Olympic curling schedule released
Canadian teams to be determined Dec. 7-8
The 2014 Sochi Olympic curling schedule was released Monday, laying out the round-robin path the Canadian men and women will need to navigate successfully for a spot on the podium.
The Olympic curling tournament starts Feb. 10 at the Ice Cube Curling Centre, a 3,000-seat facility. The round robin ends on Feb. 17, with tiebreaker contests the next day, if necessary.
The semifinals for both men and women take place on Feb. 19. The women's bronze- and gold-medal games are on Feb. 20, with the men's podium to be determined with two contests on Feb. 21.
Men's curling schedule
The Canadian men will not ease into the Olympic tournament, with two games on the opening day. After taking on a qualifier yet to be determined, Canada faces Switzerland, which finished seventh at the most recent world championships in Victoria.
Canada will face Sweden on Draw 3, on Feb. 11. That likely means Niklas Edin, who won gold at the worlds over Brad Jacobs of Sault Ste. Marie, Ont.
Canada will also play twice on the final day on Feb. 16, with the only set opponent so far being China in the evening session at the Ice Cube.
Edmonton skip Kevin Martin will try to become the first man to win consecutive Olympic gold medals. To do that he'll first need to emerge victorious at the Canadian Olympic trials Dec. 1-8 in Winnipeg, a tournament as deep and competitive as the Winter Games. Also booked into the Winnipeg trials are local product Jeff Stoughton and Glenn Howard of Penetanguishene, Ont., who've both won multiple Canadian championships.
Jacobs and 2006 Olympic champ Brad Gushue of Mount Pearl, N.L., are among the men who'll try to book their ticket for the Winnipeg tournament through the pre-trials event Nov. 5-10 in Kitchener, Ont.
Women's curling schedule
The Canadian women's representative will face a strong test on Feb. 11 against traditional power Sweden. Canada will match up on Feb. 12 against this year's world champion, Eve Muirhead of Scotland, whose rink last week were named the first official members of Great Britain's Olympic team for Sochi.
Canada will have double duty on Feb. 13, facing Denmark and Switzerland. The Canadians will have another two-game day on Feb. 15, against a yet-to-be-determined country in the morning, with an evening matchup against Russia.
Calgary's Cheryl Bernard won silver at the 2010 Olympics and will compete in November in Kitchener for the right to be at the so-called Roar of the Rings in Winnipeg. Among the favourites already assured of a spot in the December trials are Winnipeg native Jennifer Jones, Saskatoon's Stefanie Lawton, and Rachel Homan of Ottawa, this year's Tournament of Hearts champ.
Canada's curling teams will be announced Dec. 9.