Curling’s version of the Ryder Cup will have greater traction, both on the ice in London, Ont., and on roads and fields across Canada, as two co-title sponsors have been confirmed, it was announced today by Curling Canada.
OK Tire and BKT Tires will be joint sponsors of the annual championship, which will match six Canadian teams against six European teams in a four-day competition featuring a variety of game formats.
The 2020 OK Tire & BKT Tires Continental Cup, presented by Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning and Plumbing, is scheduled for Jan. 9-12 at The Sports Centre at Western Fair District in London, Ont.
“We’re truly excited to welcome OK Tire and BKT Tires to the Curling Canada Season of Champions family of partners, and we know they will enjoy the experience in London,” said Katherine Henderson, Chief Executive Officer of Curling Canada. “Like other partners, OK Tire and BKT Tires see the value in our sport, thanks to the wonderful exposure with our broadcast partners, as well as the passion and brand loyalty of our fans from coast to coast.”
OK Tire is the largest independent tire and auto service retailer in Canada and the fourth largest in North America. Part of the Canadian landscape since 1953, there are more than 300 independently owned and operated OK Tire locations across the country. Each franchise is unique within its geographical area, tailoring its offerings to meet customers’ needs, and covering everything in, around, on or behind any vehicle.
“OK Tire is proud to partner with Curling Canada,” said Jim Caldwell, President and CEO of OK Tire. “We know how important the game of curling is across the country and how it brings the communities we also serve together. We are pleased to support Canadians’ love of the game.”
Since its founding in 1987, BKT Tires has successfully focused on specialist segments such as agricultural, construction and industrial vehicles, as well as earth-moving, port and mining, ATV, and gardening applications. As a result, BKT has developed into a global player in the off-highway tire industry.
“We are very excited about this partnership,” said Rajiv Poddar, Joint Managing Director of Balkrishna Industries (BKT). “In BKT we love sports and we support numerous initiatives all over the world. We truly believe sports reflect our values, such as: fair play, team spirit, commitment. Also, curling is a well-loved discipline in Canada and that is getting more and more attention all over the world and can guarantee us an optimal exposure, especially the Continental Cup! We are looking forward to it.”
Already qualified for Team Canada for the 2020 OK Tire & BKT Tires Continental Cup are teams skipped by Tim Hortons Brier champ Kevin Koe of Calgary, Scotties Tournament of Hearts champion Chelsea Carey of Calgary, as well as Brendan Bottcher of Edmonton and Rachel Homan of Ottawa; the latter two qualified based on their 2018-19 Canadian Team Ranking System performance.
Team Canada will be led by Coach Jeff Stoughton, with support from the husband-and-wife tandem of Heather (Assistant Coach) and David Nedohin (Captain).
Defending champion Team Europe will feature reigning world champs Niklas Edin (Sweden) and Silvana Tirinzoni (Switzerland), Olympic gold-medallist Anna Hasselborg of Sweden, along with Peter de Cruz (Switzerland) and the Scottish tandem of Eve Muirhead and Bruce Mouat.
Team Europe’s off-ice staff consists of Coach David Murdoch of Scotland, Captain Fredrik Lindberg of Sweden and Assistant Coach Christoffer Svae of Norway.
Tickets for the 2020 OK Tire & BKT Tires Continental Cup are available online at curling.ca/tickets or by calling (833) 219-9444.