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Schneider looking to add to family curling glory at B.C. championships

Championships began Tuesday and run through Sunday
Play got underway on Tuesday in the B.C. Curling Championships at the Archie Browning Sports Centre in Esquimalt. DARREN STONE, TIMES COLONIST

Catlin Schneider, who skips the defending champion Victoria Curling Club team this week at the B.C. championships was to the manor born. Or to the rink born being more like it.

His dad, Jamie Schneider, played in the 1990 Brier national championship and was the 1983 Canadian junior champion.

Sister Lorraine Schneider played in the 2017 Scotties Tournament of Hearts Canadian women’s championship, and cousins Kim and Tammy Schneider won the 2011 Scotties and represented Canada in the world championship that year.

Catlin himself has played with Saskatchewan champion rinks in the Brier men’s national championship three times.

“I grew up curling in a curling family,” said Catlin Schneider.

A fourth time to the Brier would be especially sweet since the national event this year is in Schneider’s hometown of Regina. Whether he gets there will be decided this week with how his Victoria rink does during the B.C. championships, which began Tuesday and run through Sunday at the Archie Browning Sports Centre.

The defending provincial champion Victoria Club rink of third Sterling Middleton, second Jason Ginter and lead Alex Horvath was looking for a new skip this season following the departure of Jacques Gauthier after he became the first VCC skip since Dean Joanisse in 2007 and fifth overall to go to the Brier.

“I’ve known Jason [Ginter] through the years and I knew they were looking,” said Schneider. A match was made.

“We wanted to keep the three of us in the same positions because we’re used to what we do and what we each brings to the team,” Horvath said about the decision to recruit a new skip to fill the vacancy in the team while keeping the backing roster intact.

They have recruited an all-rounder in Schneider, who played five seasons in U Sports football as a receiver, kick returner and punter with the University of Regina Rams. He returned to curling in 2015 with a possible novel trip back to his hometown in the offing.

“It would be in B.C. colours but it would be unreal to play in Regina in the Brier,” said Schneider, who was named the all-star third of the 2017 Brier in St. John’s.

“We believe we have the best team here but it’s about going out and proving it and staying patient. It is never easy. Everyone is here for a reason. They are all good. Curling takes patience.”

The Schneider rink opened in the provincial tournament Tuesday night in the late draw in a game that was in progress at press time. Draws are at 9 a.m., 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. each day through Saturday at Archie Browning. The championship games are on Sunday with the women’s at 9 a.m. and men’s at 2 p.m. Tickets are available through Eventbrite. The B.C. men’s champion will advance to the Brier national championship March 1-10 in Regina and the provincial women’s champion to the Scotties Tournament of Hearts national championship Feb. 16-25 in Calgary.