Foursome from Nanaimo Curling Club win Travelers Championship

By Dan Marshall
November 28, 2017 - 11:33am

Left to right: Keith Clarke, Craig Burton, Steve Waatainen, and Bart Sawyer became the first BC team to win the Travelers Curling Club Championship in the nine year history of the eventCurling Canada

NANAIMO — It wasn't just another Monday league night at the Nanaimo Curling Club.
For Bart Sawyer it was back to the ice for the first time since winning the Travelers Curling Club Championship in Kingston Ontario over the weekend.
Sawyer, along with third Steve Waatainen, second Craig Burton and lead Keith Clarke captured BC's first ever men's gold medal in the nine year history of the event.
The Nanaimo team beat Manitoba 7-3 in the final, and they lost only one game all week.
Sawyer was named the MVP of the tournament.
"It's an experience like no other," said Sawyer. "It is the club curlers Brier. If you've got a chance to go after it as club curler - go for it. It's the experience of a lifetime."
To be eligible for the Travelers Championship each team was allowed only one player who had played in a provincial or national Juniors’, Men’s, or Seniors’ championship in any of the past four curling seasons.
Sawyer, 43, says most of the team members have known each other for 25 years.
"We are friends off the ice. If we're not curling we do get to go out and golf quite a bit in the summer time," said Sawyer.
The Nanaimo team actually qualified for the Travelers Championship back in April, at the end of last season.
With the current curling season just beginning Sawyer says they only got about 10-12 games in prior to the championship.
Getting a chance to represent the province was a source of pride for the entire team.
"I don't think you can truly say in words how special that is to actually put that (Team BC jacket) on your back. I think that's pretty much going to be the highlight for all of us."
Sawyer says it was fun returning to league play in Nanaimo on Monday, but he doesn't know what the future will hold for his team.
"We haven't talked about. I think we need to let this sink in for now."
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Nomination period open for Nanaimo Sport Achievement Awards