 13. The Tim Hortons Masters provincials began in Gravenhurst yesterday. Representing this area are Betty Bush, Lynn Macdonell, Layne Noble and Dwayne Lowe. Zone 3 and 4 Travelers Seniors winners were 3A – Dwayne Lowe, B- Leo Buckley; 4A – Randy Hutchinson, B – Rick Barnard. The Best Western Women’s Challenge zone winners were: 1A – Lynsey Longfield, B – Ruth Buckland; 2A – Karen Mahon, B – Sandy Mazzota; 3A – Yvonne Sklepowicz, B- Barb Westgarth; 4A – Laura Reavie, B – Katherine Nicholas. At the Fairfield Marriott Challenge the winners were: 1A – Al Solari, B – Marc Bourguignon, 2A – Ron Edgeley, B – Scott Moore; 3A – Doug Cochrane, B- Dennis Elgie; 4A – Brian Lewis, B – Jeremy Gale.
The Travelers All-Star Curling Skins Draft show is on TSN2 this Friday at 8 p.m. live from Banff. The four skips will choose their teams for the weekend’s skins games.
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BY JOE PAVIA
It isn’t a long way to go this year.
The men’s provincial championship is just down the road this season in Smiths Falls Jan. 27 to Feb. 7. But psychologically, it may be too far for Glenn Howard. After his huge, dispiriting disappointment at the Tim Hortons Roar of the Rings, can his heart be in yet another trip to the Tim Hortons Brier? He has been the Ontario Brier rep for the last eight tournaments.
The regional playdown weekend of Jan. 4 and the challenge round weekend starting Jan. 10 will determine the 10 teams hoping to dethrone Howard. And this may be the year to do it.
Smiths Falls new Memorial Community Centre will be hosting the Travelers Tankard Jan. 27 to Feb. 2. The 1,500-seat arena will offer both general admission and premier seating passdes at $226 to $282 respectively for the entire event. General admission draw tickets are $15 while premium are $20 per draw. Visit http://smithsfalls.ca/tickets.cfm for ticket information. You can also call 613 812-3372.
During the event, the upper hall will be transformed into the “Lockmaster’s House” which will be the pub hub for entertainment 8 p.m. to midnight. There has been some concern about accommodations in Smiths Falls. However, there are now three chain hotels in the municipality as well as three other bed and breakfasts and motels.
If you want to experience a large curling event with the country’s top talent, put Smiths Falls on your new year’s resolution schedule. You just may witness a changing of the guard.
In Scotties regional play, those moving onto provincials are Hollie Nicol and Cathy Auld. No local teams made the provincials. However, local curlers Lee Merklinger and Lynn Kreviazuk, playing for Sherry Middaugh and Allison Flaxey, respectively, in southern Ontario, made the provincials. Two more teams will be determined in the last chance challenge round taking place this weekend in Bradford. The provincials are in Sault Ste. Marie Jan. 5-12.
The votes are in and Glenn Howard is out. The fans voted for their top 16 players for the Travelers All-Star Curling Skins Game presented by Pinty’s. The skips who made the cut were Brad Jacobs, Brad Gushue, Jeff Stoughton and Kevin Martin. The voting deadline was during the trials. Even while rinks fought for their lives at the trials most teams used social media to remind people to vote for them. It turns out that five of the 16 voted in were not Olympians.
Team Homan second Alison Kreviazuk will be well travelled. She flew to Sweden to be with boyfriend Fredrik Lindberg for Christmas. She leaves there for home then to a Bern, Switzerland, women’s event followed by the Continental Cup in Las Vegas … The U.S. has been kicked out of future WFG Continental Cups as part of Team North America. Beginning in 2015, Team Canada only will play either Team World or Team Europe in alternating years. It’s about time! … The Cumberland Curling Club is another club that sees the advantage of offering a learn to curl program. This new program begins Jan. 6 for eight weeks for $125 with all equipment supplied. The important point is that the program is a structured program aimed at teaching proper delivery and curling techniques. For more information, call 613 833-2774 or email@example.com.
My curling column returns on Jan. 8. Be safe and enjoy the company of others for the season!
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BY JOE PAVIA
The devastation showed on her face.
Ottawa’s Lee Merklinger, the second for Sherry Middaugh at the Tim Hortons Roar of the Rings, was visibly disappointed after their loss in the finals to Jennifer Jones. But she wants to keep going. “Team Middaugh had an amazing time together. It was a great experience — one that I will never forget. Definitely I would go through all of this work again, that’s an easy decision. Once you get a sniff at the Olympics you want it more.”
Their preparation lasted four years. And maybe the most important preparation was mental. “Our team has been working with Kyle Paquette, a sports psych,” Merklinger said. “I credit him with our success. He prepared us mentally for any possibility, including what it would be like to lose the first three games and/or to win the first three games.”
Now, in most people’s thinking, Team Middaugh did not rank in the field’s upper crust. But the team ranked up there in the stats — Merklinger tied for first with Alison Kreviazuk at second.
“We were ready for any situation at the trials, that’s why when we went 1-3 there was no panic. We were never worried, as we knew that we had to just remain calm and trust in our process and preparation.”
If one judges by the rink’s social media feeds during the tournament they were indeed very relaxed. For instance Middaugh posted a funny tweet during their morning practice before the finals about ice makers.
“We are obviously extremely upset about losing, perhaps more upset that we came out flat against Jones because we knew we were capable of more, especially after playing her in the round robin. However, as upset as we are that we didn’t win, we’re pretty proud of ourselves for rallying back and winning the tiebreaker against Carey and the semi against Homan.”
Now they have a new goal: “Representing Ontario at the Scotties.”
