Three Canadian rinks are off to a solid start to the 2009-10 World Curling Tour season.
Olympic gold medallist Brad Gushue of Newfoundland and Alberta skip Randy Ferbey kicked off the season with two wins apiece Friday at the Baden Masters in Switzerland, while Nova Scotia’s Mark Dacey finished the day 1-1.
Gushue and teammates Jamie Korab, Mark Nichols and Ryan Fry won a close 3-2 opening round match against Switzerland’s Ralph Stockli, and then crushed Swiss skip Patrick Vuille 8-1 in five ends to finish the day 2-0.
The gold medallist at the 2006 Olympics, Gushue is looking for his second Baden Masters title after winning the tournament in 2007.
Ferbey, whose team of Marcel Rocque, Scott Pfeifer and David Nedohin has already earned a berth to the Canadian Olympic qualifier in December, won his first of the season in extra ends, an 8-6 victory over Swiss skip Manuel Ruch.
The six-time Brier and four-time world champion then beat Frenchman Thomas Dufour 10-6 to bring his record to 2-0.
Also with a perfect record after Day 1 of competition at the Baden Masters is two-time and reigning world champion, David Murdoch of Scotland.
It was Murdoch who beat Dacey in their first game of the tournament, a 6-2 victory for the Scotsman over seven ends.
Dacey and his team of Bruce Lohnes, Kris Granchelli and Andrew Gibson recovered in their second game of the day with a 7-3 win over Russia’s Andrey Drozdov.
Murdoch picked up his second win with an extra end 5-4 victory over Switzerland’s Alex Attinger.
The Baden Masters continues Saturday, with the semi-final and finals slated for Sunday.
The winners take home prize money equal to approximately $10,000 Canadian.