Canada's curling dominance can be traced back to Manitoba beginning with news of the Manitoba provincial curling in 2020. Jennifer Jones, the greatest Canadian curler is a Manitoban and still going strong through six Scotties Tournament of Hearts titles, two world championships, and an Olympic gold medal.
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Fast facts about the Manitoba provincial curling 2020
- Kerri Einarson and the Gimli Curling Club are the winners of the 2020 Manitoba Scotties Tournament of Hearts
- Jason Gunnlaugson and the Morris Curling Club are the winners of the 2020 Viterra Championship
- Since 2002, Jennifer Jones has won eight of the last 19 Manitoba Scotties Tournament of Hearts
- Jeff Stoughton has the most Viterra Championships with 11
- Einarson is the first Manitoban outside Jennifer Jones to win the Scotties Tournament of Hearts since 1995 when Connie Laliberte won
The Manitoba Scotties Tournament of Hearts is your preview of the top curlers facing off to represent their province, and possibly their country, in the world stage.
Overview of Manitoba's provincial curling 2020 championships
The Manitoba Scotties Tournament of Hearts and Viterra Championship are Manitoba's top provincial curling 2020 championships for women and men, respectively. The winners of each tournament move on to represent Manitoba in the Scotties Tournament of Hearts and Tim Hortons Brier, respectively.
Manitoba's women have been dominant through the curling world in recent years. They have won three of the last six Scotties Tournaments and have finished in the top-three in all but one tournament since 2011.
Kerri Einarson and her team, the Gimli Curling Club, winner of the Manitoba provincial curling in 2020, won Manitoba its 11th title this year. Notably, Manitoban Jennifer Jones, who finished second in the Manitoba Scotties Tournament of Hearts, finished third with her wild card team.
The Manitoba women's provincial curling in 2020 was another classic as Kerri Einarson and co. edged Jennifer Jones and her team 8-7 in the final. The tournament ran from January 29 to February 2 and is the 68th edition of the annual tournament.
🏆MANITOBA WINS 🏆
Team Einarson 8 - 7 Team Homan
WHAT A FINISH 🤯 https://t.co/4oQ26SIvsT
— CBC Olympics (@CBCOlympics) February 24, 2020
This is Einarson's second win with her first coming in 2016. Jones, a newly inducted Hall of Famer and the most prolific Manitoban curler has won the tournament a record eight times.
On the men's side, Jason Gunnlaugson and the Morris Curling Club from Winnipeg are the most recent (2020) winner of the Viterra Championship, his first win. He defeated three-time champion Mike McEwen 7-4 in the final. This comes at a high note for Gunnlaugson and his team after they finished in the semifinals the previous year.
Although Manitoba is tied for first with 56 podium finishes, the province has been in a bit of a slump lately. Manitoba hasn't finished in the top-three since 2017 and has only made the podium once in the last six tournaments. They last won the tournament in 2011.
The all-time great, Jeff Stoughton has left a gaping hole that the men have yet to fill.
History of the Manitoba provincial curling
Both Manitoba provincial curling tournaments are run by Curl Manitoba, the province's official curling association. Their stated mission is "to promote, develop and grow the sport of curling in Manitoba, Canada and the world by providing leadership, services and programs for the curling community from grassroots to elite."
As of 2020, Curl Manitoba is responsible for 11 of the province's championships from both the Viterra Championship (men's) and Manitoba Scotties Tournament of Hearts (women's)to their juniors, seniors, mixed, and youth (under 16) tournament.
The Manitoba Scotties Tournament of Hearts was originally known as the Eaton's Championship in 1952. In 1961, this changed to the Silver D Championship then the Rose Bowl in 1968. In 1973, it began to be recognized as Manitoba's official tournament in the name of the Manitoba Lassie.
It wasn't until 1982 when it adapted a name close to what it is now as the Manitoba Scott Tournament of Hearts. It has kept its name now since 2007.
Like its female counterpart, the Viterra Championship also has an extensive history with different names. It first began at the MCA Bonspiel in 1925 with the Macdonald Brier Trophy to determine the Manitoba Championship.
This lasted until 1936 and by 1937, the tournament became known as the British Consols. Starting in 1980, the tournament started to be named after its many different sponsors: the Labatt Tankard in 1980 and the Safeway Select in 1995 and the Safeway Championship in 2008.
Viterra has since sponsored the tournament since 2016.
The future of Manitoba provincial curling
It's safe to assume that with its history of success, curling will continue to be a focal point among Manitoban sports. With many of the national champions and top Canadian curlers including Jones, Kaitlyn Lawes, and Jill Officer, coming from Manitoba, paying attention to Manitoban curling is a must.
The next Manitoba Scotties Tournament of Hearts and Viterra Championships are still booked for the next year. Follow these events to get a glimpse of Canada's potential representatives at the world stage.