Vernon's Jim Cotter is favoured on the men's side of the Prestige Hotels & Resorts Curling Classic.

Vernon's Jim Cotter is favoured on the men's side of the Prestige Hotels & Resorts Curling Classic.

Jim Cotter among favourites at Vernon Prestige Curling Classic

B.C. champ opens against Darryl Horsman of Arizona Friday afternoon

As soon as Jim Cotter pays his entry fee, the popular Vernon skip becomes a favourite in the annual Prestige Hotels & Resorts Curling Classic.

Cotter, who has reunited with Calgary firefighter Johnny Morris this season, will actually have former third Ryan Kuhn taking Morris’ place this weekend as 12 men’s teams chase $12,000 in prize money.

The men’s draw starts at 4:30 p.m. today with Cotter taking on Darryl Horsman of the Coyotes Curling Club in Tempe, Az.

Sean Geall of Maple Ridge, who won the provincial men’s title in 2009, goes up aganst Tyler Tardi of Chilliwack at 4:30.

Tardi won a bronze medal in the Canadian Junior Men’s Curling Championships last year.

The late Friday men’s draw goes at 9:30 with draws Saturday slated for 11 a.m. and 7:30 p.m. The final goes Sunday at 12:30 p.m.

Fans can purchase a weekend pass for just $25. Vernon’s Shawn Lightfoot Band plays the Saturday night dance.

There are 24 women’s rinks with $42,000 on the line.

Vernon’s Kim Slattery, who has Alyssa Kyllo at third, tangles with Marla Mallett of Langley in the 8 a.m. draw today.

Bingyu (Betty) Wang of China, Cheryl Bernard of Calgary, Chelsey Carey of Calgary, Kelsey Rocque of Edmonton and Val Sweeting of Vegreville are among the favourites.