The world's best curlers are heading to Las Vegas.
In a joint announcement by the Canadian Curling Association (CCA), U.S. Curling Association (USCA) and World Curling Federation (WCF), the 2014 World Financial Group Continental Cup will be staged at the 5,000-seat Orleans Arena in Las Vegas.
It marks the first time the event will be held in the United States and the first time outside of Canada. It also will be the first time that Las Vegas has hosted a curling event of this magnitude.
The WFG Continental Cup is a unique, Ryder Cup-like competition pitting three women's teams and three men's rinks from North America (two from USA, four from Canada) against six teams representing The World, in a variety of curling disciplines over a four-day period - Team Games, Mixed Doubles, Singles, Skins and Mixed Skins, with each segment worth a specified number of points. Each side will also have a captain and a coach.
Presently, North America and The World are deadlocked at four wins apiece since the inaugural Cup in 2002 in Regina, Saskatchewan.
"Las Vegas is one of the iconic destinations in the world," said World Curling Federation President Kate Caithness. "The World Curling Federation and its partners, the World Financial Group, the Canadian Curling Association and the U.S. Curling Association, are thrilled to be able to showcase the sport of curling and its top international players in such a high profile location just ahead of the 2014 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games.
"Place your bets as to who will win this tightly-fought competition which will celebrate its 10th anniversary in Las Vegas. One thing is for sure, for all involved, the biggest winner at this event will be our sport and the exposure for its finest athletes."
"We felt that this would be a great profile for the sport with some of the world's greatest curling athletes coming to Vegas only weeks before the 2014 Olympic Winter Games," said Greg Stremlaw, Chief Executive Officer of the Canadian Curling Association
"The stars have finally aligned. The many years of effort by countless people are finally paying off, and I'd say the odds are that this event will be a winner in Las Vegas," said Rick Patzke, Chief Operating Officer of the United States Curling Association.
TSN, Canada's leading sports network, along with French language sports network RDS, will televise all of the action from Las Vegas. Outside of Canada television details have yet to be finalized.
Event tickets are expected to go on sale in early 2013.