Back to Fort Mac!

The Suncor Community Leisure Centre in Fort McMurray, Alta., will host the 2021 New Holland Canadian Junior Curling Championships. (Photo, courtesy Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo).

New Holland Canadian Juniors returning to Fort McMurray, Alta.

Canada’s best Under-21 curling teams are headed to Alberta’s north country for the second time, it was announced today by Curling Canada.

The 2021 New Holland Canadian Junior Men’s and Women’s Curling Championships will be played March 15-23 at the Suncor Community Leisure Centre at MacDonald Island Park.

The same facility also played host to the 2013 Canadian Juniors — the first time Fort McMurray had ever hosted a national championship curling event.

“We saw an amazing show in 2013, and we knew it was only a matter of time before we returned to Fort Mac,” said John Shea, Chair of Curling Canada’s Board of Governors. “MacDonald Island Park is just a superb facility, and it will give fans the chance to watch our country’s future superstars under one roof. I’m confident that we’ll be treated to a wonderful event by the Fort McMurray host committee.”

As was the case in 2013, games during the 2021 New Holland Canadian Juniors will be played in both the CNRL Arena 2 as well as in the Curling Rink, home of the Fort McMurray Oilsands Curling Club, which is part of the Suncor Community Leisure Centre.

The Fort McMurray Oilsands Curling Club.

“We look forward to welcoming Canada’s best Under-21 curlers to our region in 2021,” said Don Scott, Mayor of the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo.  “Hosting the New Holland Canadian Junior Men’s and Women’s Curling Championships is an opportunity to showcase our region and its world-class facilities, as well as to see Canada’s next generation of curling stars up-close and in action.”

New Holland, a global leader in the manufacturing and selling of agricultural and construction equipment, continues its support of junior curling as the title sponsor for the most prestigious national junior curling championship events in the world.

“We’re excited to see the New Holland Canadian Juniors return to Alberta and the community of Fort McMurray,” said Brett Davis, Vice-President, New Holland, North America. “New Holland proudly supports the country’s best young curlers and, through our extensive dealer network in Canada, the local curling clubs. It’s an honour and privilege to be a partner of the great sport of curling.”

While it will be the second edition of the New Holland Canadian Juniors to be played in Fort McMurray, it will be the sixth time the combined men’s and women’s event has been played in Alberta — in 2013 at Fort McMurray, 2011 and 1998 at Calgary, 1996 at Edmonton and 1991 at Leduc.

Prior to that, three editions of the Canadian Junior Men’s Championship (1986 at Red Deer, 1975 at Edmonton and 1959 at Calgary) and two Canadian Junior Women’s Championships (1983 at Calgary, 1974 at Edmonton) were played in Alberta.

In 2013, Manitoba’s Matt Dunstone and B.C.’s Corryn Brown won the men’s and women’s gold medals respectively.

“It’s going to be a thrill for Fort McMurray to bring back the New Holland Canadian Juniors in 2021 and see our future Canadian and world champions, and Olympians, in action,” said Jill Richard, Executive Director of Curling Alberta. “We all know that region is known for its hospitality and volunteer spirit, so there’s no question that this will be a great event in 2021.”

The Canadian Junior Men’s Championship has been contested annually since its inception in 1950 in Quebec City. The first Canadian Junior Women’s Championship was played in 1971 at Vancouver. The events were combined in 1987 at Prince Albert, Sask.

Alberta has won a leading 16 junior men’s titles while Saskatchewan is second with 14. In women’s, Saskatchewan boasts a leading 11 victories, followed by Alberta with 10.

“We are excited for the opportunity to host New Holland Canadian Junior Men’s and Women’s Curling Championships at MacDonald Island Park and welcome the nation to the region,” said Tyler Spitzer, Host Committee Co-Chair. “Showcasing the high level of talent at this event will inspire local youth and offer amazing sporting entertainment opportunities for the community.”

The winners of the 2021 New Holland Canadian Juniors will represent Canada at the 2022 World Junior Championships (dates, location, TBA by World Curling Federation).

The 2020 New Holland Canadian Junior Men’s and Women’s Championships begin Saturday in Langley, B.C.

Canada has won a leading 21 world junior men’s titles since 1975 and 11 women’s crowns since 1988. B.C.’s Tyler Tardi won his second straight gold medal at the 2019 World Junior Championships last February in Liverpool, N.S., while the most recent Canadian women’s world gold medallist was skipped by Nova Scotia’s Kaitlyn Jones at the 2018 World Juniors in Aberdeen, Scotland.

Curling Canada