Glen Jackson

In 2018, the road to the Brier goes via the beach – and the 2018 belairdirect BC Men’s Curling Championship, presented by Berwick Retirement Homes, is about to start.

A total of 12 men’s teams have qualified for the provincial championship, taking place at Parksville Curling Club, located on one of the most scenic stretches of beach in BC, from Jan. 31-Feb. 4. The winner of the Parksville event will go on to compete at the 2018 Tim Hortons Brier in Regina from Mar. 3-11.

The defending champions, Team Cotter, will be among the teams at the event, with three of the four curlers who won last year. The team will be made up of Jim Cotter (Vernon), Catlin Schneider (Saskatchewan), Tyrel Griffith and Rick Sawatsky (both from Kelowna).

Also taking part will be Team Joanisse, from the Golden Ears Winter Club in Maple Ridge, who were silver medallists last year. The team is made up of former BC men’s champion Dean Joanisse, from Abbotsford, Victoria-based Paul Cseke, Jay Wakefield (Vancouver) and John Cullen (Vancouver). Sean Geall, also a former BC men’s champion from Abbotsford, will be skipping a Kelowna team featuring Jeff Richard, Andrew Nerpin and David Harper. Team Pierce, from Royal City, features world champion, national and three-time BC men’s champion Brent Pierce, along with Steve Kopf, Rhys Gamache, Andrew Bilesky and Jamie McTavish.

The event will also feature Team Montgomery, Team Craig and Team Jackson from Victoria, as well as Team Baier, from Kelowna/Penticton/Victoria, and Team Eden from Penticton. The Vernon team of Mark Longworth will also be there along with Cranbrook’s Team Medford and Maple Ridge’s Team Dezura.