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Tuesday, January 28, 2020

Episode 62 - Julie Skinner

Julie Skinner was always driven. Recognizing this, she was hesitant to return to curling when Kelly Law asked her to play third years after she'd stepped away. With the support of her family, Julie jumped head first into her second act and it led to a World Championship and Olympic medal. We discuss the early success with wins at two Junior Canadian Championships including a World Juniors in 1988, followed by her first Scotties victory in 1991. Julie explains why she left in her prime, why she returned then left again, and all the hurdles that came along the way including the bizarre method used to determine tie-breakers at the 1992 Scotties.

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Monday, January 13, 2020

Episode 61 - Don Bartlett, Part 3

Don Bartlett returns for more conversation. He shares thoughts on the Brier boycott era and Team Martin with Carter Rycroft. Don discusses the Ferbey Four, playing a bonspiel with Paul Gowsell, split times and 5 rock Free Guard Zone. You can also hear Don Bartlett on Episodes 39 and 40.


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Tuesday, January 7, 2020

Episode 60 - Peter Gallant

Peter Gallant never took to skating. His father was a hockey coach and while his older brother reached for a stick and puck, he chose a broom and slider. His choice led to nine Brier appearances with Prince Edward Island and a Canadian Mixed title in 1987. Peter started coaching with son Brett,  winning a Canadian Junior Championship in 2009. Years later Peter landed a role with South Korea where he coached Team Kim Eun-jung to a silver medal at the 2018 Winter Olympics in their home country. Peter shares stories from his early years, the Brier experiences and provides a glimpse into PEI curling history.

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Thursday, November 14, 2019

Episode 59 - Ray Grant

Ray Grant's father Andy felt one trip to the Brier was enough. After skipping Ontario at the first Regina Brier in 1955, Andy's experience was so fantastic he believed every competitive curler should be given a chance to go. However, they did return to the 1958 Brier in Victoria, with Murray Roberts now skipping. A loss to Northern Ontario in their final draw kept them from what could have been a three team play-off with Alberta's Matt Baldwin and the young Terry Braunstein Rink from Manitoba. Ray returned as skip to his third Brier in 1965 in Saskatoon. He shares stories of those years, trips on the Brier train, great teams they faced and the many big moments along the way.


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Tuesday, November 5, 2019

Episode 58 - Bernie Sparkes

Bernie Sparkes loves the Brier. From his first purple heart as second for Ron Northcott in 1966 to his twelfth and final appearance skipping British Columbia in 1987, every visit to the Canadian Men's Curling Championship meant as much as the last. Bernie shares stories of the highs and lows at the top of the sport for over two decades. In between we'll cover Fred Storey sweeping techniques and how to repair blisters, along with practical jokes and the importance of team dynamics. Bernie also reveals a ploy he used to generate offense and explains why it didn't work on Paul Gowsell.

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Monday, October 7, 2019

Episode 57 - Earle Morris

Earle Morris always knew how to prepare. Years before appearing in a Brier he studied the best teams, collecting binders of notes on how to approach the game. Travelling with the military made it difficult to establish himself but eventually Earle skipped Team Manitoba at the Brier in 1980. He won Quebec in 1982 as third for Don Aitken and returned again in 1985 as skip of Ontario, becoming the first player to represent three different provinces at the Brier. Earle shares stories from his upbringing in Saskatchewan, through the Brier runs to his brief tenure with the Canadian Curling Association ahead of the 1988 Olympics in Calgary. We also discuss his development as a coach and thoughts on team chemistry. Stay tuned at the end for an extra tale from the 2005 Olympic Trials and analysis of the final end from the 2009 Mens World Championship.

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

Episode 56 - Pat Sanders

Pat Sanders was always determined to knock over obstacles.  Still a knee slider when starting university, she changed her delivery and fought to make the school team, later moving from toe slide to flat foot to improve even further.  Reaching the womens ranks, she by-passed the pecking order of positions and skipped at an age most would have started at lead.  In 1985 she won a Canadian mixed as third for Steve Skillings and then led her rink of Louise Herlinveaux, Georgina Hawkes and Deb Massullo to a Canadian and World Championship in 1987.  As Team Canada the following season, their toxic chemistry put them under the eye of the Canadian Curling Association.  Despite a black cloud over the squad, they lost the 1988 Scotties final on last rock.  Pat and Georgina then joined with lead Melissa Soligo and young phenom Julie Sutton as skip. By the late stages of the 1989 Scotties however, Julie had been demoted and Pat skipped the team to a tie-breaker where they lost to Saskatchewan.  Pat shares her thoughts on that era and the renewed joy for curling she found years later competing in Seniors and Masters.

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