Olympic gold medallist Marc Kennedy will be taking a break from competitive curling after the season ends.
Team Koe confirmed the news Saturday on social media releasing a statement saying Kennedy made the decision after returning from the 2018 Winter Games in Pyeongchang, South Korea.
Kennedy, who plays third for the Calgary-based crew, will play out the remainder of the 2017-18 Pinty’s Grand Slam of Curling campaign with skip Kevin Koe, second Brent Laing and lead Ben Hebert before stepping back for now.
“It’s a decision I’ve been wrestling with for some time, and a decision we’ve been talking about as a team for a while now,” Kennedy said in the statement. “I have so many great friendships, and so many great experiences, from the sport of curling, so it was not an easy decision to reach. But I’ve got a few injuries that need some time to heal before I can commit to curling again full-time.
“I truly appreciate the support I got from Kevin, Brent and Ben when I told them. We’re definitely looking forward to playing our last three events together later this season.”
— TeamKevinKoe (@TeamKevinKoe) March 3, 2018
The 36-year-old from St. Albert, Alta., captured Olympic gold for Canada with skip Kevin Martin at the 2010 Vancouver Games. Kennedy has also won two world and three Brier championships plus 11 Pinty’s Grand Slam of Curling titles. He represented Canada again at the Winter Games this year alongside Team Koe and finished fourth in the Olympic tournament.
The statement also indicated the rest of the team have no “firm plans” for next season but are looking at potential replacements for Kennedy.
Team Koe’s next tournament is the Princess Auto Elite 10 running March 15-18 at Winnipeg’s St. James Civic Centre.