The World Junior A Challenge is making its way back to Bonnyville in 2018. The announcement came last night at a press conference held in the C2. This is the second time Bonnyville will have hosted the tournament in three years. The 2017 edition saw Team Canada West defeat the United States in Truro, Nova Scotia.
Robb Hunter is co-chair of the host committee, he explains what he felt learning the news. “Absolutely floored, yet really thrilled. I knew that the work we put in 2016 made it a tremendous event. To be recognized, to be able to host again is just fantastic. It’s gonna be a lot of work again, but we’re looking forward to it.”
More than 230 NHL draft picks have played in the tournament, including 36 first round selections. of the 12 gold medal games played since the tournaments inception in 2006, 10 have featured at least one Canadian team.
“It’s a word class event.” says Hunter. “World class hockey. You get your first opportunity to see players on the world’s stage, playing for their country. the passion and the hockey you see is second to none.”
The World Junior A Challenge has been scheduled for December 9th to the 15th in 2018 in Bonnyville. Hunter says there’s work to be done before puck drop.
“The planning process will start right away. The host organizing committee will be coming together. Very shortly we’ll be looking for volunteers. It took almost 150 volunteers to put the event together in 2016, we’re hoping to make it even bigger this time.”