Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Peters pulls pin on 'dysfunctional' team

Season over -- won't curl in MCA Bonspiel

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THE only time former Brier champion Vic Peters will be stepping on a sheet of curling ice during the 121st MCA Bonspiel later this week is in his role as icemaker at the Fort Garry Curling Club.

Peters, 50, said Monday he's put away his broom and slider at least for the remainder of this competitive season after his thirdless team failed to earn a berth in the 2009 Safeway Championship during the Winnipeg zone playdowns.

Even though five berths to the provincial championship in Selkirk next month are still available through the MCA spiel, Peters -- who's played in about 20 provincials, winning three -- said he's done curling competitively for this season and, potentially, forever.

"It's kind of a team situation thing," said the 1992 Canadian champion, known for years as part of Manitoba's Big Three with world champions Kerry Burtnyk and Jeff Stoughton.

"We didn't do well in the zones and one of my guys didn't show up, it was kind of a team matter that just disillusioned me. So I decided that instead of trying to hook up with other guys and this and that, at this point I would just not play."

Peters was leery of discussing the issue, but the entire curling community knows former world champion Ken Tresoor, Peters's third, failed to show up for two crucial zones games.

Left in the lurch and with no fifth, Peters, long-time second Chris Neufeld and lead Ken Fenton lost both their games in which Tresoor was AWOL, were bounced from the zones and the team then broke up.

"I don't really want to do it in the media, I talked to the guys and told them my feelings that as far as I was concerned, that team was finished," Peters said. "I really didn't want to make a public thing of it.

"It's just that obviously, when something like that happens, it affects more than one guy. It's a team sport. There were lots of other things along the way. We played very poorly this year and of course all that has a bearing when things happen."

Peters said there's an understanding that work needs to come before curling. On the other hand, he said, if a player is going to commit to a competitive season, he has to make himself available at the most crucial times of the season.

In this case, that didn't happen. "I would say it was just a team in disarray more or less, a dysfunctional team. It just wasn't working. Last year, that same team worked pretty good, but this year it didn't.

"This was kind of the last straw, more or less -- for me, anyway. It shocked us a bit... It was more disbelief and disillusionment with the way it ended."

Peters said he hasn't figured out what he'll do next year. "I think if the right situation came along, I still feel like I can play half-decent. Whether I change my mind by the time next season rolls around, I don't know.

"If the right situation doesn't happen to come along or present itself, it may be I may not play competitively. But I still feel like I want to."

chris.cariou@freepress.mb.ca

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition January 27, 2009 C4

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