Brad Gushue and his St. John’s rink won their first game of their last event in the 2017-18 curling season when they defeated Tyler Tardi’s British Columbia foursome 8-3 Wednesday at the Humpty’s Champions Cup in Calgary.
The Champions Cup is also the final event of the Pinty’s Grand Slam of Curling schedule. It also happens to be the only Grand Slam event Gushue has never won, although he hasn’t had many opportunities to do so. The Champions Cup is the newest Grand Slam event — this is only its third year.
On Wednesday, Gushue, Mark Nichols, Brett Gallant and Geoff Walker jumped to a 5-1 lead by scoring four in the fourth end against Tardi, the reigning world junior men’s champion, and finished things with three more in the sixth.
Gushue and his two-time Brier champions face Brad Jacobs and his Northern Ontario rink tonight and finish the preliminary schedule with two games Friday against American Rich Ruhonen and Manitoba’s Reid Carruthers.
The Champions Cup features 15 men’s teams and 15 women’s teams which have won events over the course of the season in order to qualify for entry.
Teams play four round-robin games, with the top eight overall advancing to the weekend playoffs.