Continental Cup (curling)
The Continental Cup is a curling tournament held annually between teams from North America (sometimes just Canada) against teams from the rest of the World (sometimes just Europe). Each side is represented by six teams (three women's teams and three men's teams), which compete using a unique points system. The tournament is modeled after golf's Ryder Cup.
|2020 host city||London, Ontario|
|2020 arena||Western Fair Sports Centre|
|2020 champion||Team Europe|
|2020 Continental Cup|
Each side is represented by six teams. Curling Canada determines Team Canada's participants, based on previous Canada Cup, national championship, and CTRS standings. Previous editions have used a Team North America, with four Canadian and two American teams. Team Europe's representatives are determined by the World Curling Federation. Some previous editions have used a Team World with representation from the Pacific-Asia region.
There are four main competitions for the event, and for either side to claim the Continental Cup, a minimum majority of the points must be attained from these competitions. Prior to 2013, the minimum majority of the points was 201 points, but in the new points system implemented in 2013, the minimum majority of the points is 30½ points.
The traditional team component of the Continental Cup consists of six eight-end games, with each team playing a single traditional game. One point is awarded to the winner, with a half point if the game is tied after eight ends.
The mixed doubles component consists of twelve games, with each player competing in one mixed doubles game. One point is awarded to the winner, with a half point if the game is tied after eight ends.
Prior to 2007, each team consisted of two sweepers and two throwers, where one man and one woman was to play each position. By tradition, each men's rink was paired with a women's rink to make two teams for this event, with each mixed team being given as the names of the two throwers. All 24 players on each side were required to play in either a sweeping or throwing role in this format. Starting in 2007, however, sweepers were eliminated to create a true "doubles" game, and any sweeping is to be done by either the thrower or the skip. In the past, six points would have been given for a win, and three points would have been given for a tie.
The rules from this event (with the 2007 revision) were later adopted as a separate curling discipline with the inauguration of the World Mixed Doubles Curling Championship in 2008, and became an Olympic discipline ten years later.
|Year||Mixed doubles winner||Points|
The team scramble competition will be added to the 2019 event. The men's and women's teams are mixed up into same-gender lineups. No team may consist of a front-end or back-end from the same team. There will be six games, each worth one point, with a half point if the game is tied after eight ends.
|Year||Team scramble winner||Points|
Mixed team scrambleEdit
The mixed team scramble competition will be added to the 2019 event. It will consist of three games with traditional mixed teams. One team from each side will be skipped by a female player. Two points are awarded to the winner, with a single point if the game is tied after eight ends.
|Year||Mixed team scramble winner||Points|
The final event, and the event worth the most points, is the skins portion. Up to 30 points can be claimed in this event, meaning that neither team can clinch the Continental Cup until the skins games are played. There are a total of five points, with half-point skins in the first six ends of the game and one-point skins in the final two ends. Prior to 2013, teams could claim 260 points in the skins games, and the points were distributed in an uneven manner through each of the eight ends, resulting in a different total point value for each skins game.
In order for a team to claim a skin, the team must either score at least two points with the hammer or force a steal without the hammer. In the skins competitions, blank ends will turn the hammer over to the opposing team. If after eight ends there remain points to be claimed, a draw to the button determines which team will get the points.
The points for the skins games were distributed as follows:
|Points per game||End|
|6 points (2020–present*)||½||½||½||½||1||1||1||1|
|5 points (2013–present*)||½||½||½||½||½||½||1||1|
|20 points (2007–2012)||1||1||2||2||2||2||4||6|
|30 points (2002–2006)||2||2||3||3||3||4||6||7|
|30 points (2007–2012)||1||1||3||3||3||4||6||9|
|40 points (2002–2006)||2||2||4||4||5||6||7||10|
|55 points (2007–2012)||4||4||5||6||6||8||10||12|
|60 points (2002–2006)||4||4||6||6||7||9||11||13|
* Since 2020, the first skins draw is worth 5 points per game, and the second draw is worth 6 points per game.
From 2002 to 2007, there were six skins games, three men's and three women's, with the games worth 30, 40, and 60 points. The games were typically referred to as the "A", "B", and "C" games. From 2007 to 2012, eight skins games were played. Three were worth 20 points, three were worth 30 points and the remaining two were worth 55 points. Three men's skins games and three women's skins games were played, with the remaining "A" and "B" game featuring mixed teams. The teams playing in the featured games, also known as the "C" games, were required to contribute two players, one male and one female, to both mixed skins games, while the teams playing in the "A" skins game must contribute two players, one male and one female, to the "B" mixed skins game, and vice versa.
The featured skins game was played on the last day of competition, while the others were played on the same day as the singles events. With the exception of the men's feature game in the 2003 cup, which was only played to seven ends with 13 points on the line in the eighth, all skins games are played to their conclusion, even if the Continental Cup has been clinched by one side partway through, or before all matches have been played (as was the case in 2007, when North America had clinched the Continental Cup before either of the feature skins game were played).
