In 1958, Ray Turnbull was a member of Terry Braunstein's youngest-ever Manitoba men's curling championship team. In 1965, he was with Braunstein again when they won the provincial championship and matched it with a Canadian Brier title.
One of Turnbull's great regrets in the sport of curling is that he can't add World Champion to that list of credentials but he has no regrets about the pair of curling careers which grew from those years. Either of them were worthy of earning Hall of Fame status.
Together, Turnbull's future place of honour as a Builder of Curling in the Manitoba Sports Hall of Fame was guaranteed through his coaching efforts across Canada and internationally as well as through his high-profile 25-year role as a TSN curling analyst.
Although he remained competitive for many years (as proven by his back-to-back provincial Senior Men's titles with Barry Fry in 1994 and '95), Turnbull became active off the ice early in his curling career. He dabbled in the curling equipment field but it was in teaching and coaching where his Builder status was first solidified.
Ray Turnbull gets a fair share of the credit for teaching the Europeans both the technical skills and the strategy that saw the World Men's Championship trophy reside in Sweden, Norway or Switzerland six times between 1973 and 1984. Canada won only three times in that period. Beginning in 1979, European teams also won four of the first five World Women's championships while Canada earned only one win. Turnbull's coaching had helped create a time of international curling dominance by Europe which was a stepping stone to the sport's current Olympic status
Fittingly, as Turnbull's other Hall of Fame Builder career winds down, this year's Vancouver Olympic curling coverage figures prominently in his 25th season as a TSN curling broadcaster.
Turnbull has shown a remarkable ability to explain the intricacies of the sport to the non-curler or the recreational club curler at the same time as not dumbing it down so much he offends the more knowledgeable fan. In that role, Ray Turnbull and his broadcast-team colleagues get a very large share of the credit for making championship curling a 'must-watch' sports viewing choice for audiences which are among the largest of any Canadian sport.
One-on-one on the ice as a coach OR speaking to thousands through the medium of television, Ray Turnbull's ability to explain the sport of curling has built an international knowledge of his sport which is unparalleled among fans, and even participants, of most other sports. For that contribution, he is most worthy of Manitoba Sports Hall of Fame honour as a Builder of his Sport.
Ray Turnbull is also a member of the Manitoba Curling Hall of Fame.