The World Curling Federation has revealed the dates and venues for the new Curliing World Cup – a four-leg international series that will get underway in September.
The first of the four legs will take place in the brand new Suzhou Sports Centre, in Suzhou, China from September 12 to 16.
The series will then head to the Ralston Arena in Omaha, United States from December 5 to 9.
Next up will be the Jonkoping Curling Club in Jonkoping, Sweden, where action will take place from January 30 to February 3.
The series will conclude with the Grand Final, in the Chinese capital of Beijing, China from May 8 to 12.
This is the only international curling event where teams will wear their national flag and colours with prize money available.
In 2017, China based Kingdomway Sports - which focuses on the promotion, operation and development of sports and lifestyle industries - invested over $10 million (£7.6 million/€8.5 million) for implementation of the Curling World Cup.
A total of $165,000 (£125,500/€141,000) will be distributed at each of the first three events.
This will then rise to $283,500 (£215,700/€243,000) for the Grand Final.
The eight competing men’s teams will be China, the United States, Sweden, Canada, Switzerland, Japan, Norway and Scotland.
The women’s list is the same, but with South Korea and Russia replacing Switzerland and Norway.
The mixed doubles teams matches the men's list save for South Korea and Russia replacing Japan and Scotland.
Each event will have its own unique colour scheme based on the series' new brand identity.
These distinctions will be most prominent on perimeter boards and in the design of the houses.
The Curling World Cup can now be followed, on its brand new media channels, on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.
Each event, including the Grand Final, will have competitions for women, men and mixed doubles and will last five days, starting on a Wednesday and finishing on a Sunday.
Games will be eight ends as standard and, in each discipline, there will be two groups of four.
Teams will play a double round robin, with the teams finishing top of their groups moving into finals that will decide the winners.
In a move away from other international curling championships, there will be no extra ends to decide tied games.
Instead, there will be a one stone shoot-out, for each team, with the team closest to the button winning the game.
Expanding on that idea, teams will be handed three points for a win in eight ends and two points if they win after a shoot-out.
The team that loses the shoot-out gets a single point and a losing team after eight ends gets zero points.
An additional single stone shoot-out will take place between teams tied for first place at the end of the round robin.
Other variations include coaches being positioned at ice level and being able to interact with the athletes between ends, and, rather than thinking time allocated for the full game, teams will have time allocated for each end.
For women’s and men’s games, from ends one to four, teams will have four minutes thinking time and four minutes 15 seconds from ends five to eight.
In mixed doubles, it will be two minutes 50 seconds and then three minutes.
For the first three legs, the host Member Association for each event will receive places.
Then, the world rankings will be used to qualify the highest ranked Member Associations from each of the Americas, European and Pacific-Asia zones.
Another two teams, for each discipline, will be selected by the World Curling Federation Board, based on broadcast interest, marketing potential and/or promotional opportunities.
This process decides the teams for all three legs and Member Associations can choose to send the same athletes to each event, or have different athletes compete.
Groups will be determined based on a Curling World Cup ranking list that is being developed.