Action underway at 14th Canadian Wheelchair Curling Championship

Some familiar names are already making their presence felt as the 14th Canadian Wheelchair Curling Championship got underway Monday in Boucherville, Que., at the Club de curling Boucherville in the Complexe sportif Duval Auto.

Team Manitoba opens the competition in Boucherville, Québec. (Photo, François Lacasse)

Manitoba’s Dennis Thiessen, the 2014 champion and 2014 Paralympic gold medallist, got off to a strong start in the opening draw with a 12-4 win over New Brunswick’s Mike Fitzgerald. Thiessen and his team from the Assiniboine Curling Club stole seven points to put the game out of reach. Also winning on the first day of competition was home-province favourite Benoit Lessard of the Magog Curling Club, the 2013 national champion, who stole the first four ends in an 8-1 win over Newfoundland and Labrador’s Cecilia Carroll. In other games, the 2016 champions from Saskatchewan, skipped this year by Gil Dash, lost a 6-2 decision to Ontario’s Mike Munro. Alberta’s Jack Smart won 8-5 over Northern Ontario’s Doug Dean, the 2016 silver medallist, and Nova Scotia’s Trendal Hubley-Bolivar lost a close 8-9 contest to B.C.’s Gerry Austgarden, the 2015 champion Scores, standings and team information can be found on the event website, at The round robin continues on Tuesday at 11 a.m. and 4 p.m. (all times EDT)