The Canadian Curling Association today announced that the 2009 Canada Cup of Curling will be held in Yorkton, Saskatchewan.
As one of the premier events in the 2008-09 Season of Champions, the Canada Cup will be staged March 18-22, 2009 at the Farrell Agencies Arena in the Gallagher Centre.
“It gives me great pleasure, on behalf of the Canadian Curling Association (CCA), to announce Yorkton as the site for the 2009 Canada Cup,” said Greg Stremlaw, Chief Executive Officer of the CCA. “We could not be happier with the way the Host Committee has pursued this opportunity and have high hopes that the great Saskatchewan curling fans in Yorkton and surrounding areas will welcome the elite curling teams who annually participate in this event.”
“The Yorkton Curling Club is very enthusiastic about hosting the Canada Cup,” added Brian Kruger, Host Committee chairman. “Our club has a great history of support from curling fans in Yorkton and nearby areas. We have held high calibre events previously and see this opportunity to be a culmination of all the work done by volunteers in the past. It is very exciting to know that Yorkton will be one of the last stops on the road to the Olympics for our curling athletes and that our local fans will be able to see it firsthand.”
The 2009 Canada Cup will be one of the last events to qualify teams for the 2009 Tim Hortons Canadian Curling Trials, which will be staged in November or early December (at a site to be announced) to determine the teams that will represent Canada at the 2010 Olympic Winter Games in Vancouver.
The Canada Cup winners, similar to the Tim Hortons Brier and Scotties Tournament of Hearts, become part of the pool of 16 men’s and 16 women’s teams eligible for either a berth directly into the Trials or a berth into the pre-Trials qualifier, expected to be held a month in advance.
The ‘Cup’ has been staged in Kamloops, British Columbia, under the Strauss Canada Cup banner, since its inception in 2003.
However, with the city of Kamloops also bidding for the 2009 Trials, the local host committee felt it was impossible to focus efforts on staging both events there next year, even though the Trials site is not expected to be confirmed for another month or so.
Negotiations are also currently on-going with Strauss Herb Company, the Kamloops-based title sponsor of the Canada Cup, to continue its involvement in 2009 and beyond.
Since the inaugural Canada Cup in 2003, the event has consistently attracted Trials-type fields. Edmonton’s Randy Ferbey has won three men’s Cups, while Kevin Martin has taken two. Past women’s winners are Sherry Middaugh, Colleen Jones, Shannon Kleibrink, Cathy King and Jennifer Jones.
This year’s lineup for the $150,000 Strauss Canada Cup, February 27-March 2 at the Interior Savings Centre, includes Randy Ferbey, 2002 Olympic silver medallist Kevin Martin, 2006 Olympic gold medallist Brad Gushue, reigning world champions Glenn Howard and Kelly Scott, Jennifer Jones, 2006 Olympic bronze medallist Shannon Kleibrink, Cathy King and former world champions Jeff Stoughton and Kerry Burtnyk.
Ten men’s and 10 women’s teams will compete, with the winners, in addition to earning $25,000 in prize money, receiving berths into the Trials pool, the 2008 Continental Cup in Camrose, Alberta and the 2009 Canada Cup in Yorkton as defending champions.
With today’s announcement, the championship curling events confirmed to date for the 2008-09 season in Canada are as follows:
- 2008 Continental Cup, December 18-21, Camrose, Alberta
- 2009 M&M Meat Shops Cdn. Juniors, January 31-February 8, Salmon Arm, BC
- 2009 Scotties Tournament of Hearts, February 21-March 1, Victoria, BC
- 2009 World Juniors, March 5-15, Vancouver, British Columbia
- 2009 Tim Hortons Brier, March 7-15, Calgary, Alberta
- 2009 Canada Cup, March 18-22, Yorkton, Saskatchewan
- 2009 Ford World Men’s, April 4-12, Moncton, New Brunswick