Brier warmup for Canadian seniors

JOE PAVIA, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 9:06 AM ET

The Brier is a good place to practise.

Three Tim Hortons Brier competitors will soon be in Ottawa to fight for a second national title.

When the Ottawa Hunt Club hosts the World Financial Group Canadian Senior championship (March 20-28), Quebec's Pierre Charette and P.E.I.'s Rod MacDonald and Peter MacDonald will have just finished playing with the big boys in Halifax. Plenty of other senior competitors have Brier or Scotties experience.

The most celebrated is Thunder Bay's Al Hackner, who is representing Northern Ontario. His nine Brier appearances and two Brier and world championships augur well for him as he tries to capture his second over-50 crown. His first came in 2006.

The wheat farmer from Saskatchewan and former Brier skip, Brad Heidt, will be here after beating Eugene Hritzuk in their provincial title game.

New Brunswick's Heidi Hanlon has experienced a few Scotties and now has her sights set on making her mark at the Hunt.

The 2007 senior women's winner, Alberta's Diane Foster, returns. While Rod MacDonald is skipping at the current Brier, he'll be playing second in Ottawa, while his Halifax alternate, Peter MacDonald, skips the senior rink.

Team Quebec's fifth man at the Brier but really its coach, Pierre Charette, adds local flavour to the mid-March event. He brings his experienced Thurso squad with him, which should be a threat. While no relation, Buckingham's Agnes Charette has as much if not more experience than Pierre -- 20 provincial titles in all, including three Canadian seniors.

The draw is available at ottawahuntclub.org.

Event passes are $50, round-robin day passes go for $10 and playoff (March 27-28) are $15. Bleacher seating will be provided. A relaxed dress code is in effect. For more info, call 613-736-1355.

To Russia with love

Last year's men's senior winner, Team Bruce Delaney, will receive its sendoff Thursday at the Navy. The farewell begins at 6:30 p.m.. This Team Canada goes to Chelyabinsk, Russia to begin play in the worlds on April 16.

OCA results

The Trophy region winners were: 1A -- Jaimee Gardner and B -- Tracy Samaan. Colts teams advancing to provincials were: 1A -- Rick Hutchinson and B -- Shane Latimer.

Odds and ends

The Huntley bantam squad of Lauren Hutton, Andrea Sinclair, Cassandra Lewin, Jessica Armstrong and coach Tom Sinclair won all their games to earn gold medals at the recent Ontario Winter Games in Muskoka ... Ottawa's Rachel Homan had a six-ender on a quadruple runback double-angle takeout vs. China at the world juniors. You can see the replay at hoglinecurling.com/joesblog. The women's final will be webcast Sunday at 3 a.m. at worldcurling.org.

Curling this week

The Brier final is on TSN Sunday at 7 p.m. ... The City of Ottawa Men's Bonspiel begins Tuesday, with 206 rinks.

JOE@HOGLINECURLING.COM


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