1979 Macdonald Brier

The 1979 Macdonald Brier, Canada's national men's curling championship was held from March 4 to March 10 at the Ottawa Civic Centre in Ottawa.

1979 Macdonald Brier
Host cityOttawa
ArenaOttawa Civic Centre
DatesMarch 4–10[1]
Winner Manitoba
Curling clubDeer Lodge CC, Winnipeg
SkipBarry Fry
ThirdBill Carey
SecondGordon Sparkes
LeadBryan Wood
Finalist Northern Ontario &
« 1978
1980 »

Manitoba's Barry Fry won his only Brier title of his career. He clinched the Brier title following the Friday night (March 9) draw. The rink which also included Bill Carey, Gordon Sparkes and Bryan Wood would go on to represent Canada at the 1979 Air Canada Silver Broom, the World Curling Championships.

It would be the last Brier under the sponsorship of Macdonald Tobacco. This marked an end of an era, as Macdonald Tobacco had sponsored the event since the first Brier in 1927. Following the final draw, the head of Macdonald Tobacco, David Macdonald Stewart declared "[f]or half a century, Macdonald Tobacoo has followed an idea ... a dream to ... bring together Canadians, from all parts of the country and all walks of life, in a national sporting event. Curling was the ideal sport. It's been a wonderful experience. We've now seen the final chapter in 50 years of Canadian history". To commemorate the end of the Macdonald era, every living Brier champion skip at the time were invited to attend the Brier, and had their picture taken together. The lone surviving curler from the 1927 Brier, Emmet Smith (Northern Ontario) was also invited.[2] The group of skips gathered before the final draw of the event for a special ceremony.[3]

The event was also the last Brier without a playoff following the round robin. The final attendance of the event was 89,081 which was a Brier record at the time.[4] 7000 people witnessed the final draw on March 10, despite the matches being meaningless to the outcome of the event.

The event was marred with slow ice conditions and bad rocks,[5] which were borrowed from a local curling club. The rocks were mismatched and pitted which "reduced shotmaking to a guessing game."[6] Part way through the week, organizers asked for the teams to vote on changing the rocks. The teams that favoured hitting, including the leading Manitoba rink opposed changing the rocks, as the mismatched rocks made draw shots more difficult than hit shots.[7]


Alberta British Columbia Manitoba
Crestwood CC, Edmonton

Skip: Paul Devlin
Third: John Hunter
Second: Pat Ryan
Lead: Derek Devlin

Vancouver CC, Vancouver

Skip: Glen Pierce
Third: Wayne Mathewson
Second: Eric Davey
Lead: Fuji Miki

Deer Lodge CC, Winnipeg

Skip: Barry Fry
Third: Bill Carey
Second: Gordon Sparkes
Lead: Bryan Wood

New Brunswick Newfoundland Northern Ontario
Thistle St. Andrews CC, Saint John

Skip: Richard Belyea
Third: Charlie Sullivan
Second:Don Pennell
Lead: Brian McLeod

St. John's CC, St. John's

Skip: Jeff Thomas
Third: Toby McDonald
Second: Peter Hollett
Lead: Ken Thomas

Thunder Bay WC, Thunder Bay

Skip: Larry Pineau
Third: Scott Hamilton
Second: George Campbell
Lead: Cliff Campbell

Nova Scotia Ontario Prince Edward Island
Dartmouth CC, Dartmouth

Skip: Alan Darragh
Third: Peter MacPhee
Second: Mike Currie
Lead: Dave Durrant

Annandale CC, Pickering

Skip: Bob Fedosa
Third: Bob Turcotte
Second: Craig Garratt
Lead: Doug Morrison

Charlottetown CC, Charlottetown

Skip: Wayne Matheson
Third: Ken McDonald
Second: Al Legerwood
Lead: John Scales

Quebec Saskatchewan Northwest Territories/Yukon
St. Laurent CC, Mount Royal

Skip: Jim Ursel
Third: Don Aitken
Second: Warren Wallace
Lead: Malcolm Turner

Nutana CC, Saskatoon

Skip: Rick Folk
Third: Bob Thompson
Second: Tom Wilson
Lead: Jim Wilson

Yellowknife CC, Yellowknife

Skip: Don Strang
Third: Klaus Schoenne
Second: Rick Borden
Lead: Clay Cedarholm

Round robin standings

Brier champion
 ManitobaBarry Fry101
 SaskatchewanRick Folk83
 Northern OntarioLarry Pineau83
 OntarioBob Fedosa65
 Prince Edward IslandWayne Matheson65
 AlbertaPaul Devlin65
 QuebecJim Ursel56
 British ColumbiaGlen Pierce56
 Nova ScotiaAlan Darragh47
 New BrunswickRichard Belyea38
NewfoundlandJeff Thomas38
 Northwest Territories/YukonDon Strang29

Round robin results

March 4

Draw 1
Draw 2

March 5

Draw 3
Draw 4
Draw 5

March 6

Draw 6
Draw 7

March 7

Draw 8
Draw 9

March 8

Draw 10
Draw 11

March 9

Draw 12
Draw 13

March 10

Draw 14


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