In Scotties and Dominion Tankard zones the winners were: 1A – Katie Morrissey and Ian MacAulay, B – Laura Payne and Mark Homan; 2A – Rhonda Varnes and Howard Rajala, B – Samantha Peters and Greg Richardson; 3A – Lauren Mann and Stephen Watson, B – Brit O’Neill and Bryan Cochrane; 4A – Lindsay McKeown and Don Bowser, B – Lisa Farnell and Dave Collyer. In Tim Hortons Masters regional play the winners were 1A – Betty Bush and Layne Noble, B – Lynn Macdonell and Dwayne Lowe. The Gore Mutual School Boy and School Girl zone winners were 1A – Lindsay Bell and Peter Stranberg, B – Ali MacLeod and Trevor Ferrier.
The winner of the second event in the OVCA Colt series was the team skipped by Stephanie McClennan. Curling with her were Mary Chamberlain, Gayle Dillabaugh and Julie Boivin. They won at Carleton Place. The next event is at North Grenville Jan. 3.
Former world junior champion Brendan Bottcher will be carrying the Canuck flag at the opening of the 2013 Winter Universiade games in Trentino, Italy, Dec. 11 to 21. Ottawa’s Cheryl Kreviazuk is on the women’s squad, which is from Wilfrid Laurier University. Kreviazuk’s parents, Doug and Janice, who were in Winnipeg cheering on their daughter Alison, flew back to the capital for a day then grabbed a flight to Italy. Mr. Kreviazuk got involved in a bell clanging dispute at the Trials. Some Jones fans complained he was too loud so arena ushers made him pack his cow bell away. Karrick Martin is on the men’s team from the University of Alberta. Kevin is his father.
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The cream of curling showed up at the Patch. The place was packed.
Food would be good first before the party.
The Patch was ready.
Rachel Homan and her father Craig.
Allison’s father Doug.
Erin Flowers from Goldline.
Brent Laing’s father George.
BJ Neufeld from Team McEwen.
Curling sponsor John Shea and Team Stoughton vice, Jon Mead.
Keeping abreast of things in the Patch.
Dave Mathers (Team Epping), Breanne Meakin (Team Carey) Scott Howard (Team Howard)
The CCA’S director of high performance, Gerry Peckham.
CCA national coach Rick Laing.
Jan made friends with the Amurla lady who was dispensing free samples.
It was handy buying beer from the mobile carts!
Lawton third Sherry Anderson.
Stoughton lead Mark Nichols speaking to former teammate Russ Howard.
Stoughton second Reid Carruthers.
Curling Zone’s Gerry Geurts.
Robin on the right is an aid to the Minister of Sport.
Lisa Weagle and national coach Paul Webster.
Team Homan fifth Heather Smith.
Team Koe third Pat Simmons and Team Sonnenberg lead Rona Pasika.
From Team Sonnenberg, second Cary-Anne McTaggart and skip Renee Sonnenberg.
On the right, Cathy Overton-Clapham.
Randy Ferbey deciding what to do next season?
Team Sweeting second (who throws third) Joanne Courtney and lead Rachelle Pedherny.
TSN’s Bryan Mudryk.
Team Howard third Wayne Middaugh.
Team Homan coach Earle Morris.
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We visited the pop up Goldline store in our hotel to say hi to the Goldline folks and who should happen to be there, Team John Morris on an autograph session.
The smart thing Winnipeg does is connect downtown buildings with pedways so one doesn’t have to brave the cold weather. Halifax does this as well. Ottawa would never have the imagination to do this. That is the pedway in the distance with the photo being taken with myself standing in another pedway I had taken from the MTS Centre to the Delta.
The arena floor has changed now that there are only single games happening.
Now if you don’t have a job you can always do what this guy in the photos below does.
What is the going rate for cleaning a head light?
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Here are the areas the fans don’t see.
This is the media room. The photographers use this room a lot.
Of course every room has lots of Tim’s stuff.
This is the hallway that the players, officials and the media take to the arena.
After you clean your shoes, you walk on lots of sticky mats.
So when the game is over the skips have to come to the media scrum room. The media can also complete a media interview request form and the players is brought to you to interview.
This is the TSN editing room.
So when you see the players interviewed in pre-recorded segments during the game or when the skips introduce their teams, this is where that is done.
The dressing rooms are far from the ice. When the players have to go, they have to run a long way.
This is the main prep kitchen for the entire arena and the many concession stands.
They run out of this at their peril.
The smoking balcony of our room which I haven’t used….almost 11 weeks now.
Janet is great! She has the coffee prepped for the next morning.
Ice machine is directly across hallway from our door. DELTA RULES!
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The level 500 cat wal;k area has a number of offices and rooms related to game day. The 500 level is divided into 2 areas – the upper and lower gondola. The timers and some of the press are on the lower gondola.
There is also a school kids program that uses the seating opposite the press box.
Along the hallway are offices and rooms used by the hockey club. The number of offices indicate why pro hockey costs so much.
These are the signs still unchanged from the last hockey game in the MTS Centre on November 23.
The largest room is the game day production office. It holds seven staff for hockey. A director, 2 video technicians, a music guy, lighting, sound guys and an announcer. The entire game is scripted. It just takes one for curling.
Don’t go in this room or this one.
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You go to Boston Pizza with Janet Ellis and Ken Thompson from the Ontario Curling Report. The plan is to have a pleasant lunch then return to the MTS Centre for the afternoon draw.
Some red wine for Ken and I, some white for Janet.
Well then one bottle of the tasty New Zealand wine leads to another.
And fine friends such as CCA sponsor John Shea from JSI appear.
John says “I’ll buy the next bottle.” Our server delivers…our first of 2 servers.
Oh Dear…look at the TV.
It’s the afternoon draw…still working on the wine and more curling fans surround us.
