Andrew Symonds and his St. John’s rink ended up just off the podium with a fourth-place finish at the Travelers national club curling championships in Kingston, Ont., over the weekend.
Symonds, third Mark Healy, second Dave Noftall and lead Keith Jewer lost 10-4 to Alberta in the bronze-medal game Saturday.
The Symonds rink, representing Newfoundland and Labrador out of the Re/Max Centre, made it to a Friday-night semifinal, but fell 5-2 to British Columbia, which would go on to claim gold with a victory over Manitoba in the championship final.
Symonds was seeking a second Traveler’s championship in the last three years; he, Healy and Keith Jewer, along with Cory Ewart, won the title in 2015.
Symonds didn’t compete in the national event in 2016; Travelers regulations don’t permit defending champions to return the following year.
The Travelers is most often referred to as a club championship, but is very much a national tier 2 event designed to provide a high level of competition for curlers who haven’t recently taken part in provincial, national or Grand Slam events.
Each team is allowed just one player who has played in a provincial/territorial championship (junior, men’s, women’s or senior) or in a full-field Grand Slam event in the current or previous four curling seasons.
As well, no player on Travelers teams can have played in a Canadian junior, men’s (Brier), women’s (Scotties) or senior national championship in the current or previous four seasons.
The women’s Travelers championship was held concurrently in Kingston. Newfoundland, represented by the St. John’s rink of Wendy Dunne, Jennifer Taylor, Andrea Heffernan and Susie Ennis, finished with a 1-5 record.