The Champion’s Cup or the Grand Slam of Curling viewed a spectacle of a game with maestro Brad Gushue and his brigade comprising of team members Russ Howard, Mark Nichols, Jamie Korab and Mike Adam; leading to a victorious game and registering themselves in record books. Gushue crowned a triumphant 7-0 run in the season finale of Pinty’s Grand Slam of Curling tournament with an 8-2 decision over Glenn Howard in Sunday’s final at WinSport Arena.
The St. John’s, N.L., the crew of Gushue, third Mark Nichols, second Brett Gallant and lead Geoff Walker have now achieved all seven top-tier titles in the series. Gushue has collected 10 in total, out of which nine have come since Nichols returned the team at the beginning of the Olympic cycle in 2014. Gushue was quoted saying, “It’s awesome,” and stated the Brier and world silver medal. “To win all seven of them, it’s been an amazing run that we’ve had over the last four years to win nine. It’s pretty crazy. I’m very proud of the team with the way we performed. I think we all wanted to check that one off this week. After a long season, I thought we brought some energy this week, but we’re glad it’s over. Glad the year’s over.”
Team Gushue also reported ideal records at the Tour Challenge Tier 1 and Masters tournaments to capture back-to-back GSOC titles at the beginning of the season and minted in the Rogers Cup $75,000 bonus prize prior this month in Toronto throughout the Players’ Championship. Brad also said, “It’s been a great year” “Really when you look at it, it was a bit of a roller coaster from losing the trials, the mixed trials and then the worlds. To win three Slams, win the Brier, if you had told me at the beginning of the year that we would have this season, I would have taken it in a heartbeat. It’s been pretty amazing.”
Gushue received a cheque for $40,000 and the opportunity to secure the title with a berth in next year’s round in Saskatoon. “We needed two [Tour Challenge and Champions Cup] coming into this year, and we got them both,” Gushue said.
“Those were the ones we were gunning for this year and obviously the Rogers Cup, which we were able to achieve in Toronto. That one’s important because that shows the consistency.”
“I’m just super proud of our team with the way we played. Glenn was vintage Glenn there for five ends. He made some great shots, and we kept applying the pressure and got a miss there in the sixth that broke the game open. That was fun. It was a fun day.”
Brad was elated to already book a place in the next year’s Champion’s Cup.
Although specifically, there is yet one more title left in the series for Gushue to win — the Tour Challenge Tier 2 — but don’t expect him to flunk it so as to dive into that field, particularly now that his team rests at No. 1 on the Order of Merit world team ranking.