My heavens… they have run out of the 4 bottles of the New Zealnd wine so we have to swtich to Italian. Jan doesn’t care because her white wine is the same.
More friends we don’t know and more wine as the afternoon draw carries on.
People are beginning to look strange.
Well afternoon draw is over. New server…time to examine supper menu.
Maybe do a little gambling in the mall while we wait for evening draw to begin.
Be careful when you go to lunch at the Trials.
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BY JOE PAVIA
Will Ferrell as Ron Burgundy jokes with skip Glenn Howard prior to the start of the Roar of the Rings Canadian Olympic Curling Trials in Winnipeg. WINNIPEG: The Canadian Curling Association wants an event in Ottawa. There hasn’t been a major CCA event in the capital since the 2001 Brier. Ottawa was awarded the Ford Men’s World Championships but the future of Lansdowne Park was up in the air at the time so Ottawa had to decline. “We want an event in Ottawa, whether it’s the Brier or whatever,” said Warren Hansen, CCA’s director of event operations. An Ottawa group, led by the Senators, bid for the current Roar of the Rings. It is taking place in Winnipeg because that city bid substantially more than the Ottawa group. Ottawa is well positioned to make a bid. 2017 is the 150th anniversary of Canada and will also be an Olympic Trials year for the 2018 Winter Games in Korea. “Personally,” said Hansen, “I like the Civic Centre for a major curling event. The other venue (Canadian Tire Centre) is too far away from things and too big.” Hansen does, however, feel that the CCA would work with the Senators to host an event at their venue. At this point, Hansen said, no fee to host the 2017 trials has been discussed or established by his association. In the last two cycles, the cities that won the bids (Edmonton and Winnipeg) both bid substantially more than what was asked. Hansen believes there is a problem with the economics of curling event hosting. “Any live entertainment business is having a difficult time selling tickets,” he said. “Unless there is a strong reason to commit people just aren’t doing that anymore.” He said it applies to all live event businesses, just not curling. He feels there are a number of reasons for this. People aren’t travelling to attend the entire Brier or Scotties anymore.” People have other things to do with their money”. Ticket sales now are focused on the closing or opening weekends, single draw tickets or importantly, if the “home” town teams make the championship round. Hansen has been running these events for close to 40 years, so he “may start the process of having an event in Ottawa,” but doubts he’ll be there unless as a spectator. No one in Ottawa has approached the CCA about staging an event here. The door is now open. OCA RESULTS In Pepsi junior regional play, those advancing to the provincials are: 1A – Pascal Michaud and Emma Wallingford; B – Ryan McCrady and Cassandra Lewin. Lewin suffered injuries in a car accident driving home alone from regions. She is recovering. In region 4 Ottawa’s Colton Daly and Geordin Raganold played together as skip and third respectively on a London based team. They captured the A-side of their region. They had to play out of zone 16 because that was the only place they could find a coach. The provincials begin January 2 in Gananoque. BURGUNDY WHINE The appearance of Ron Burgundy (actor Will Ferrell) split the curling crowd. Some viewers said his antics made the TSN broadcast unwatchable. Others felt it was great for the game. This was a contra deal with Paramount Pictures for his appearance in return for commercials. WINNER’S CIRCLE Team Canada took home the championship at the 9th annual Cathy Kerr International Wheelchair Curling Cashspiel by defeating Great Britain 5-3 in the final. Slovakia defeated Quebec for third place”¦ Keil Gallinger from Kemptville defeated Ottawa’s Spencer Cooper to win the Labatt Men’s Invitational Bonspiel in Cornwall on Sunday. END NOTES Doug Bakes, the executive director of the Ontario Curling Association, announced his retirement yesterday. He leaves the post in June 2014.
Will Ferrell as Ron Burgundy jokes with skip Glenn Howard prior to the start of the Roar of the Rings Canadian Olympic Curling Trials in Winnipeg.
WINNIPEG: The Canadian Curling Association wants an event in Ottawa.
There hasn’t been a major CCA event in the capital since the 2001 Brier. Ottawa was awarded the Ford Men’s World Championships but the future of Lansdowne Park was up in the air at the time so Ottawa had to decline.
“We want an event in Ottawa, whether it’s the Brier or whatever,” said Warren Hansen, CCA’s director of event operations.
An Ottawa group, led by the Senators, bid for the current Roar of the Rings. It is taking place in Winnipeg because that city bid substantially more than the Ottawa group. Ottawa is well positioned to make a bid. 2017 is the 150th anniversary of Canada and will also be an Olympic Trials year for the 2018 Winter Games in Korea.
“Personally,” said Hansen, “I like the Civic Centre for a major curling event. The other venue (Canadian Tire Centre) is too far away from things and too big.”
Hansen does, however, feel that the CCA would work with the Senators to host an event at their venue. At this point, Hansen said, no fee to host the 2017 trials has been discussed or established by his association. In the last two cycles, the cities that won the bids (Edmonton and Winnipeg) both bid substantially more than what was asked.
Hansen believes there is a problem with the economics of curling event hosting.
“Any live entertainment business is having a difficult time selling tickets,” he said. “Unless there is a strong reason to commit people just aren’t doing that anymore.”
He said it applies to all live event businesses, just not curling.
He feels there are a number of reasons for this. People aren’t travelling to attend the entire Brier or Scotties anymore.” People have other things to do with their money”. Ticket sales now are focused on the closing or opening weekends, single draw tickets or importantly, if the “home” town teams make the championship round.
Hansen has been running these events for close to 40 years, so he “may start the process of having an event in Ottawa,” but doubts he’ll be there unless as a spectator.
No one in Ottawa has approached the CCA about staging an event here. The door is now open.
