The opening day of the Tim Hortons Curling Trials has finally arrived and that means one's time to make our predictions for the biggest event in Canadian curling. 

The nine-team men's and women's fields are stacked with almost every rink in Saskatoon having a shot at representing Canada at the Winter Olympics in Beijing come February.

So without further ado, TSN senior reporter Bob Weeks, curling producer Ryan Horne and the Curling Mystic, otherwise known as Rocky Fourfoot, make their predictions for the Canadian Curling Trials. 

Do you agree with their selections? 

Bob Weeks, Senior Reporter

Men’s Field

Winner: Brad Gushue

I know, it's easy to bet the favourite but this team just seems so prepared which might be enough of an edge. 

Runner-Up: Brad Jacobs

If these guys get off to a fast start, they could be like trying to stop an avalanche. 

Dark Horse: John Epping

They have experience and can play all the shots. They just need a consistent week. 

Women’s Field

Winner: Kerri Einarson

Just so solid throughout the lineup, it's hard to think they won't be there at the end. 

Runner-Up: Rachel Homan

They've been here before and that could mean a lot as the intensity rises. 

Dark Horse: Krista McCarville

These part-timers have more tenacity than any team in the field and you just can't help but cheer for them. 


Ryan Horne, Curling Producer

Men’s Field

Winner: Brendan Bottcher

Team Bottcher has played every Brier final in the past quadrennial, beating many of the teams they’ll face in Saskatoon at the Trials. Sure, they’re 1-3 in those national finals, but are riding high after coming off their only win last season inside the Calgary bubble. Bottcher and company have proven they can win the big game and will do it again on the biggest stage in Canadian curling.

Runner-Up: Brad Gushue

Team Gushue has won 16 of 17 games this season, highlighted by a Grand Slam win over Scotland’s Bruce Mouat earlier this month. The rink from the Rock has won three Brier Tankards since 2017, beating Team Bottcher twice in the final. Bottcher and Gushue are the only skips to bring back the same lineup from the 2017 Trials, and that will help both sides get to the championship game. This time Bottcher will come out on top.

Dark Horse: Matt Dunstone

Matt Dunstone, a back-to-back Brier bronze medallist, will play with a new third this week as Braeden Moskowy can’t compete at the Trials due to personal reasons. Dunstone added a familiar name in Colton Lott, a strong third who he won two Canadian junior titles with in 2013 and 2016. The new-look Team Dunstone will find their groove in front of hometown fans and might sneak into the three-team playoff.

Women’s Field

Winner: Rachel Homan

The rink from the Ottawa Curling Club is due for another big win on the national stage. Team Homan has lost three consecutive Tournament of Hearts Finals after missing the podium at the 2018 Winter Olympics in South Korea. Team Homan is just too talented to keep coming up short and will break through in Saskatoon, earning the right to represent Canada at consecutive Olympics.

Runner-Up: Krista McCarville

The Thunder Bay crew have been perennial contenders at the Scotties, earning playoff spots in their last four appearances. However, Team Homan has always given them trouble in the past. Team McCarville will put together a great week in Saskatoon but will come up just short in a thrilling final against Team Homan.

Dark Horse: Casey Scheidegger

The rink out of the Lethbridge Curling Club has been right there at a handful of major events in the past four years, just missing the playoffs at the Scotties in 2017 and 2018. If Team Scheidegger can stay consistently sharp all week, they’ll make some noise at the Trials.


Rocky Fourfoot, Curling Mystic

Men's Field

Winner: Brad Gushue
Runner-Up: Brad Jacobs
Dark Horse: Matt Dunstone

This one is tough with so many veteran teams and three skips who have already had the Olympic experience still at the top of their games. Plus, you can’t forget the current Brier champions in Team Brendan Bottcher.

It feels like veteran teams like Kevin Koe, Brad Jacobs and Brad Gushue have been building for this event for a long time and Team Bottcher has been a perennial Brier finalist for four straight years so it’s hard to narrow down this field.

Back at last year's Brier, Jacobs said that he felt time was starting to become a factor in his career, and I think they have a big week in Saskatoon, but something tells me that Team Gushue will end their run in the Battle of the Brads in a classic Trials final.

My dark horse pick is Team Matt Dunstone despite a last-second lineup change from Braeden Moskowy to Colton Lott. Dunstone has a flair for the big shot, and I could see the hometown crowd in Saskatoon firing up the only Saskatchewan team in the field. It might not be a finals appearance, but this team won't back down and I would not be surprised to see them battling hard for a playoff appearance.

Women’s Field

Winner: Kerri Einarson
Runner-Up: Tracy Fleury
Dark Horse: Laura Walker

I could call for a third installment of the recent Rachel Homan-Kerri Einarson Scotties finals trilogy, but I’m going to go with history here and say one of them doesn't make the final.

The last three women's trials finals have had a surprise team in the final (Chelsea Carey 2017, Sherry Middaugh in 2013 and Cheryl Bernard 2009). So, I will go with a final of Einarson and Tracy Fleury.

Kerri versus her former team has a nice touch of drama for a Trials final. Team Einarson has been a strong starter over the past couple of seasons and I think that plus their big-game experience gives them the edge and they pull away late for the victory and a spot in the Olympics.

As for a dark horse, I will go with Team Laura Walker. They had a strong Scotties run in the bubble and maybe they can parlay that into a little more here in Saskatoon.