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Colchester County cousins thrilled with the opportunity to compete in Masters curling event

Cousins Karlee, left, and Lindsey Burgess will sweep stones against the top curlers in the world next later this month at the Canadian Beef Masters at the Rath-Eastlink Community Centre.
Cousins Karlee, left, and Lindsey Burgess will sweep stones against the top curlers in the world later this month at the Canadian Beef Masters at the Rath-Eastlink Community Centre. © WCF/Richard Gray

TRURO, N.S. – Three years ago, Lindsey Burgess attended the Pinty's Grand Slam of Curling Masters event in Truro as a volunteer. Later this month, she’ll return – this time as a competitor.

Burgess throws lead stones for the Kaitlyn Jones rink that will play in the competition Oct. 23-28 at the Rath-Eastlink Community Centre.

“I remember I volunteered for it and I was getting signatures and I was star-struck by everyone,” Lindsey said of the 2015 event. “And I remember I was talking to dad and saying it would be so cool playing on this stage.”

The Canadian Beef Masters features 15 of the world’s top men’s and women’s teams. Each earned their spot based on the World Curling Tour’s Order of Merit rankings. The Jones foursome, which also includes Lindsey’s cousin Karlee (second) and Lauren Lenentine (third), are reigning world junior champions and will be playing on a sponsor’s exemption.

“We’re super honoured, especially for Lindsey and I, to play in our hometown,” said Karlee. “It’s the biggest stage we can be on at this point in our lifetimes, so we’re really excited.

“It’s a pretty special moment for our team.”

Karlee, 20, from Hilden, and Lindsey, 19, of Truro, both learned the game at Truro Curling Club, but didn’t play on the same junior team until last year. They enjoyed great success, winning provincial, national and world gold, and now look forward to the opportunity of playing together at the next level.

“Even growing up, we said, ‘we’re gonna play together one day, we’re gonna make it together one day,’ and we did and it’s just so cool to be able to share that with each other, especially since we are so close and it’s pretty cool to be able to do that with your best friend,” Lindsey said.

Team Jones will be the youngest group at the Masters, however, the girls have somewhat of a feel for the competition at this level. Last spring, the foursome competed in the Humpty’s Champions Cup in Calgary where they faced world-class teams skipped by Val Sweeting, Kerri Einarson, Silvana Tirinzoni and Olympic champion Jennifer Jones. Although they went winless, they gained valuable experience, which should bode well for the Masters event.

“Win or lose, we just want to prove that we belong here and that we’re gonna get back to this stage eventually,” Lindsey said.

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Jones vs. Homan a special matchup

TRURO, N.S. – If there’s one game Lindsey Burgess especially looks forward to, it’s a Friday, Oct. 26 matchup against Ontario’s Rachel Homan, who won the Masters event the last time Truro hosted in 2015.

Lindsey will play against her childhood idol, Joanne Courtney, who throws second stones for Team Homan.

“Just as a front-end player, she’s the best female sweeper there is, and I look up to that a lot, so I think she’s kind of the person that I’ve always been watching,” Lindsey said.

The star power coming to Truro later this month, Lindsey says, will make for a surreal experience.

“It’s crazy, it’s so cool and even when you’re playing your idols and then you look to your left, and it’s like, ‘there’s Brad Gushue,’ and then you look to your right, and it’s like, ‘there’s Jennifer Jones.’ It’s pretty insane to be in the same event, and to have our names next to theirs is pretty strange.”

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