In Pepsi junior regional play, those advancing to the provincials are: 1A – Pascal Michaud and Emma Wallingford; B – Ryan McCrady and Cassandra Lewin. Lewin suffered injuries in a car accident driving home alone from regions. She is recovering. In region 4 Ottawa’s Colton Daly and Geordin Raganold played together as skip and third respectively on a London based team. They captured the A-side of their region. They had to play out of zone 16 because that was the only place they could find a coach. The provincials begin January 2 in Gananoque.
The appearance of Ron Burgundy (actor Will Ferrell) split the curling crowd. Some viewers said his antics made the TSN broadcast unwatchable. Others felt it was great for the game. This was a contra deal with Paramount Pictures for his appearance in return for commercials.
Team Canada took home the championship at the 9th annual Cathy Kerr International Wheelchair Curling Cashspiel by defeating Great Britain 5-3 in the final. Slovakia defeated Quebec for third place”¦ Keil Gallinger from Kemptville defeated Ottawa’s Spencer Cooper to win the Labatt Men’s Invitational Bonspiel in Cornwall on Sunday.
Doug Bakes, the executive director of the Ontario Curling Association, announced his retirement yesterday. He leaves the post in June 2014.
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The interseting thing about the Trials is the banquet is before the event begins.
Other CCA events the dinner is after the event ends -even the Brier and the Scotties. But with the Trials its before. If it is at any other time no teams would care….or even show up!
Ok …at the Trials we should all wear slippers.
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The weather in Winnipeg is warm if over cast.
The seeming lack of ticket sales may be a matter for concern for some but not to Greg Stremlaw who I met at the Winnipeg airport. We were on the same flight. Stremlaw is the CEO of the Canadian Curling Association.
He feels that having sold 140,000 tickets is something to which most sports would be envious.
On the Ron Burgundy appearance, this was a CCA initiative. It was something the CCA thought of, contacted Paramount studios then got TSN behind it. There was no fee involved but a contra deal with Paramount so look for a lot of commercials for Anchorman 2 The Legend Continues.
Like Halifax, Winnipeg has these elevated pedestrian ways that link all important buildings downtown. The MTS Center, the Winnipeg Convention Center (where the Patch is) and the Delta where we are staying are all linked.
The bad thing is our hotel is right next door to the Patch.
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by Joe Pavia
MTS may stand for Much Too Stressful.
The Ottawa area athletes competing in Winnipeg at the MTS Center in the Tim Hortons Roar of the Rings Olympic trials next week believe that how teams handle pressure will go a long way in determining the winners.
“I firmly believe that the team that wins will be the one who embraces the pressure of the trials and uses it to fuel their performance,” said Lee Merklinger, Sherry Middaugh’s second,
Team Middaugh is eliminating as many outside distractions as possible. “It’s important that we control what texts/messages/emails we receive. Husbands and boyfriends are great but they can sometimes be critical too,” said the Merlinger. As of Sunday, the phones get shut off.
Craig Savill of Glenn Howard’s rink said, “I think the team that stays the most level headed is going to come out on top. If we do that we have a great chance.”
Rachel Homan, however, feels “It‘s just like any other tournament we prepare for.”
The Scotties champ is taking the trials in stride. Her coach, Earle Morris, feels they have to embrace the pressure and make it work for them.
All the Ottawa players have been practising daily, if not twice a day. Team Homan even brought in rocks that are heavier than the rocks they usually practise with and curl like arena rocks.
The last word belongs to Savill, who with tongue in cheek pin pointed why his team will win. “I was hoping that we would win this thing at lead but I don’t think that’s going to happen. I think we need our back end. I am going to be the best cheerleader I can be and I’m going to sweep my ass off too.”
These Ottawa athletes will be toasted at the Ottawa Curling Club Wednesday beginning at 7. All are invited.
TSN is broadcasting all the games either on their main network or TSN 2. The first televised game is this Sunday afternoon at 2. It will most likely be Homan against Edmonton’s Val Sweeting.
The prediction: Men – Glenn Howard, dark horse – John Morris; Women – Rachel Homan, dark horse – Val Sweeting.
In Tim Hortons Masters the men’s winners were: Zone 1A – George Ferrall, B – Wally Morris; 2A – Layne Noble, B – John Wellington; 3A – Dwayne Lowe, B – Emile Robert; 4A – Mike Schneider, B – John Smith. Pepsi Junior zone results: 1A –Cassandra Lewin and Jason Camm ,B – Camille Daly and Brandon McPhee, 2A –Kim Gannon and Ryan McCrady, B – Abby Bolton and Greg Bridges ,3A – Lauren Horton and Pascal Michaud, B – Emma Wallingford and Jordie Lyon-Hatcher, 4A –Katherine Nichols and David Brown, B –Kate Davey and Joshua Henderson.
Wheelchair curlers from five nations plus wheelchair athletes from 11 Canadian locations will be competing at the RA Center beginning Thursday. The 9th annual Cathy Kerr International Bonspiel boasts over 100 athletes, including Canada’s national team skip Jim Armstrong. The finals are Dec. 1 at 1 p.m.
The Ottawa area deaf curling team who won gold at the 2013 Deaf Curling Champions was named Canadian Team of the Year by the Canadian Deaf Sports Association. The team consists of Michael Raby, David Joseph, Andre Guillmette, Michel Cyr and Guy Morin while Denise Hoekstra was named Coach of the Year for any sport…Team Allison Ross defeated Matt Paul to win the Tankard Tune-up cash spiel…Hats off to the Rideau Curling Club for their stellar execution of the Canadian Mixed.
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He’s seen a lot of rinks this season.
Ontario’s Greg Balsdon is the second on the defending champion mixed team but playing hurt. The injury hasn’t stopped his enthusiasm for the sport, however.
