Rob Armitage and his Red Deer foursome took the first step towards defending their Canadian senior men’s curling title during the weekend at Michener Hill.
Armitage and his supporting cast of third Keith Glover, second Randy Ponich and lead Wilf Edgar, won three consecutive games in the District A playdowns, advancing to the Southern Alberta Curling Association finals Jan. 25-27 in Calgary. The provincial championship is set for the Edmonton Granite Curling Club Feb. 13-17.
Armitage opened with a 10-0 win over the Moss foursome of Calgary Glencoe, downed Lowell Peterman of Red Deer 10-2 and then rolled over Harvey Kelts of Red Deer 11-1 in the A-event final.
Paul Gowsell’s Calgary crew also earned a trip to the SACA playdowns by defeating the Yano foursome of the Calgary Acadia Recreation Centre 7-6 in the B-event final.
Peterman and Yano then qualified out of the C event, with Peterman downing Kelts 7-6 in an all-Red Deer affair and Yano beating Blaine Zubot of the Calgary Winter Club 8-4 in the other C qualifier.
The Armitage foursome captured the 2012 Canadian championship and will compete in the 2013 worlds April 13-20 in Fredericton, N.B.