CHEK Upside: BC Curling Championship returns to CHEK


After a year off due to COVID, the B.C. Curling Championship is back.

The tournament, this year held in Kamloops, is being played without fans due to the Omicron variant, a last-minute change that had organizers scrambling.

“With the new COVID protocols we just realized we’ve got to do this without a crowd and really bring curling back to its elements,” says Curl B.C.’s Doug Sarti.

“We’ve got the players, we’ve got the ice, we’ve got the stones and that’s all you really need.”

It is a change that teams will have to adjust to as well.

“For the teams who are experienced and who have played in front of large crowds…I think they would feel it’s really not as good for them,” says Canadian Curling Hall of Famer Julie Skinner.

“Some of the more inexperienced teams who haven’t been used to playing in front of large crowds, it might actually work in their favour because they don’t feel that pressure.”

While no fans are allowed they still can watch the tournament with CHEK bringing live coverage of the event for the second time, broadcasting the semi-finals and finals.

“Curl BC’s done a fantastic job of really upping their streaming game over about the last year and a half,” says Victoria Curling Club general manager Paul Dixon.

“Obviously with COVID it makes a huge difference, so being able to follow games both live scoring and online as well as streaming is great.”

The Victoria Curling Club is well represented this year, with two men’s teams in the competition as well as several other curlers scattered throughout teams in the men’s and women’s divisions.

“It’s good for our club, it helps to profile our club with the number of representations that we do have over there,” says Dixon.

The winners in each division will go on to compete in the Tim Horton’s Brier and the Scotties Tournament of Hearts, the pinnacles of Canadian curling.

“The Brier and the Scotties on the ladies side are arguably the two biggest events on the calendar,” says Dixon.

“I mean you can talk about the Olympics, but for most Canadian kids growing up curling, they want to win a Brier.”

CHEK’s coverage kicks off Saturday at 2 pm with the women’s semi-finals, followed by the men’s semi-finals at 7p.m.

Sunday’s coverage starts at 9 a.m. for the Women’s final and 2 p.m. for the men’s final.



Cole SorensonCole Sorenson

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