Friday, December 13, 2013

Calgary to host first Brier pre-qualifying and non-US Continental Cup

It's pretty hard to keep secrets these days and so just about everyone already knew that the 2015 Tim Hortons Brier was headed to . . . Calgary. That also means Cowtown will be the site of the first pre-qualifying for the men's national championship as the format change comes into play for that edition. 

No longer will there be the 10 provinces, Northern Ontario and Territories rinks which seems to have worked well for everyone but the 11 curlers in Nunavut. Now there will be a playdown for the final spots and we'll also see a Team Canada and a Northern Ontario team for the first time. 

But back to Calgary, which Warren Hansen said in this Calgary Sun story, offers up the perfect combination of what the CCA looks for in a host site: money and even more money  and history. 

“We know the economy of Calgary is very strong, we know the curling history of Calgary is fantastic,” said Warren Hansen, the CCA’s director of event operations. “If there was anything that was going to help us make what we’re planning here for 2015 work, it would be the city. We’re confident that’s going to take place.”

Not only is Calgary getting the Brier, but it's also going to host the Continental Cup the very same year. That's a first and a bit of a shocker. That event is also changing formats. The CCA recently announced it was taking the Cup over from the WCF and so it's going to punt the Americans to the side and just have Canada take on a team from Europe one year and then the World the next.  That makes a heck of a lot of sense.

“We’ve always had this nagging thing, with our own athletes even, that they wanted to have Canada playing against the rest of Europe,” Hansen said. “Having it be Canada that’s going against first Europe, and then the world (it will rotate every year) will make it a little more attractive.”

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