BEIJING -- Four-time world champion and six-time national champion Randy Ferbey was inducted into the World Curling Hall of Fame on Tuesday.
Joining him in this year's class were Switzerland's Patrick Huerlimann and Norway's Eigil Ramsfjell. The announcement was made at the world men's curling championship at Capital Indoor Stadium in China.
"We are delighted to announce that Randy Ferbey, Patrick Huerlimann and Eigil Ramsfjell are being inducted into the World Curling Hall of Fame," said World Curling Federation president Kate Caithness. "All of these athletes have been ambassadors of our game, both on and off the ice.
"Their dedication to our sport has inspired generations of curlers the world over and this honour recognizes their achievements."
Ferbey won world titles in 1989, 2002, 2003, 2005 and was a silver medallist in 1988. He won national titles in each of those years and in 2001.
Ferbey, 54, will be honoured at next year's world championship in Halifax.
"This came out of nowhere for me -- I'm blown away to be honest," said Ferbey. "I'm really appreciative to the Canadian Curling Association for their support, as well as to the World Curling Federation. I never played the game to earn accolades like this.
"I always considered it a team game and I really want to share this with all the great teammates I had over the years. I could not have done it without them."
Huerlimann won Olympic gold at the 1998 Nagano Games. He won world silver in 1989 and bronze in 1996 and 1999.
He also guided Switzerland to a silver medal at the 2003 world playdowns. Huerlimann was a WCF executive board member for seven years and served as vice-president from 2010 through 2012.
"This great news came out of the blue," he said. "I am delighted to be inducted into the Hall of Fame and very thankful to the World Curling Federation. For the past 40 years, curling has been a major part of my life on and off the ice.
"Curling means so much to me and I am truly honoured with this nomination and to be part of the great ones of our much loved game."
Ramsfjell, from Norway, played in 15 world championships and won gold in 1979, 1984 and 1988. He took silver in 1978 and 1980 and won bronze on four occasions (1983, 1987, 1989 and 1991).
Ramsfjell won the gold medal when curling was a demonstration sport at the 1988 Calgary Olympics and earned bronze at the Nagano Games 10 years later.
"My curling career has given me many highlights and I have been grateful for every one of those experiences," he said. "However, this recognition is truly outstanding. I am deeply honoured to be joining some of the greats of previous generations and must thank the Norwegian Curling Association for nominating me and the World Curling Federation for inducting me into the Hall of Fame."
Ferbey won his first two national titles as a third for Pat Ryan's team. His next four Brier wins came as skip of the "Ferbey Four" rink, which included Dave Nedohin, Scott Pfeifer and Marcel Rocque.
Ferbey, who threw third rocks for that team, shares the record for most Brier wins as a skip (four) with Ernie Richardson and Kevin Martin.
"Randy's achievements on the ice over the years speak for themselves," said CCA chief executive officer Greg Stremlaw. "Equally important, Randy was always accessible to our great curling fans, and made a lot of friends for the sport with his outgoing nature.
"The Canadian Curling Association is thrilled to see him recognized with induction into the World Curling Hall of Fame."
Last year, Canada's Ron Northcott and Don Duguid were the inductees.
Prior to 2012, the WCF awarded the World Curling Freytag Award. It was named after the late Elmer Freytag of the U.S. Curling Association, who was a founding member of the International Curling Federation (now the WCF).
Previous Freytag honourees from Canada include Ray Kingsmith (2011), Sandra Schmirler (2009), Shirley Morash (2001), Richardson (2000), Colin Campbell (1990), Bob Picken (1987), Don McLeod (1985), Mabel Deware (1983), Doug Maxwell (1981) and Ken Watson (1978).