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CurlManitoba Introduces New Men's Championship Title Sponsor

Wednesday Oct 07 2015

First VITERRA CHAMPIONSHIP in Selkirk in February, 2016

CurlManitoba has announced that Viterra Inc. has signed a partnership agreement which will see the grain industry leader become the title sponsor of the Manitoba Men’s Curling Championship for the next 2 years. Viterra becomes only the fourth title sponsor of the championship since 1925 when Hall of Fame legend Howard Wood Sr. won the first Manitoba men’s title in 1925. The first Viterra Championship will take place at the Selkirk Recreation Centre February 9-14, 2016.

Viterra joins Macdonald Tobacco (1925-1979 British Consols); Labatts (1980 – 1994 Labatt Tankard); and Safeway (1995-2006 Safeway Select, 2007-2015 Safeway Championship) as the only sponsors of the championship in 90 years. The company became a CurlManitoba partner in 2014 as title sponsor of the first Manitoba Mixed Doubles Trials.

"We're excited about our new partnership with CurlManitoba, which is a great opportunity to support one of the province’s premier sporting events, as well as local talent from across its communities,” said Kyle Jeworski, Viterra's President and CEO for North America.  “Most importantly, the values exhibited by our curlers – integrity, respect for others, and teamwork – are qualities that are shared by our employees as they work to provide our farm customers with superior service.”

‘We are very pleased to have Viterra join us in the presentation of Manitoba’s premier men’s curling event,” says CurlManitoba Executive Director Craig Baker. “Competitors and curling fans alike can look forward to the Viterra Championship with anticipation that our relationship with Viterra will help maintain and even enhance an already exceptional championship event.”

Qualifying for the first Viterra Championship has already begun. Harkening back to the Granite Curling Club roots of the first ever Manitoba champion, a Granite team skipped by Taylor McIntyre (Sam Good, Riley Smith, Jared Hancox) won the spring 2015 qualifying berth bonspiel in Killarney. In addition, 2015 champion Reid Carruthers and his West St. Paul foursome (Braden Moskowy, Derek Samagalski, Colin Hodgson) earned their return trip as provincial champion. Last season’s provincial finalist Mike McEwen and his Fort Rouge team (BJ Neufeld, Matt Wozniak, Denni Neufeld) qualified as the highest placed Manitoba team on the Canadian Team Ranking System (CTRS) at the conclusion of the 2014-15 season.

Twenty-nine teams will join Team McIntyre in Selkirk in February. They will qualify as follows:
•1 berth awarded to winner of Berth Bonspiel – La Salle (October 30-November 1, 2015)
•2 berths awarded to the top two eligible Manitoba teams on CTRS on December 10, 2015.
•1 berth awarded to winner (or highest finishing eligible team) of Manitoba Curling Tour Championship – Dauphin (December 11-13, 2015)
•3 berths awarded to the top ranked eligible teams on the Manitoba Curling Tour ranking after the MCT championship.
•18 berths awarded through CurlManitoba Regional Playoffs (December 18-20, 2015)
•1 berth awarded to winner (or highest finishing eligible team) of Brandon Bonspiel (January 7-10, 2016)
•3 berths awarded through the Manitoba Open bonspiel – Winnipeg (January 14-18, 2016)

The 2016 Viterra Championship will be the fifth Manitoba Men’s Championship played in Selkirk. Four of Manitoba’s favorite curlers have skipped the winning teams in the previous Selkirk events. In 1993, Vic Peters won his second of two Manitoba championships, defending the title his Granite team had won the year before. In 2001, Kerry Burtnyk – Assiniboine Memorial won his fourth of five Manitoba titles. In 2005, Randy Dutiaume and his Valour Road team won the Safeway Select en route to a Brier bronze medal. In 2009, Jeff Stoughton - Charleswood won his seventh of a record eleven Manitoba championships.

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About Viterra: Viterra is Canada's grain industry leader, supported by the expertise of its people, a superior network of assets, and unrivalled connections to world markets. Headquartered in Regina, Saskatchewan, our commitment to agriculture goes back over 100 years, partnering with farmers to market and move their crops to areas of need around the world. Our continued focus on operational excellence throughout North America allows us to efficiently handle, process, distribute and transport grains and oilseeds. We provide further value to our partners through a wide variety of contracting and risk management tools to help them realize the full potential of their crops. For more information on Viterra in North America, please visit Viterra is part of the Agricultural Business Segment of Glencore.

About CurlManitoba: The Manitoba Curling Association operating as CurlManitoba is the provincial sport governing body for the sport of curling in Manitoba. We are a non-profit organization governed by a volunteer Board of Directors established to facilitate the promotion, development and growth of the sport of curling in Manitoba.  We are guided by our members, their expectations and the trust they place in us to act as stewards of the sport.

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