The Manitoba Curling Tour was created by curlers Kerry Burtnyk and Mark Olson in the summer of 1991, to provide a means of co-ordination and support for the series of local bonspiels or cashspiels in the province.
A close relationship developed between the MCT and the forerunners of Curl Manitoba, the Manitoba and Manitoba Ladies Curling Associations.
The tour has included cashspiels held throughout the province, along with events in Northern Ontario and North Dakota. Qualification has required the payment of an affiliation fee, collection of team registration fees that are paid into the purse of the MCT Championships, use of an MCT approved draw, and a minimum purse of 100 per cent of the entry fees less affiliation and team registration fees.
Each season MCT Championships have been held in various locations. After five seasons as a men’s championship, a women’s division was added in 1996-97. Starting with the 2002-03 season, the Manitoba Curling Association has added a berth in the provincial Safeway Championship to the MCT men’s division. It now is awarded to the men’s champion or the highest finishing eligible team.
For the 2011-12 season, the Manitoba Curling Tour was awarded three additional Safeway Championship berths for the Men and a Scotties provincial berth for the Women. For two seasons, one of the Men’s berths was awarded annually to be competed for in an MCT Bonspiel. The other two Men’s berths and the Women’s berths were awarded to the top eligible teams on the MCT’s Rankings list after the conclusion of the MCT Championship.
A new MCT Ranking System was established for 2011-12, going away from the traditional practice of ranking the teams based on money winnings. The new ranking process was based on points allocated to teams according to a formula which recognized two levels of bonspiels – GOLD LEVEL ($15,000 & over total purse) and SILVER LEVEL (under $15,000 total prize purse).
NEW in 2014:
For 2013-14, the MCT Bonspiel Berth was re-allocated into the MCT Rankings, and an additional Manitoba Scotties berth was awarded to the Tour. In addition, with the unique situation of both the reigning Manitoba Safeway Champion (Stoughton) and the reigning Manitoba Scotties champion (Carey) forfeiting their champions berth to the provincials, those berths were also allocated to the MCT (for one year only). This means the MCT Men’s Tour will award five Safeway Berth invitations in 2014-15 (one for the champion or highest finishing eligible team and four to the highest ranked teams) and three Scotties Berth invitations (one for the champion or highest finishing eligible team and two to the highest ranked teams).
A new presenting sponsor was recruited in 2014, creating a number of significant opportunities. Most notably, the Men’s and Women’s finals of the Manitoba Curling Tour presented by Manitoba Liquor & Lotteries will be broadcast on Shaw TV on December 14.
The MCT Championship will be played at Assiniboine Memorial Curling Club, December 12-14.
As a result of a Player’s meeting in early 2014, a number of changes were implemented in the Manitoba Curling Tour’s Rankings system for the 2014-15 season.
The key points made in the meeting were that:
- It is desirable to encourage teams to play more Manitoba bonspiels
- It is desirable to encourage teams to become involved in the CTRS points chase
- It is desirable to encourage bonspiels to become involved in the CTRS points allocation process.
In order to try to accomplish these objectives, the following changes were made in the MCT Rankings Points Allocation system.
- MCT RANKINGS POINTS will be calculated based upon the team’s BEST FIVE Bonspiel results (changed from four).
- BONSPIEL RANKINGS CLASSIFICATIONS will be awarded on the basis of THREE different bonspiel values (changed from two) The three bonspiel classifications will be:
- Gold: Any bonspiel which is CTRS Points eligible, regardless of the # of teams OR $$ prize pool (changed from prize purse over $15,000)
- Silver: Any bonspiel which is NOT CTRS points eligible but which has at least 16 teams (changed from all other bonspiels)
- Bronze: Any bonspiel which has fewer than 16 teams (NEW).
- RANKINGS POINTS ALLOCATION: The rankings points allocated in 2014-15 will be:
- Gold: Champion-40, Finalist-34, Semifinalist-28, Quarterfinalist-22 (changed from 45, 37.5, 30×2, 22.5×4) 4 per win for non-qualifying teams (unchanged)
- Silver: 30, 25, 20,15 (unchanged) 3 per win for non-qualifying teams (changed from 2.5)
- Bronze: 20, 16, 12, 8 and 2 per win for non-qualifying teams (NEW)
- CURLMANITOBA EVENT VALUES: The Rankings Points allocated in 2014-15 will be based on the number of entries. Events which are 16 or more entries will be Silver while fewer than 16 entries makes the event a Bronze level event (changed from automatically being considered Silver- last year’s lowest value of event).
- CHAMPIONSHIP EVENT VALUE: Based on ensuring CTRS eligibility, the Championship will qualify as a Gold Event (changed from automatically being considered Gold despite prize purse value in last year’s system).
The points allocations is:
CHAMPION (1) POINTS: GOLD=40 SILVER=30 BRONZE = 20 FINALIST (2) POINTS: GOLD=34 SILVER=25 BRONZE = 16 SEMI-FINALIST (3-4) POINTS: GOLD=28 SILVER=20 BRONZE =12 QUALIFIER (5-8) POINTS: GOLD=22 SILVER=15 BRONZE = 8 POINTS PER WIN: GOLD=4 SILVER=2.5 BRONZE =2