Manitobans can take pride in two things this year: That our team, the Winnipeg Blue Bombers won the Grey Cup, and that two Manitoba curling teams will be in Russia to represent Team Canada in the World Junior Curling Championships.
Team Zacharias hail from the Altona Curling Club, and is made up of Skip Mackenzie Zacharias, Third Karlee Burgess, Second Emily Zacharias and Lead Lauren Lenentine. A few of them already have international experience. Burgess has been to World Juniors four times previously – twice as a competitor and twice as an alternate. Lenentine went to World’s as the alternate in 2018.
Team Gauthier is from the Assinaboine Curling Club and is made up of Skip Jacques Gauthier, Third Jordan Peters, Second Brayden Payette and Lead Zack Bilawka. Gauthier was an alternate at the World’s in Scotland in 2018.
Starting this Saturday, both teams will be searching for Canada’s third straight world title. The women will be up against nine teams – Denmark, Hungary, Japan, Korea, Latvia, Norway, Russia, Sweden and Switzerland.
The men will come up against Germany, Italy, New Zealand, Norway, Russia, Scotland, Sweden, Switzerland and the United States. The winners will be decided on Feb. 22.
Team Zacharias posed with the legendary Grey Cup and chatted with their local fans at a Meet & Greet event at the MEC in Altona on Feb. 8. Fans were able to get an autograph, sign the Canadian flag that the girls will be taking with them, and show their support.
Both teams were also given a formal send-off at the Assiniboine Memorial Curling Club on Sunday, and flew out of Winnipeg on Monday, headed for Krasnoyarsk, Russia to make their province proud.