He says, "Following hard on the heels of the very successful World Junior Curling Championships held at Dewar's Centre in March 2011, forty teams, including twenty one from overseas, applied to take part in the Perth Masters 2012. The organising committee have narrowed them down to thirty-two and believe they have assembled one of the most exciting fields ever to be seen in Scotland. Combine this with an increased prize pot totalling £17,000, a first prize of £6,000, and the weekend of January 5-8, 2012, is shaping up to be a Curling Bonanza!"
A place in the draw has been kept for the winner of the Curl Atlantic Championship which will take place September 23-26 at the Tantramar Veterans Civic Centre in Sackville, New Brunswick. The goal of this event is 'to better prepare High Performance Atlantic Curling Teams for the national and international stage'. The prize for the winning men's team is to come to Perth. The best women's team will go to Berne for the 2012 Bernese Ladies Cup.
Other Canadian teams in the Perth Masters draw are skipped by Brad Gushue, Steve Laycock and Mike McEwen.
A feature of the Ramada Perth Masters this year will be the use of time clocks to count only 'thinking time', rather than the conventional way as used in major championships. This approach has been talked about for a while, so it is good to see it being trialled at Perth. The plan is to do this for the knockout stages only.
The Ramada Perth Masters website is here. The Masters is one of the events which make up the Curling Champions Tour.