This spring the associate pro and curling manager at the Glenview club in Hamilton goes under the knife for a torn labrum. Being a curling professional as well as a golf professional leaves him with not much out-of-season down time. He is forsaking the golf however. “I’m not really playing for much in golf and playing for lots in curling,” he said. “That’s the decision because in curling I am actually playing for something.”
He is up for the Canadian Mixed and wants to defend badly. Although his injury sidelined himself from a couple of games he took part in every shot behind the glass. His wealth of experience has taken him to lots of curling events. He skipped one of seven Ontario teams at the recent Capital One Road to the Roar in Kitchener. “Every game you could just feel the atmosphere,” he said. “Every game across every sheet you could feel it. You were playing for an Olympic spot essentially.”
Ontario plays the Territories in Friday’s last draw. Ontario still has a chance to make the playoffs, which is something he relishes above all else.
Injury or not, Balsdon wants to retain the title.
AROUND THE MIXED: The volunteer tweeting was having a hay day with the Ontario-P.E.I. extra end game yesterday afternoon. He was on the edge of his tweet.
PUT ME IN COACH: The stretch run is taking its course. Ottawa curler Don Bowser has subbed for the ailing Ontario second Greg Balsdon and skipped the Newfoundland team last evening against Alberta. Diana Favel played two games for team PEI while Kim Brown played for Quebec.
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by Joe Pavia
Newfoundland/Labrador and the Northwest Territories emerged from the nail-biting, four team, relegation round yesterday. They now advance to join the remaining 10 provincial champions in the round robin.
Newfie skip Gary Oke is no stranger to national competitions in Ottawa. He guided his team in the 1993 Labatt Brier played at Ottawa’s Civic Center, the last Brier where the free guard zone didn’t exist. His 1993 alternate was his brother Terry Oke who is his second here at Mixed. Current Ottawa curler Gary Rowe played lead. Their Brier Third, Don Ryan, now lives in Cornwall. The only player missing is their second Rob Thomas. The Oke boys will have a great local cheering section.
More pants: Terry Oke had to purchase curling pants when he arrived in Ottawa. A couple of weeks ago his wife was in Ottawa and bought him two pairs of pants which he promptly forgot on the island.
Pregnant pause: Katarina Hakansson, the lead for Nova Scotia, claims this is her second Mixed — sort of. Her mom, Mary Sue Radford, was pregnant with her when mom competed in the 1991 Mixed. Mom won a Scotties and a Worlds with Colleen Jones. Mom who is now 51 years of age and daughter who is 22 currently compete in women’s together. “We love it!” says Katrina enthusiastically.
TV: Rogers 22 will air the opening draw tonight at 7:30.
Sociable: Besides curling the Mixed is a party to which everyone is invited. Saturday night’s music is provided by “Three Times Lucky”.
The spiel opens tonight at 7:30 when defending champions Ontario take on New Brunswick.
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It should all be about club curlers.
In the summer months when new curlers’ thoughts turn to the roaring game, RCMP curler Marc Dufresne, a new skip, was watching the movie “Dodgeball” when it hit him that his team name should be Team Cobra. When the season began, another rink in their men’s Monday league decided to go by the name of Team Mongoose. Their impending, regular scheduled 9 p.m. game Nov. 11 began to take on a life of its own.
Posters promoted the sport; the club’s advertising screen carried a Cobra/Mongoose fight video, other players decided to watch, even families were going to attend a match that was going to decide nothing and lead nowhere. Why?
“It’s a celebration of club play.” said Dufresne. “All-star players all started to play in a club. This game means very little. These two teams managed to celebrate club play, they brought club curlers together to have fun and enjoy the ordinary game. And I think this is worth mentioning! The sport of curling benefits from small enjoyable moments like this, too often unnoticed.”
Team Mongoose prevailed for the 5-3 win. The Mongoose consisted of Paul Adams, Pat Charbonneau, Steve Larocque and Terry Labelle. Curling with Dufresne were John Hammond, Mike Stagg and David Frost.
“Every club needs a guy like Marc,” RCMP manager Paul Adams said. “He walks into a room and gets things going.”
Club curlers continue to be the backbone of curling.
The national mixed begins tomorrow at the Rideau Curling Club. The tensest play will begin Thursday afternoon when 4 teams — Newfoundland/Labrador, Nunavut, Northwest Territories and the Yukon — play off to determine which two rinks advance to the round robin. These draws are Thursday at 2 and 7 then Friday afternoon at 2.
Round robin play begins Saturday at 7:30 then daily draws at 10 a.m., 2:30 p.m. and 7 p.m. The first-place team advances directly to the final on Saturday, Nov. 23, at 2 p.m. while the second- and third-place teams meet in a semifinal Friday evening to determine the other finalist. The winning team will earn two berths (two two-person teams) into the Canadian Mixed Doubles Trials, slated for March 19-23 at the Ottawa Hunt & Golf Club. The winner of this 32-team competition will then represent Canada at the World Mixed Doubles, April 22-29 in Dumfries, Scotland.
Tickets are available at the door. The draw is available at www.curling.ca
The Buckingham foursome of Roger Bertrand, Gaetan Chauret, Martin Patry and Dennis Dumoulin are the Quebec reps at the upcoming Dominion National Curling Club championship in Thunder Bay beginning Nov. 18. Two Ottawa junior rinks captured the championships at the Huntley Junior bonspiel. Kimberly Gannon, Marie-Elaine Little, Sarah Throop and Hailey Armstrong earned the women’s crown while Colton Daly, Geordin Raganold, Scotty Valair and Matt Clahane got the men’s side.
