So far, Gushue's winning ways have carried over to Players Championship
Make it 15 straight competitive wins for Brad Gushue and his St. John’s rink.
A source of pride and inspiration, says long time Labrador City curler.
Avid Labrador city curler Rick Casmey at the Carol Curling Club, where a banner honouring team Gushue’s Olympic victory hangs.
“I held my breath more than once, in that final game," Rick Casmey said.
After so many undefeated games logic says, "he has to lose one,” said Casey, “but deep in my heart I just knew he would win.”
Casmey has curled at the Carol Curling Club since it started in 1965. He has been the clubs President, a coach, a player, and much, much more.
Casmey says to the best of his recollection he remembers seeing Mark Nichols at the club when he was about seven years old.
"Back then, curling for younger players wasn't as common," he said. “But we encouraged younger players like Mark and Mike Adam to, get involved and to provide them with the ability to compete so they could improve their skills.”
"It's rewarding to see the number of good curlers coming through the clubs doors," he said with a huge smile filled with pride.
Many teams from the Carol Curling Club have gone on to provincial and national championships over the years. Two of the clubs curlers, Mark Nichols and Mike Adam were on the Canadian team when they won the Canadian and then the world junior championships in 2001.
"We were ecstatic," said Casmey.
Then they were on the team when they won gold at the Olympics in 2006.
"It was like a dream, people gathered at the club to watch the game as they took Olympic gold," he recalls. “All the while they pointed to our modest four sheet rink saying that's where they started.”
This year has been phenomenal for Team Gushue of Newfoundland and Labrador. They took the brier gold, and now the world championship. For Team Gushue and team member Mark Nichols that means winning world junior, Canadian, world senior and Olympic gold medals. That is a collection of hardware any curler in the world would covet.
Rick Casmey says it's not just Team Gushue or Mark Nichols who are getting the benefits from all this curling glory.
Young local curlers and young people who aspire to do their very best in whatever their pursuit, heard from Mark in person recently. He was guest speaker for the athletes’ awards.
"Young and old can look at Mark and know that even if they are in a small town, they can still be the best in the world. It takes a lot of hard work, confidence, and determination," says Casmey.
Something people who watched hometown boy Mark Nichols saw this week, and over the past decades of his curling career.