Cranbrook to host 2011 Canada Cup of Curling

The City of Cranbrook will stage the 2011 Canada Cup of Curling, it was announced November 03, 2010 by the Canadian Curling Association (CCA). The Canada Cup, which brings together 10 of the best men’s and 10 of the best women’s teams in the country, will be played November 30-December 4, 2011 at the 4,600-seat Cranbrook Recreation Complex (Rec Plex), home of the Kootenay Ice of the Western Hockey League.  Similar to this year’s renewal in Medicine Hat, Alberta, the Canada Cup will be contested as the first event in the CCA’s 2011-2012 Season of Champions.

Photo by: Waferboard on Flickr

“On behalf of the Canadian Curling Association, it is my privilege to announce that the 2011 Canada Cup of Curling has been awarded to the City of Cranbrook,” said Greg Stremlaw, Chief Executive Officer of the CCA.  “The Canadian Curling Association prides itself on trying to find great locations to host our major championships and after our site reviews of the Kootenay region, Cranbrook seemed like a natural fit to host this important event. This will mark the first time the CCA has ever brought a major championship to Cranbrook and we look forward to working with the local community to ensure it is highly worthwhile for all involved.” Since its inception in 2003, the Canada Cup has been won by some of the country’s most successful curling teams.   On the men’s side, Edmonton’s Kevin Martin (2005, 2006, 2009) and Randy Ferbey (2003, 2004, 2007) are both three-time winners, while Kevin Koe, also of Edmonton, emerged victorious in 2008. On the women’s side, only skip Shannon Kleibrink of Calgary is a two-time winner (2005, 2009).  The other winning teams were skipped by Sherry Middaugh (2003), Colleen Jones (2004), Cathy King (2006), Jennifer Jones (2007) and Stefanie Lawton (2008). “We are excited about the opportunity for Cranbrook to host such a world class event as the Canada Cup,” said Tracey Amy, Host Committee Chair.  “The local Canada Cup Committee has been working with the Canadian Curling Association and the city to hammer out the details, in order to provide the community and surrounding area with a chance to watch some of the best Canadian men’s and women’s curling teams compete . “This will have a major economic impact on the area and revive the sport of curling in Cranbrook.  The five-day event at the Rec Plex will need approximately 250-300 volunteers.  There will be an entertainment patch at the curling club where fans can party the night away.  This is an awesome opportunity for the entire area and the City of Cranbrook and we are happy to be working with the city and CCA to host such an event.” Curling events hosted by Cranbrook in past include the 1997 Safeway Select B.C. Men’s Provincial, the 1997 McCain/TSN Skins Game and the 1998 Scotties B.C. Ladies Provincial. The first six Canada Cups, under the title sponsorship of Strauss Herb Company, were played in Kamloops, British Columbia from 2003-2008, before the event moved to Yorkton, Saskatchewan for the 2009 edition.  This year’s Canada Cup will be contested December 1-5 in Medicine Hat. Tickets to the 2011 Canada Cup are expected to go on sale in March.   The Canada Cup will offer a total purse of $150,000, split equally between the men and women.  First place is worth $25,000. The winners of the 2010 Canada Cup, 2011 Scotties Tournament of Hearts in Charlottetown and 2011 Tim Hortons Brier in London will earn invitations to the 2011 Canada Cup.   The remaining 16 teams (eight men’s and eight women’s) will qualify via the Canadian Team Ranking System (CTRS). In addition to returning as defending champions for the 2012 Canada Cup (at a site to be announced), the 2011 Canada Cup winners will also qualify to be part of a pool of teams eligible for the 2013 Tim Hortons Canadian Curling Trials, which will determine Canada’s representatives for the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi, Russia.