(CurlManitoba Release) Alex Forrest and his family team from Assiniboine Memorial have won the 2021 Chicken Chef Manitoba Mixed Championship. Forrest had his brother Tyler at second, wife D’Arcy at lead, and sister-in-law Brandi at third as they won the title Monday afternoon with a 9-3 win over former four-time champion Sean Grassie and his Deer Lodge team.
After a blanked first end, Grassie scored two and stole one to lead 3-0 but never scored again. Forrest and his team filled the rings with rocks, scoring a four, two and three over the next three ends and Grassie conceded with no chance of scoring a comeback end midway through the seventh.
Grassie (Sarah-Jane Sass, Daryl Evans, Calleen Friesen) earned the bye to the final by placing first, thanks to 7-6 round-robin win over Forrest. Team Forrest earned the re-match with a 7-6 win over Corey Chambers in the Monday morning semi-final.
For Alex Forrest, it is a third Manitoba ‘buffalo’. He skipped the Manitoba junior champion team in 2010 and was at third for Jason Gunnlaugson in winning the Manitoba men’s title in 2020. Tyler Forrest, his brother, won the Manitoba Juniors at second for Reid Carruthers, in 2003.
Grassie was attempting to win a fifth Manitoba championship. To go with a Junior title, a fourth Mixed Championship would allow him to join three others with a record of four (by a skip): Ernie Boushy (1964-65-66-67), Jeff Stoughton (1988-89-91-94), and Terry McNamee (2004-05-07-11). Grassie had previously won in (1999, 2009-12-14).
The champions will have an opportunity to represent Manitoba at the 2021 Canadian Mixed, November 7-14, in Canmore, AB. Manitoba teams have won the Canadian Mixed title on seven occasions.
Boushy (1964 & 1966) and Stoughton (1988 & 1991) won twice. Hal Tanasichuk (1977), Jim Dunstone (1980) and Grassie (2009) were one-time Canadian champions.
The early October championship event was originally scheduled for last March but was postponed due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The early season playoff was scheduled as a part of the CurlManitoba effort to bring curlers and curling fans back into the clubs, as well as to identify a representative to attend the Canadian Mixed in Canmore.
The 2021-22 season Chicken Chef Mixed is tentatively scheduled for March 18-21, 2022 in Carman.
CurlManitoba will also be hosting a double set of championships this year for seniors and club champions.
The next Manitoba championships will be the Nature’s Bounty Men’s and Women’s Club Champions Championships in Brandon, October 28-31 and the Strathcona Trust Senior Men’s/CurlManitoba Senior Women’s November 5-10 at Pembina Curling Club.