TRURO - Colleen Pinkney and her curling teammates have a special fondness for Summerside's Silver Fox Curling Club.
Who could blame them? After all, it is the site where they won the 2009 Canadian Senior Women's Curling Championship, punching a ticket to Chelyabinsk, Russia, where they became world champions the following year.
So the foursome, which includes mate Wendy Currie, second Shelley MacNutt and lead Susan Creelman, is looking forward to returning to the Silver Fox today to start their quest for a second national title when they meet Northern Ontario's Vicky Barrett at 10 a.m.
"Just the comfort of it," Pinkney said. "There won't be any unknowns as far as the facility goes."
A comfortable Pinkney squad, which earned it's berth at the week-long national event by taking the provincial crown six weeks ago in Digby, could mean bad news for the rest of the field. But the team knows its previous national and world titles mean nothing right now. It's all about the here and now this week.
"It doesn't happen every year," Pinkney said. "For every team that wins there are others that wanted to win as well and worked just as hard as you did. We wanted to do it the last couple years but that's how hard it is, you don't always get what you want."
Armed with that knowledge, the Truro Curling Club squad isn't about to let its chance slip away. If there's anything they would enjoy more than a second national title, it's a trip to next year's world championship, a date and location for which has yet to be announced by the World Curling Federation.
"It would be another adventure," Pinkney said. "It's something we would be very proud to do. It's in our plan, it's always in our plan."
But the team is taking things in baby steps. First on the list is a good start. To do that, Pinkney will need to get a read on the ice quickly and communicate the conditions to her teammates, a well-known strongpoint for the group.
"I think it's a momentum thing," Creelman said. "If you get off to a good start and you like the conditions, you just have a good feeling. It's a long week if you're struggling."
Then, the team hopes to qualify for the playoff round.
"I think those are realistic," Creelman said.
To make sure they're prepared, the group has been practicing three times per week since winning the provincial title and also takes on Truro's other competitive teams twice a week to stay in game form. They've also taken veteran curler Judy Burgess to Summerside as coach, a role she filled with the team in 2009.
They know the competition won't make things easy, with several former national and world champions in the field, along with many others who have played in the Scotties national women's tournament, Canada's premier women's event.
"That's why they're there," Pinkney said. "Anybody who wins a provincial these days is very talented, I think."
Team: Skip Colleen Pinkney, mate Wendy Currie, second Shelley MacNutt, lead Susan Creelman
Club: Truro Curling Club
Achievements: 2013 Nova Scotia champions, 2009 Nova Scotia champions, 2009 Canadian champions, 2010 world champions
Sponsors: Murphy's Fish and Chips, Stella-Jones Inc., Prudential Woods Realty, Kingston Aluminum, Truro Massage Therapy, BMO Bank of Montreal.