Bonnyville Mayor Gene Sobolewski described a September 20th debriefing with Hockey Canada as “eye opening” , regarding the town’s loss to Brooks in bidding for the 2019 RBC Cup.
Sobolewski says while the town had a solid bid in Hockey Canada’s eyes, a few factors gave Brooks the edge.
“They committed to building a second dressing room… that’s kind of what put them over the top. In terms of contribution and funding, we nailed just about everything.”
Sobolewski also noted that Brooks has a video board to play replays and the like on, which the RJ Lalonde doesn’t. Sobolewski suggested it might be an addition for the Bonnyville C2 board to consider.
Losing the 2019 bid is far from the end though.
“They have encouraged us to continue to make applications, particularly in 2020,” said Sobolewski. “Hockey Canada is going to come up with what they’re going to be looking for in terms of bids and hosts and stuff like that. So stay tuned for that… but we have to take the information that was executed in Brooks and take that to heart to see what we can do to enhance our bids.”
Sobolewski said that Hockey Canada was quick to dispel the perception that they alternate the hosts between Western and Eastern Canada.
“That was the one thing they fell over themselves to make sure that the wrong impression didn’t go out. This east versus west, that is totally not part of the equation.”
The RBC Cup is the Junior A Hockey equivalent to the Memorial Cup, with champions from four different regions and the host community competing for the trophy.