Wednesday, January 12, 2011

The Continental Cup

David Murdoch (above) is the only Scot in The World team that takes on North America in the 2011 World Financial Group Continental Cup, presented by Monsanto, which gets underway tomorrow, Thursday, at Servus Credit Union Place in St. Albert, Alberta, Canada.

January is a new time slot for the event which features six teams from North America against six teams representing The World, in a variety of disciplines – Team Games (72 points), Mixed Doubles (36 points), Singles (32 points) and Skins (260 points). The first side to reach 201 points is declared the winner.

The competition is a joint venture of the Canadian Curling Association, the World Curling Federation and the United States Curling Association.

Although past events have been popular with competitors and the Canadian fans (all previous competitions have been staged in Canada), the event has been largely ignored in Europe. The reason for this is that we've never had the opportunity to watch any of it.

This year the Canadian TV broadcaster TSN will provide live coverage of the World Financial Group Continental Cup 2011 for viewers in Canada. And, in association with the World Curling Federation, TSN will provide web-streamed LIVE coverage to viewers outside Canada which will be available on the WCF website – I will be interested to hear comment from anyone who watches here. Perhaps a good subject for a thread on the Scottish Curling Forum?

Team games, at eight ends only, will be played Thursday and Friday, as will two Mixed Doubles sessions. On Saturday, the A and B Skins games, including Mixed Skins, will be held, along with the Singles competition. On Sunday, the women’s and men’s final Skins games will be contested.

This year, the winning side will receive $52,000 Cdn ($2,000 per member, including captain and coach), while the losing side gets $26,000 ($1,000 per member, including captain and coach). As well, the side which wins the final Men’s Skins game will receive an additional $13,000.

Here's the link to a previous blog post which lists the teams, as well as my reservations about the whole business. Perhaps if I get the chance to watch some of the event live, I may be persuaded to change my mind!

Photo of David Murdoch is from the Le Gruyere European Curling Championships at Champery, and is © Skip Cottage.