The Grand Slam’s second stop, the Canadian Open, begins tomorrow in Medicine Hat, Alta. Sportsnet carries some round-robin action and shares the weekend championship round with CBC. The Sunday afternoon final is at 1 “¦ You can now vote for the 16 players who will be drafted onto four teams for this season’s Traveler’s All Star Curling Skins Game. Vote at www.tsn.ca/CurlingSkins. Players include local curlers Craig Savill and Jean- Michel Menard “¦ The Manotick Curling Center has been urging curlers to vote online in the Aviva Community Fund initiative that awards a deserving community project a lot of cash. The Manotick folks are still in the running to get into the semi-finals. The voting link is www.avivacommunityfund.org/ideas/acf17472.
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By Joe Pavia
Sunday, Nov. 10, marks 125 years.
In 1888 Sir Sandford Fleming (the Scottish father of time zones) founded the Rideau Curling Club. The institution’s colourful history will be celebrated throughout the year but with a kickoff this Sunday evening starting at 6. The Rideau is also hosting the Canadian mixed championships beginning Nov. 14 to 23.
Legend has it that the Scottish engineer was denied a drink at his original curling club so he left and founded the Rideau. He had good company. The then Governor General, Lord Stanley, became the curling club’s patron. Initially they rented a facility called the Rideau Skating and Curling Company on Waller Street that had three curling sheets of natural ice. Annual dues were $10 but the weather was a constant worry because of no refrigeration capacity. They moved the club to two other locations over the years until 1949 when they bought land that housed a coal yard and blacksmith shop. They built a one story facility in 1950 then added a second story in 1965. A permanent, unique display of over 100 tartans graces the lobby. The Rideau is one of Canada’s premier and most renowned curling clubs.
This Sunday’s ceremonies include Stephen Wallace, the secretary to the Governor General, Mayor Jim Watson, Paul Dewar, MP, Minister of Labour, Yasir Naqvi, MPP and Councillor Diane Holmes. Sir Sandford Fleming is expected to make an appearance as well. He may unveil a new Balmoral tartan recently approved by the Queen.
She was the last team to enter and the last to leave.
P.E.I.’s Suzanne Birt stole a seventh end triple to defeat Darcy Robertson from Winnipeg 8-3 at the Royal LePage OVCA Women’s Fall Classic World Tour Event held at the North Grenville Curling Club in Kemptville over the weekend. The Islanders left with $5,200 while Robertson settled for $2,800.
The semi-finalists, who took home $1,800, were Montreal`s Eve Belisle and Nina Spatola from Wisconsin.
Qualifiers were Toronto’s Julie Hastings, Britt O’Neill from Ottawa, Halifax’s Heather Smith-Dacey (who as fifth for Team Homan at the Trials practiced and played with the rink the week before), and Sweden`s Anna Hasselborg. They all won $1,100.
Ottawa rinks were absent from the finals of the JSI OVCA Junior SuperSpiel on the weekend. Collingwood’s Kendall Haymes took the women’s championship by defeating Manitoba’s Shannon Birchard 8-2 while New Brunswick’s Rene Comeau bested the current Canadian Junior champ Matt Dunstone from Manitoba 6-4.
GRAND SLAM TITLES: Ottawa’s Team Homan battled back from a poor round robin record, to a tie breaker win then to the championship final where they defended their Master’s title with a 7-5 over Scotland’s Eve Muirhead. “We just kept building, got a couple of breaks and took it one game at a time.” said Homan. They earned $23,000. “We didn’t play all that well.” observed Craig Savill as he talked about his team’s play at the Masters. Their “poor” performance got Team Howard $26,000 in their championship 7-5 victory over Team Kevin Martin.
THE CAPITAL ONE ROAD TO THE ROAR: Gatineau’s Jean-Michel Menard made short work of Ottawa’s Bryan Cochrane in their first game in Kitchener. This is a triple-knockout format with four rinks from each gender drop into the championship round where two rinks of each gender advance to the Trials. TSN televises the championship rounds this Saturday and Sunday at 9 am, 2 pm and 7 pm.
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By Joe Pavia
Lisa Farnell (from left) and her rink of Erin Morrissey, Karen Sagle, Ainsley Galbraith and Victoria Kyle took home $5,000 at the Challenge Chateau Cartier in Gatineau on the weekend. PHOTO BY STAN FONG
Curling team sisterhood trumps sisterhood by blood.
That’s what Ottawa’s Katie Morrissey might have discovered when big sister Erin’s rink beat her 7-4 in the final of the Challenge Chateau Cartier in Gatineau on Sunday. Big sis plays vice for Elgin, Ont.’s Lisa Farnell, whose team scored a seventh end five-ender, for their come from behind victory in the final.
Of that seventh end, Farnell said “Katie had been playing a very aggressive, strategic game throughout and playing really well. So she decided to stick with it and ultimately she just wasn’t able to execute her shots quite perfectly in the 7th, and we were able to capitalize and take a big 5 points.”
The skip (27 years old) and vice (28) along with lead Ainsley Galbraith (29) have been a team for six seasons. Karen Sagle (26) joined the squad last year as second. Alternate Victoria Kyle (20) took Sagle’s place for many of the games because the second had work commitments.
The team’s goals are to win a World Curling Tour event — now accomplished — and “All of us are itching to win the Ontario Scotties and play at the national level in women’s play… but one thing at a time … we’re really staying focused on qualifying for the Ontario Scotties first and foremost. Then we’ll take things from there.”
They competed in the 2010 and 2011 provincials but missed the last two years. All are former Ontario junior provincial champions.
The sisters share an Ottawa apartment together and are close. Erin skipped her junior team to provincial victory in 2005 with Katie throwing lead. “Everyone on our team knows Katie well.” said Farnell. “But both girls seemed to be able to put all of that stuff aside for the final, and were able to just focus on the game and playing well. Both of them played great.”
