Come get your duds in order, Brad Gushue and his crew from old St. John’s are bound for Conception Bay South, N.L., as they heave away to the 2019 BOOST National.
The Pinty’s Grand Slam of Curling announced Thursday the field for its third event and second major of the 2019-20 season — returning Dec. 10-15 to CBS Arena — featuring 15 of the top men’s teams and 15 of the top women’s teams from around the world.
Local favourites Team Gushue, winners of 11 titles in the series, currently top the Pinty’s Cup standings with back-to-back runner-up results to start the Pinty’s Grand Slam of Curling season. Could the third time be the charm and on home ice to boot?
Among those looking to turf Team Gushue on their home turf including recently crowned KIOTI Tractor Tour Challenge champions Team Brad Jacobs of Sault Ste. Marie, Ont. Jacobs defeated Gushue this past Sunday in Pictou County, N.S., to win his fifth career GSOC title.
Masters winners Team Matt Dunstone of Regina, reigning Pinty’s Cup champions Team Kevin Koe of Calgary, world No. 1 Team John Epping of Toronto, defending BOOST National champions Team Ross Paterson from Scotland plus Edmonton’s Team Brendan Bottcher, who captured three GSOC titles last season, also look to be heavy favourites to contend.
The women’s division features defending BOOST National champions Team Rachel Homan of Ottawa, recent KIOTI Tractor Tour Challenge winners Team Anna Hasselborg of Sweden, world No. 1 Team Kerri Einarson from Gimli, Man., Masters champions Team Tracy Fleury of East St. Paul, Man., nine-time GSOC title winners Team Jennifer Jones of Winnipeg, and many more.
A combined prize purse of $300,000 is on the line with the winners earning $35,000 plus berths to the season-ending Humpty’s Champions Cup in Olds, Alta. Points are also up for grabs towards the Pinty’s Cup, which is awarded to the season champions in the series following the conclusion of the Players’ Championship in April.
Teams were invited to the BOOST National based on the World Curling Tour’s Order of Merit rankings as of Nov. 5. In the event a team declined, the next-ranked team on the Order of Merit received an invitation until the field was complete. Both men’s and women’s divisions will be split into three pools of five for round-robin play with the top eight overall advancing to the playoffs. Pools have yet to be determined as they will be seeded per the rankings next Tuesday.Broadcast coverage begins Dec. 12 at 11 a.m. ET on Sportsnet and streaming online via Sportsnet NOW (Canada) and Yare (international).
2019 BOOST National teams
|Men’s Division||Women’s Division|
|Team Brendan Bottcher (Edmonton, AB)||Team Chelsea Carey (Calgary, AB)|
|Team Peter de Cruz (Geneva, SUI)||Team Kerri Einarson (Gimli, MB)|
|Team Matt Dunstone (Regina, SK)||Team Tracy Fleury (East St. Paul, MB)|
|Team Niklas Edin (Karlstad, SWE)||Team Satsuki Fujisawa (Kitami, JPN)|
|Team John Epping (Toronto, ON)||Team Anna Hasselborg (Sundbyberg, SWE)|
|Team Brad Gushue (St. John’s, NL)||Team Rachel Homan (Ottawa, ON)|
|Team Glenn Howard (Penetanguishene, ON)||Team Jennifer Jones (Winnipeg, MB)|
|Team Brad Jacobs (Sault Ste. Marie, ON)||Team Eve Muirhead (Stirling, SCO)|
|Team Kevin Koe (Calgary, AB)||Team Kelsey Rocque (Edmonton, AB)|
|Team Yuta Matsumura (Kitami, JPN)||Team Casey Scheidegger (Lethbridge, AB)|
|Team Scott McDonald (Kingston, ON)||Team Robyn Silvernagle (North Battleford, SK)|
|Team Mike McEwen (Winnipeg, MB)||Team Elena Stern (Oberwallis, SUI)|
|Team Bruce Mouat (Edinburgh, SCO)||Team Silvana Tirinzoni (Aarau, SUI)|
|Team Ross Paterson (Glasgow, SCO)||Team Isabella Wrana (Stockholm, SWE)|
|Team Yannick Schwaller (Bern, SUI)||Team Sayaka Yoshimura (Sapporo, JPN)|