TRURO – Six days of world-class competition came to a close on Sunday, with Team Epping and Team Hasselborg capturing the Pinty’s Grand Slam of Curling Canadian Beef Masters titles.
In men’s competition, Team Epping of Toronto collected its first Grand Slam title of the season following a 7-4 win over Calgary’s Team Koe. With the win, Team Epping takes home $30,000 of the $125,000 men’s purse and qualifies for the 2019 Humpty’s Champions Cup, the final Grand Slam event of the 2018-19 season in Saskatoon.
“These events are so hard to win, even making a final or the semifinals is hard,” said skip John Epping, in a press release. “It’s the best teams in the world. It’s just great to build on. It feels like it’s coming together for us, and while we still have lots of work to do, it’s nice to play well as a team in big games.”
In women’s action, Sweden’s Team Hasselborg captured its second consecutive Grand Slam title following a 8-7 victory over three-time Masters champion Team Homan of Ottawa. In addition to the title, the reigning Olympic gold medalists also collect $30,000 of the $125,000 women’s purse.
“It almost felt as good as winning the Olympics, because winning two Grand Slams is huge for us,” said third Sara McManus. “It was huge winning the last event, so this win is amazing. We did a great job bouncing back from the tiebreakers and just going straight to the final. That was so much fun.”
From Colchester County, cousins Karlee and Lindsey Burgess competed with Team Kaitlyn Jones. Recently winning the world junior title, Team K. Jones was give the sponsors exemption, giving them the chance to play in the Masters. They made it to the quarterfinals with a 3-1 record in round robin play, however lost to Team Carey of Alberta in the quarterfinals, 7-3.
The next event of the 2018-19 Pinty’s Grand Slam of Curling season is the Tour Challenge, which kicks off on Nov. 6 at the Tournament Centre in Thunder Bay, ON. The third of seven events on the Grand Slam calendar, the Tour Challenge will feature 30 elite men’s and women’s teams divided into Tier 1 and Tier 2 competitions.