Their best game of the weekend came in the semi-finals against Team Homan. “My team played really well the whole game, one of our strongest games all weekend, and I was able to make a tough shot with my last rock in the 8th for the win,” said Farnell.
Team Farnell edged the Canadian champs 5-4 by scoring three in the fourth end.
“The win this weekend was huge for us.” said Farnell. “It’s nice to see our work pay off, and for us to finally have a great weekend where we kept things strong right through to the end.”
Their strength earned them $5,000 while little sister left with $3,000.
Homan and the other semi-finalist, Sweden’s Cissi Ostlund, won $2,000 each and quarter-finalists Kimberly Mastine from Montreal and Toronto’s Cathy Auld left with $1,500. Many from this field are competing in the Royal Lepage OVCA Women’s Fall Classic beginning tomorrow in Kemptville.
Brad Gushue won the men’s side and $11,000 by defeating Guelph’s Rob Rumfeldt 6-3. The runner-up took home $7,000. Semi-finalists Jean-Michel Menard and Ottawa’s Howard Rajala garnered $5,000 each while the $3,500 each qualifiers were Brian Lewis, Team JT Bradley’s (both Ottawa), Brad Jacobs and Mark Kean (Toronto).
WINNER CIRCLE: Team Lauren Horton of Almonte won the London Junior Cashspiel on Sunday. Her team was Carly Howard, Kerilynn Mathers and Jessica Armstrong.
END NOTES: The Russell Curling Club is hosting a send off for Team Cochrane this Friday evening. The rink is competing in the Capital One Road to the War beginning November 5 Kitchener . The Grand Slam of Curling’s the Masters, from Abbotsford, B.C., is the first televised curling this season. Watch Thursday and Friday games at various times on Sportsnet with the Saturday championship matches on CBC.
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by Joe Pavia
There’s plenty of good curling coming up to experience in person.
The Challenge Château Cartier de Gatineau begins tomorrow at the Robert Rochon arena in the Masson-Angers sector of Gatineau. Fans can view all the action by visiting Curling Zone or www.challengechateaucartier.com . The current Brier champion Brad Jacobs makes his debut tomorrow morning at 8:30 while that other Brad (Gushue) begins Thursday afternoon at 1:30. Jean-Michel Menard is also competing as are a number of teams slated to appear in the Road to the Roar. The women’s side is headlined by Rachel Homan, who begins Thursday night at 9. The defending women’s champ from Toronto, Julie Reddick, begins Friday night at 9. The finals are Sunday afternoon at 3:30 with the winner earning $11,000 from a total purse of $42,000. The women’s victor takes home $5,000 from total purse of $15,000. There is a $5 admission fee.
The curling could be scary good beginning on Halloween at the North Grenville Curling Club. The Royal Lepage OVCA Women’s Fall Classic. Twenty-four teams will be battling for $15,600 with the winner making off with $5,100.
The field is headed by five-time Canadian Champion and two-time world champion Mary- Anne Arsenault from Halifax. Her club mate Heather Smith-Dacey is also competing along with two other maritime squads headed by perennial Scotties competitors Suzanne Birt and Kathy O’Rourke, both from P.E.I. One of the four USA women’s squads vying to be TEAM USA in the Olympics will he here – the Courtney George from Minnesota. Two other American rinks are coming as is the young Swedish team of Anna Hasselborg. There are plenty of local teams as well as Quebec rinks and a squad from Manitoba.
The first draw is the morning of October 31 at 9:15. Sunday’s November 3 final is at 3:30. There is a small admission charge of $5.
Not enough curling that weekend? Catch the action at the JSI OVCA Junior SuperSpiel November 1-3. Besides Canadian teams from Manitoba east there are Scottish and USA rinks. U.S. junior men’s champion, Korey Dropkin, from Massachusetts, as well as the current Canadian title holder Winnipeg’s Matt Dunstone, head the men’s field. The Canadian junior silver medalist, Shannon Birchard, from Manitoba leads the women’s section.
The Yukon squad that made it to fourth place at last year’s junior nationals skipped by Sarah Koltun will feature Ottawa’s Andrea Sinclair as vice.
Sixteen rinks of each gender are playing with the action staged at six area clubs. The finals are at the Granite Sunday afternoon November 3 at 4. Admission is free. The draw can be found at www.superspiel.ca.
OCA RESULTS: The first play downs of the season have begun and they were for the Dominion Club championships. Those moving onto the provincial championships next week in Hamilton are Dave Stanley, Dennis Murray, Jennifer Harvey and Caroline Deans. Murray was the runner-up in his region losing to Chris Gardner. Gardiner was already committed to competing in the Challenge Chateau Cartier which is the same weekend as the Dominion provincials. “I played in it (the Dominion) for a chance to play with my father.” said Gardiner. Murray will now play in Hamilton.
The Dominion is still the only and the best vehicle for club curlers to feel the excitement of a national championship with all the thrills and perks experienced by more accomplished players.
WINNERS CIRCLE: The Junior Super Spiel qualifier was held in Almonte on the weekend. Those teams who have made the November 1- 3 cashspiel are Lauren Horton, Cassandra Lewin, Abby Bolton, Ryan McCrady, Pascal Michaud and Colton Daly.
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by Joe Pavia
Ottawa players keep curling toward Olympic destiny.
Craig Savill with his Glenn Howard team won his first event as a full team at the Stu Sells Toronto Tankard.
“What we do in October and November is geared around peaking in December for the Olympic trials,” Savill said. “Grinding out a win through the C-side on tricky ice is just the start we were hoping for.”
They defeated Winnipeg’s Mike McEwen, another team Howard will face in the Tim Hortons Roar of the Rings.