The singles competition is akin to a skills competition. There are six singles matches (three women's and three men's), with one point given to the winner of each match. In the past, four points would be given to the winner of each match, and eight bonus points would be awarded to the team with the higher aggregate score for the singles events. By convention, each of the matches pit teams against each other. Prior to 2007, one team member was to throw all six shots, while the non-throwers must sweep or skip for the thrower. Beginning in 2007, however, each member of the team must make at least one shot, and no member may make more than two shots. The singles event was discontinued in 2016.
Each singles match is determined based on a points system (with 0 for missing the shot entirely, 1 if the shot remains in play but outside the house, and higher points based on where the shooter eventually lands, up to a maximum of 5 points if the shooter reaches the button), and the team with the higher score wins the game. Three of the shots must be in-turns, while the other three must be out-turns, with the shots set up according to their chosen type of turn. The six shots are as follows:
- the runthrough — the shooter must hit their own center guard, which then must hit an opposing rock at the back of the button. The position of the hit guard determines the point value of the shot.
- the draw to the button - a simple draw to the button.
- the draw through a port - the shooter must draw their rock between two opposing rocks (a corner guard and a center guard on the opposite side of the center line). Points are only awarded if the thrown rock passes through the two opposing rocks without hitting either rock.
- the raise - the shooter must hit their own centre guard so that the guard is raised into the house. The position of the raised guard determines the point value of the shot.
- the hit-and-roll - the shooter must hit an opposing stone on a corner guard outside the house and then roll towards the center of the house. The hit stone must be completely removed from play in order to score points.
- the double takeout - the shooter must remove two opposing stones, one at the top of the four-foot and one at the back of the button. Both stones must be completely removed from play in order to score points. The position of the shooter determines the point value of the shot.
To determine the singles matchups, one team captain must choose one rink while the other captain chooses the rink opposing them. One captain will choose first for the first women's matchup and the second men's matchup, while the other captain chooses first for the first men's matchup and the second women's matchup. All women's games are completed before the men's games, and all shots of one type must be completed before the next shot is done. The team throwing first in one shot (which will be the same team in all three matches) will throw second in the next shot. The right to make the first shot in the runthrough alternates between the two teams every year.
|Year||Team winner||Points||Top men's team (points)||Top women's team (points)|
|2002||Europe||24–8||Kevin Martin (27)||Katarina Nyberg (24)|
|2003||Europe||20–12||Magnus Swartling (22)||Marianne Haslum (15)|
|2004||North America||28–4||Randy Ferbey (21)||Patti Lank (20)|
|2006||Europe||18–14|| Flemming Davanger (22)
Markku Uusipaavalniemi (22)
|Kelly Scott (22)|
|2007||North America||28–4||Team Glenn Howard (26)||Team Jennifer Jones (26)|
|2008||World||22–10||Team Wang Fengchun (20)||Team Wang Bingyu (18)|
|2011||North America||22–10||Team Kevin Martin (27)|| Team Jennifer Jones (16) |
Team Mirjam Ott (16)
|2012||World||24–8||Team Jeff Stoughton (25)||Team Wang Bingyu (21)|
|2013||North America||4-2||Team Glenn Howard (22)|| Team Allison Pottinger (18) |
Team Mirjam Ott (18)
|2014||World||5–1||Team Thomas Ulsrud (18)||Team Margaretha Sigfridsson (24)|
|2015||Canada||3½–2½||Team Thomas Ulsrud (23)|| Team Rachel Homan (20) |
Team Jennifer Jones (20)
List of Continental CupsEdit
- 1 The event was tied 30–30 after completion of the skins events, so to break the tie, each team selected one thrower to draw to the button, with North America's Brad Gushue coming closer to Team World's Thomas Ulsrud.
Similar events in other sportsEdit
- "Lineups confirmed for 2011 World Financial Group Continental Cup". Canadian Curling Association. 12 October 2010.
- "2012 World Financial Group Continental Cup Disciplines". Canadian Curling Association. 20 January 2011.
- "Continental Cup matchups now set". Canadian Curling Association. 9 January 2013. Retrieved 9 January 2013.
- "Lineups, new format set for 2019 WFG Continental Cup in Las Vegas". Curling Canada. September 17, 2018. Retrieved September 18, 2018.
- "World and Olympic champions headline 2008 Continental Cup". Canadian Curling Association. 9 July 2008. Archived from the original on 14 July 2008. Retrieved 15 July 2008.
- "North America claims World Financial Group Continental Cup". Canadian Curling Association. 16 January 2011.
- "Team World wraps up fourth Continental Cup title". Canadian Curling Association. 16 January 2012.
- Cameron, Allen (13 January 2013). "Team North America claims WFG Continental Cup". Canadian Curling Association. Retrieved 13 January 2013.
- "Team North America captures 2014 WFG Continental Cup". Canadian Curling Association. 20 January 2014. Retrieved 20 January 2014.