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MANITOBA OPEN: A Chance to Play the Brazilian National Team

Sunday Dec 21 2014

In late-January of 2015, Brazil’s National Men’s Curling team will play a United States team, in a long-shot attempt by Brazil to win a spot in the Ford Worlds in Halifax, NS. The winner of a best of five series of games in Blaine, Minnesota, January 30-February 1, 2015 earns a spot in the Halifax Worlds. (Link HERE for details on the Brazil-USA CHallenge). The rather bold move by the novice curling country is good news for participants in the 2015 Manitoba Open Bonspiel as Team Brazil will play in the bonspiel as their final preparation for the challenge series. Luck of the draw could put any of the teams in the 2015 bonspiel on the ice against the international visitors.

The Brazilian Challenge against the Americans is the third such challenge, with the United States having won in three games in both 2009 and 2010. 

Marcello Mello, a team member and Consultor Técnico Curling (Curling Technical Consultant) for the Brazilian Ice Sports Federation, has taken part in the previous two challenges as well as the 2014 World Mixed Doubles when Brazil posted its first ever international curling victory. Mello acknowledges that the chances of Brazil defeating USA in the challenge matches are not very good but he says they are competitors and good athletes who will do their best to surprise the Americans.

He is very excited about participating in the Manitoba Open in preparation for the games in Minnesota.

“I had heard of the Manitoba bonspiel as the biggest bonspiel in the world but didn’t know much about it until I talked with Chad McMullan,” says Mello. McMullan, who was 1994 Manitoba Mixed Champion and 1999 MCA Bonspiel Grand Aggregate Champion, has been involved as a consultant in the development of curling in Brazil.

“I learned about the bonspiel as a very traditional one where you can have many games, where you can play against a champion first game or you can have a ‘friendly’ first game,” says Mello. “When we can have at least six games just a couple of weeks before the challenge, and we can play in one of the most famous curling places in the world, we thought this could be a very rich experience for us. We decided this would be the best way to do our last preparations.”

The opportunity to compete against Team Brazil is a unique one for participants in the Manitoba Open Bonspiel, and might be considered one of the ‘prizes’ available to all teams along with all members of all teams having a chance to win a trip for two to Las Vegas or participate in a Draw to the Button for a Nott Autocorp $50,000 luxury vehicle.

The Manitoba Open Bonspiel is open to the first 256 teams of any gender or age and the HalfSpiel welcomes the first 64 teams. The countdown reminder on indicates that approximately about 40 entry spaces are left in the Manitoba Open. Entry space is also still available in the HalfSpiel.

Go to for complete details or to enter the January 15-19 event.

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