In the same event, Bryan Cochrane’s tream battled hard against Howard in the semifinals, even taking three in the fifth end. Howard eventually ran them out of rocks to win 7-5.
Cochrane third, Chris Gardner, thinks, “We simply need to play these top teams more than we have been. We need to figure out how to win at the top level.”
Cochrane eliminated Gatineau’s Jean-Michel Menard, another Road to the Roar skip, in a C-side game.
At the Curlers Corners Autumn Gold Classic, team Rachel Homan took a leaf from Howard’s playbook by qualifying through the C side. The Ottawa squad fell short by losing a semifinal 4-3 to eventual ’spiel winner Eve Muirhead of Scotland. The Muirhead team is also Britain’s Olympic squad.
Ian MacAulay ran Don Bowser out of rocks for a 6-3 win at the Capital Curling Classic on Monday. MacAulay,with Steve and Rick Allen, and Barry Conrad, had defeated Bowser earlier in the A-side final. The winner took home $5,000 while the runner-up left with $3,000. By defending his title, this marks MacAulay’s second win of the season.
On the women’s side, Montreal’s Allison Ross defeated Ottawa’s Jenn Hanna 6-4 with a last-end steal. Both rinks were the A-side winners. Ottawa’s Melissa Gannon throws third for Ross. Also on the team are Brittany O’Rourke and Pamela Nugent. Ross left with $2,400, while Hanna won $1,300.
Qualifiers (winning $1,500 each) were Howard Rajala, Francois Gagne, Steve Gagnon and Mark Homan. The semifinalists, at $2,000 each, were Matt Paul and Simon Dupuis.
On the women’s side, the qualifier was Rhonda Varnes ($800). The $1,000 each semifinalists were Brit O’Neill and Lauren Mann. Edgar Simpson took the open section and $800.
The fifth Challenge Chateau Cartier de Gatineau begins Oct. 24 at the Robert Rochon sports centre, as well as at the Buckingham and Thurso curling clubs. Thirty-two elite men’s teams and 16 elite women’s squads will be competing as will 20 open squads at the two curling clubs.
Heading the elite sections will be two Canadian champions, Rachel Homan and Brad Jacobs. The men’s elite section is a preview of the Capital One Road to the Roar — the November event that determines the last two rinks for the trials. Besides Jacobs, the other rinks competing in Gatineau and at the Road are Brad Gushue, Bryan Cochrane, Wayne Tuck, Mark Kean and Jean-Michel Menard.
Ottawa’s Lynn Kreviazuk’s southern Ontario-based team defeated Halifax’s Mary-Anne Arsenault to capture the women’s side of the Stu Sells Toronto Tankard on Monday. This is the same team the Ottawa second played for last season, but with a skip name change (nee Nimik) because of marriage … The team of Mike Robb, Jeff Tindall, Blake Sinclair and Mark St-John won the initial OVCA Colts League circuit bonspiel two weekends ago.
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Jason Camm (QMI Agency file)
by Joe Pavia
Are there no hometown curling teams anymore?
Orléans junior skip Colton Daly won the Rideau Ice Breaker junior bonspiel on Sunday with Ottawa’s Geordin Raganold and Matt Clahane. Their second is Russell Cuddie from London, Ont. Cuddie joined the team to replace a season-long sidelined player from Belleville.
The inclusion of out-of-area players is more and more common on junior teams. Yes, John Morris won junior fame fifteen years ago with out-of-town competitors.
“We were the first to do that,” observed Craig Savill, then the third. “It was very rare then.”
Daly thinks the more competitive teams will do this.
“I think it’s because there are so few high-end competitive players that many people have to travel to make teams work and find better competition,” he said.
It took awhile to find the London second so late into the junior short season. In their first game of the ‘spiel, a throw to the button had to decide a game and Daly let Cuddie deliver the rock because “our goal this weekend was just to get comfortable with each other throwing.”
Tom Sinclair, a busy junior coach and the Ottawa Valley Curling Association youth Director, thinks there are many reasons for the importation of talent.
“In simple terms,” he explains, “there has been a wider exposure of curlers.”
Sinclair believes that the top curlers are meeting up at camps on the junior tour. More and more junior curlers are making the financial commitment (or their parents are) to attend costly camps both in Canada and even in Europe.
The coach also believes this area’s young curlers really started thinking about bringing in players from other areas when Navan’s Jason Camm skipped a Toronto-based team to the bantam provincial championship in 2011.
Dreams of Olympic gold also contribute to this junior quest for quality players. In the past, there were few events that allowed this age group to face the world. Now there are U18 tournaments, the JSI OVCA Junior Super Spiel and an expanded university program. The latter extends youth involvement to mid-20s.
Social media has also facilitated recruitment, retention and even allowed out-of-town players to follow their teammates’ training routines. It has allowed what Sinclair calls remote training.
This trend will be the new normal.
The man who set the standard for leads is not doing well. Neil (Harry) Harrison, one of the sport’s good guys, is undergoing treatment in a Newmarket hospital for brain cancer. According to his wife Jane, the sixty-four years young, two-time world champ was recovering from a January 2012 stroke. Then on Sept. 5, doctors found a tumour, “a really nasty one, “Jane said. Harry’s friends, fans and curlers are urged to send their best wishes to firstname.lastname@example.org or to his home at 352 Terry Carter Cres., Newmarket, Ont., L3Y-9G1. Jane Harrison hopes to compile a scrapbook to show Neil when he is feeling stronger.
Winchester’s Jordan Mark is this year’s winner of the OCA’s John McCrae scholarship. Jordan is attending Loyalist College.
CURLING THIS WEEK
The Capital Curling Classic (formerly the Mac Ice) begins Wednesday at 6:30 at the RCMP. The finals are Monday at 1:30.
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