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Fortunate fans will get shot at $1-M payday

A former world champion needed a few throws just to get a piece of the button and a young hotshot could barely draw into the rings after three or four attempts, left to his own devices.

So what are the odds of Joe Curling Fan -- without the benefit of a practice shot or sweepers -- drawing the jackpot for $1 million in the Capital One Million Dollar Button contest during Sunday's final of the 2009 BDO Classic Canadian Open?

Winnipeg curling icon Kerry Burtnyk and Manitoba Curling Tour champion Mike McEwen couldn't exactly say Wednesday, but McEwen was skeptical that he could draw the button even once in 50 attempts.

"The odds of doing it aren't that good," said Burtnyk, who helped coach some media hacks in a simulation of the event. "It's a hard enough shot to do when you have sweepers and you let the sweepers get it there for you.

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Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 20/1/2009 (3168 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

A former world champion needed a few throws just to get a piece of the button and a young hotshot could barely draw into the rings after three or four attempts, left to his own devices.

So what are the odds of Joe Curling Fan — without the benefit of a practice shot or sweepers — drawing the jackpot for $1 million in the Capital One Million Dollar Button contest during Sunday's final of the 2009 BDO Classic Canadian Open?

Winnipeg curling icon Kerry Burtnyk and Manitoba Curling Tour champion Mike McEwen couldn't exactly say Wednesday, but McEwen was skeptical that he could draw the button even once in 50 attempts.

"The odds of doing it aren't that good," said Burtnyk, who helped coach some media hacks in a simulation of the event. "It's a hard enough shot to do when you have sweepers and you let the sweepers get it there for you.

'Hit the button'

"So for someone to step out there and try and hit the button — I'm not sure if they get a practise rock or not, I don't think they do (the finalist doesn't) — to try to cover the button and be perfect is a real tall order.

"But the prize is well worth it. So it will be really exciting if they can come close."

Four semifinalists have already been selected from previous Grand Slam events and from an online entry process — from Fergus, Ont., Cap-Rouge, Que., St. John's, N.L., and Osoyoos, B.C.

The fifth and final semifinalist will be selected from ballots filled out by fans attending the Classic at MTS Centre this week. There will be a series of playoffs to determine Sunday's finalist.

If the finalist doesn't win the $1 million, they could win $100,000 if the rock bites the button, $25,000 if their rock touches the four-foot circle, $10,000 for hitting the eight-foot, $5,000 for making the 12-foot and $1,000 for any getting past the hog line.

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