SPORTS

Sportsnet expands Grand Slam of Curling to more events and more money

01/23/2015 04:29 EST | Updated 03/25/2015 05:59 EDT
TORONTO - More events and more money are in store for the Grand Slam of Curling.

The property owned, operated and televised by Sportsnet will expand to seven bonspiels and prize money of $1.5 million next season. That will be followed by eight events for $2.5 million in 2016-'17.

This year's Grand Slam of Curling consists of five events worth $1 million and offered an additional $1-million bonus to the men's team that swept all five.

That bonus won't be paid, however, as Brad Gushue of St. John's, N.L., won two out of the first three with Winnipeg's Mike McEwen claiming the other.

The Grand Slam currently consists of the Masters, National, Canadian Open, Elite 10 and concludes with the Players' Championship. Women aren't included in the either the National or the Elite 10, but do compete in the other three tournaments.

The Elite 10 is the fourth of five events and will be held March 19-22 in Fort MacMurray, Alta. This year's Players' Championship is April 7-12 in Toronto.

A Grand Slam of Curling Tour Challenge opening the season and a Champions Cup to close it will be added to the 2016-17 lineup.

The events also count towards a team's ranking on the Canadian Curling Association's Canadian Team Ranking System, which factors into qualification for the Olympic curling trials.

"The addition of more Grand Slam of Curling events is amazing for us curlers, as the Slams contain the best teams, most prize money, best ice surfaces and most CTRS points," Olympic champion skip Brad Jacobs said in a statement released by Sportsnet. "It's a win for everybody involved.

"Not to mention, it gives the fans more curling to watch in the arenas and at home."

Note to readers: This is a corrected story. A previous version had an incorrect surname in the penultimate paragraph.

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