It was interesting to see stories on Russ Howard coaching his son at the 2019 Saskatchewan Tankard provincial curling playdowns, accompanied by daughter Ashley who is part of the CurlSask Team; and being referred to as curling royalty. However, Saskatchewan has a long history of one family competing in championship events in Saskatchewan, racking up multiple success stories along the way.
The 2019 SaskTel Saskatchewan men’s provincial curling championship included all four members of the Heidt family. While Drew and Mitch were part of Team Virtue, coached by dad Brad, Josh skipped his own team in the weekend’s event.
This family of curlers brings a long line of success stories into the unique scenario of having all members of one family participating at one championship event. Championship events have been part of these fellows’ curling resumés for a number of years.
The patriarch, Brad Heidt, is well known for skipping a team that included Wayne Charteris, John Whetter and Warren Rechenmacher at the 1982 Labbat Brier after winning Saskatchewan men’s provincials. Heidt returned to the Labbatt Brier in 1995 with a team that included Mark Dacey, Wayne Charteris and Dan Ormsby. The team finished the round robin in second place and lost to Kerry Burtnyk in the Brier final, making for some exciting times for the community of Kerrobert and province of Saskatchewan.
Brad has also won mixed provincials in 2007 with Darlene Gilles, along with his son Drew and wife Tracy. He has won six world curling tour events. In 2010 Brad skipped a team of Gerald Shymko, Dan Ormsby and Dale Hannon to a senior men’s provincial title, which he repeated in 2011 with Sandy Sutherland taking over for Hannon. In 2016, Brad skipped his team of long time team mate Dan Ormsby, along with Mark Lang and Glenn Heitt to the senior men’s provincial title sending them to the national senior men’s curling championship. In 2019, Heidt skipped this same team to another provincial senior men’s curling berth. Brad has also coached his wife and sons in past Saskatchewan playdown events.
Josh Heidt, skipped his own team at the 2019 SaskTel Tankard and is no stranger to the event as he has been there seven times before. Josh was part of his brother Drew’s team that captured the Saskatchewan High School Athletics provincial boys title in 2004. Josh qualified for the Canada Winter Games in curling in 2007. In 2015, his team won the Red Deer Classic, beating Brenda Botcher in this curling tour event.
Mitch Heidt won the Canada Winter Games curling event in 2003. He has earned spots at three World Curling Tour events and has made eight appearances at the Saskatchewan Tankard men’s [rovincial curling championships.
Drew Heidt won the Canada Winter Games in 2003 in the curling event. In 2004, his team won the Saskatchewan High School Athletics senior high boys curling provincial title. In 2007, he captured a mixed provincial curling title along with his dad, Brad, and mom, Tracy. In 2008, his team captured the Canadian University curling title, sending them as Team Canada to World University Games in Turino, Italy, with Steve Laycock as a team mate. Drew has also curled on the World Curling Tour and made six Saskatchewan Tankard appearances
When asked what the biggest takeaway from curling is, Drew responds, “There is more to sports than the game itself. It can also be fun, stressful and grueling all at the same time.”
Multiple times the Heidt men have met up at competition either as team mates or opponents.
If you weren’t in a curling rink in the winter, where would you be? Drew answers, “Probably golfing somewhere warm.”
The Heidt family continues to farm together. This is a fourth generation family farm. The farm life allows the guys to curl in the cold winters, and they maintain that if they didn’t have curling, they might just go crazy.