It’s difficult to believe that the 2009-10 Olympic year that everyone so eagerly anticipated has come and gone. What a year it was for the sport of curling!
The Canadian Curling Association is very pleased to have had numerous achievements this past year, highlighted by the 2010 Olympic Winter Games and other key successes.
The year was filled with high expectations and a great deal of pressure for many of our Canadian athletes. These talented individuals could not have done a better job of representing our nation.
Our organization is so proud to be a part of their success and it is an honour to help contribute toward these accomplishments. Canada’s continued excellence saw Team Canada reach the podium in 11 out of 11 international championships in which CCA-sanctioned teams participated. These performances were highlighted by the incredible men’s gold medal and women’s silver medal at the Vancouver Olympics. Our Paralympic team was equally impressive, also winning gold at the 2010 Paralympic Winter Games.
Other successes included a gold medal at the World Men’s Curling Championship; a gold and a silver at the World Seniors; a silver and a bronze at the World Juniors; a bronze at the Ford World Women’s; and a double gold-medal performance by the CIS-CCA Canadian University curling champions at the 2010 Karuizawa Invitational in Japan.
I would also like to commend Canadian Mixed champions Mark Dacey and his wife, Heather Smith-Dacey, for their amazing passion and unflagging efforts to represent their country at the World Mixed Doubles Championship in Chelyabinsk, Russia, in April. They were forced to withdraw from the competition — as were the teams of four other countries — when an Icelandic volcano erupted, causing widespread travel disruption.
TELEVISION NUMBERS AND BROADCAST EXCELLENCE
Last year was a record-setting year for curling’s television numbers. The Season of Champions broadcasts generated, by far and away, its largest total of “gross impressions” ever. These impressions provided almost double the amount of corporate brand exposure to the CCA’s partners and sponsors than they had in previous seasons.
Thanks to the CCA’s exclusive broadcast partnership with TSN, some 270 hours were broadcast live to our fans.
The Season of Champions coverage was augmented by some of the most exciting curling ever seen at the Olympics. Television drew the highest numbers ever to watch the women’s and men’s Olympic gold-medal games — 6.8 million and 6.9 million fans in Canada, respectively, to cheer on Cheryl Bernard and Kevin Martin.
SEASON OF CHAMPIONS AND OTHER CHAMPIONSHIPS
CCA events were once again showcased throughout the year in some wonderful venues and communities across Canada. The CCA’s Season of Champions properties are the pinnacle of the sport and were well supported by our incredible fans.
The 2010 Season of Champions began in early November in Prince George, British Columbia, with the first ever Road To The Roar Canadian Curling Pre-Trials, followed by the Tim Hortons Roar Of The Rings Canadian Curling Trials in Edmonton; the M&M Meat Shops Canadian Juniors in Sorel-Tracy, Quebec; the Scotties Tournament of Hearts in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, and the Tim Hortons Brier in Halifax. The season ended with the Ford World Women’s in Swift Current, Saskatchewan.
The CCA reported at the Canadian National Curling Congress in June that, for a third consecutive year, it finished the fiscal year in the black and with a positive financial outlook. The surplus for 2009-10 far exceeded the projected budget.
The CCA’s financial success led to the establishment of a long-term financial reserve fund to which almost all of the surpluses from the past three years have been allocated. With the CCA now being managed as a business and multiple initiatives to assist in its continued progress, I am very pleased to see that financial stability has been the number-one priority. Our senior staff, board of governors and our stakeholders are to be commended for this group effort.
THE NEXT QUADRENNIAL
Like any Olympic sport, curling is closely aligned to the Olympic quadrennial and its four-year planning cycle. With 2011 now upon us, I can assure our stakeholders and fans alike that the Canadian Curling Association is as committed as ever to provide and facilitate the best possible experience for both curlers and fans throughout Canada.
To this end, our organization has just released a 2010-2014 Business Plan And Organizational Strategy to act as an operational roadmap for excellence for our national governing body.
Good curling to everyone!
Chief Executive Officer
Canadian Curling Association