REGINA -- Troy Westwood had heard more stories about the Labour Day Classic from former punter Bob Cameron than he cares to remember.
Yet, some memories of these games between the Blue Bombers and their prairie-rival Saskatchewan Roughriders still stick out.
"A number of years ago, we wrote, 'Saskatchewan Sucks' on a white board and placed it behind our bench," the Winnipeg placekicker recalled on the eve of tonight's Classic. "There was a lady who was beyond drunk behind us who was crying and screaming at security, telling them to take the white board down. That was pretty funny. We won that Labour Day game and there were five or six of us laughing pretty hard at that whole thing."
Bomber safety Wes Lysack has vivid memories of attending the Classic while growing up in Regina.
"I remember being a kid, maybe six years old, and being in the washroom with my dad and all of a sudden, seeing two guys fighting," he said. "Then, it turned into seven guys from Regina beating up one Winnipegger. My dad just told me to look straight ahead, he put his arm around me and walked out. It was pretty funny."
The Bombers enter another dimension of Saskatchewan time and space when they arrive here.
"The fervour of the crowd and just the way football fans on the Prairies embrace this contest and this rivalry is amazing," said Bomber guard Matt Sheridan. "It's almost magical to come in here. It speaks volumes that we can't even stay in the town where we're playing. We have to resort to staying outside the city just to escape the craziness and debauchery of this weekend."
The Bombers stayed in Moose Jaw last night.
"The football games are always really intense, but when we were staying at the hotel in Regina it just got crazy the night before the game," recalled veteran fullback Wade Miller. "You've got people running up and down the hallways at three in the morning, you're trying to sleep, you've got to play a game the next day.
"It was like a big frat house in those hotels and it's great to see that it's such a rich tradition of the game. I mean, when we took the buses to Regina, you'd see how the Winnipeg fans are driving up, they've got their Bomber flags hanging out the window. Where it says, 'Welcome to Saskatchewan,'' they'd stop and cover it up with a Bomber flag. That's some pretty cool stuff."
Current Bomber punter Jon Ryan, who hails from Regina, could not recall any special Classic moments.
"I just remember the 'Riders losing a lot," he said.