Mattamy prepares to welcome top curlers
Davida Ander
Ryersonian Staff
Uploaded on 4/10/2013 10:33:12 AM

Spring may have arrived, but the ice is here to stay … at the Mattamy Athletic Centre (MAC), that is. This year, Ryerson is hosting the Grand Slam of Curling for the first time at the former Maple Leafs Gardens. 

The Players’ Championship, the fourth and final event in the Grand Slam of Curling series, will bring the top 30 men’s and women’s teams in the world together for a series of bonspiels from April 16 – 21.

The Grand Slam of Curling series is part of the annual World Curling Tour, and consists of four events held at different arenas across Canada. Teams qualify for the Players’ Championship based on their Order of Merit points, a point system managed by the World Curling Tour. The winning men’s and women’s teams at the Players’ Championship will each receive a purse of $100,000.  

According to Kelly Austin, the director of marketing at the MAC, the facitlity is a desirable location for the Grand Slam event because of its prime location in downtown Toronto, and seating capacity of 2,500.

She says talks began two years ago between Keith Baulk, the general manager of the MAC, and iSport Media and Management, the former owners of the Grand Slam of Curling. When Sportsnet purchased the Grand Slam in August, 2012, talks continued.

“They were interested in the venue, we were interested in having them, so we just negotiated the deal and that’s how that came to be,” Austin said.

Many preparations still need to be done before the six-day event kicks off. Staff at the MAC will prepare the ice to proper specifications in terms of thickness, ice temperature and surface.

Then, the ice crew will finish preparing the ice (unlike skating ice which is smooth, curling ice is pebbled), and divide the rink into a five-sheet layout, so five curling matches can be held simultaneously.

According to Austin, ticket sales are going well, but because it’s the first time the MAC is hosting a world-class curling event, it’s hard to say how well attended it will be. 

 “This is going to be a really great learning experience here at the venue,” she said.

More from Sports
Outside the box

Ryerson hosts the second annual Outside the Box event featuring fitness guru Peter Twist 

Published on 4/10/2013 1:11:31 PM
Graduating Rams reflect on their Ryerson legacy

Graduating Rams reflect on their legacy here at Ryerson. 

Published on 4/10/2013 11:01:04 AM
Weekly Ryerson class review roundup

Rebecca Williams breaks down the best workout classes for all types of gym-goers. 

Published on 4/10/2013 10:42:42 AM
Mattamy prepares to welcome top curlers

The Mattamy Athletic Centre prepares for the Players' Grand Slam curling tournament. 

Published on 4/10/2013 10:33:12 AM
Ryerson curling: The forgotten past

While Ryerson no longer has a curling team, the sport has a rich history at the univeristy. 

Published on 4/10/2013 10:20:30 AM
Comments (0)
No Comments!
Leave a Comment