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Team Thomas makes move in CTRS race

With most of the top teams in the world on hiatus last weekend, it seemed like an ideal opportunity for some of the rest of the teams to make up some ground in the Canadian Team Ranking System race. Unfortunately, the teams that had the most to gain came up a bit short by the end of World Curling Tour: Week 12.

Charley Thomas skipped his team to victory on home ice in Calgary over the weekend. (Photo, World Curling Federation)

Charley Thomas skipped his team to victory on home ice in Calgary over the weekend. (Photo, World Curling Federation)

Of the men’s teams playing this weekend, only Edmonton’s Charley Thomas impacted the CTRS top 10. After winning the Original 16 WCT Bonspiel in Calgary, he earned 23.171 points and passed Penetanguishene, Ont.’s Glenn Howard, and moved into ninth place.

Charlottetown’s Adam Casey,Quebec’s Jean Michel Menard, and Edmonton’s Mick Lizmore  also made moderate gains. Casey was a semifinalist at the Cookstown Cash presented by Combo Canada Inc. and collected 22.084 points, while Menard won the Finale du Circuit in Trois-Rivieres, Que., for 16.252 points. Lizmore’s team was a semifinalist in Calgary, and earned 14.068 points. Menard, Lizmore (competing this week at the Canadian Mixed Championship in Toronto) and Casey now sit 14th, 15th and 16th respectively.

Harriston, Ont.’s Brent Ross reached the final in Cookstown, but lost to Switzerland’s Peter de Cruz. Ross gained 28.58 points, but being his first big score of the year, he still sits quite a ways back in the CTRS race.

Toronto’s John Epping had an opportunity to gain several CTRS spots, but it wasn’t his weekend. A good finish could have pushed him from 20th to as high as 11th on the rankings, but after failing to qualify for playoffs, he stays well back from the leaders.

The women’s weekend events saw big opportunities for Calgary’s Chelsea Carey and Saskatoon’s Stefanie Lawton go unrealized. The two teams sat 5th and 8th respectively in the CTRS women’s standings and were both looking to cash in at the Colonial Square Ladies Classic in Saskatoon. Unfortunately for the two squads, they both failed to reach the playoff rounds, while three Ontario teams made big jumps.

Thunder Bay’s Krista McCarville ended up winning the Saskatoon event, scoring her first 55.133 points of the year. She beat Delisle, Sask.’s Sherry Anderson in the final, which earned Anderson 43.3191 points.

Ontario’s Alli Flaxey reached the semifinals, worth 23.6286 points; good enough to move her into 7th on the CTRS list. Meanwhile, in Kemptville, Ont., Jacqueline Harrison (Mississauga, Ont.) won the Royal LePage OVCA Women’s Fall Classic, taking home 34.9090 points which moves her team into the 10th spot on the Canadian rankings.

After only a day off, attention will now shift to Oshawa, Ont., for the Pinty’s Grand Slam of Curling event: The National. Action at the General Motors Centre will kick off at 7 p.m. Tuesday night.

About Brian Chick

Brian Chick is a life-long curler and coach, and a frequent contributor to the Curling Canada's multimedia and development projects.