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In 2003, the league had struck a committee to examine the feasibility of adding a tenth team, with the leading candidate cities being Quebec City and Halifax. An exhibition game between Ottawa and Montreal was held in Quebec City in 2003 at PEPS Stadium. Before the suspension of the Renegades, league commissioner Tom Wright had indicated that Halifax was the leading candidate for expansion. With the success of Touchdown Atlantic 2010, Moncton has moved into position of front runner for CFL expansion.
As every CFL field has an artificial surface, the Touchdown Atlantic game is the only CFL game played on grass all season. However, artificial turf has to be laid over the track at each end of the stadium in order to accommodate the end zones.
The first exhibition pre-season game was played in Halifax, Nova Scotia, at Huskies Stadium in June 2005. The game was between the Toronto Argonauts and the Hamilton Tiger-Cats and ended in a 16–16 tie.
The game was to gauge Halifax's support for a potential CFL expansion team, which would likely be named the Schooners. Temporary seating was added to boost the capacity to 11,000. The game sold out. It was also used by the league to test its instant replay challenge system which was implemented in the 2006 CFL season.
Another game was to be played on June 3, 2006 in Halifax at Huskies Stadium with temporary seating for a capacity of 11,000 fans. This game was canceled after the suspension of the Ottawa Renegades. They were supposed to play the Montreal Alouettes.
Prior to the official Touchdown Atlantic series, Saint John, New Brunswick, hosted a pair of exhibition games in 1986 and 1987. In 1986, the Winnipeg Blue Bombers defeated the Montreal Alouettes 35–10 at Canada Games Stadium before 11,463 fans. The following year the Alouettes returned to the Port City and lost 14–13 to the Hamilton Tiger-Cats; the Alouettes would fold a week later.
Regular season gamesEdit
In October 2009, it was officially announced that the Edmonton Eskimos would face the Toronto Argonauts in Moncton, New Brunswick, on September 26, 2010, in the first regular season game ever in Atlantic Canada. That game was referred to as Touchdown Atlantic. The game was played at the new Moncton Stadium on the campus of Université de Moncton in front of a reported sell-out crowd of 20,725. Tickets went on sale to the general public on March 25, 2010, with a one-day pre-sale being conducted the day before. After 32 hours of being up for sale, the 2010 Touchdown Atlantic was announced as a sellout on March 25, 2010. The Eskimos won the game 24–6 thanks to their 247 interception return yards on six interceptions, the second most interception return yards in CFL history.
A 2011 Touchdown Atlantic game, somewhat erroneously known as Touchdown Atlantic II, has been confirmed for the 2011 CFL season, again in Moncton. The Hamilton Tiger-Cats were the designated home team and faced the Calgary Stampeders on September 25, 2011 at Moncton Stadium. Hamilton won the game, 55–36.
No Touchdown Atlantic was held in 2012. The 2013 edition of Touchdown Atlantic will feature the Tiger-Cats hosting the Montreal Alouettes in Moncton.
Potential for Moncton expansionEdit
Moncton is now considered a frontrunner for a Canadian Football League franchise in Atlantic Canada, according to the commissioner. The success of a September 26 game in Moncton — the CFL’s first regular season game in Atlantic Canada — has cemented Moncton in this role. Also, Moncton is considered a front runner for expansion because of its centralized location in the region, since it is likely that a team in the region would represent all three maritime provinces due to the region's small population. Moncton officials negotiated to temporarily host the Hamilton Tiger-Cats for the 2013 season while Ivor Wynne Stadium is demolished and Pan American Stadium is under construction, however the Tiger-Cats (citing a desire to play at a stadium closer to home) later announced they would be playing eight of their nine home games at nearby Guelph, with the ninth being the Touchdown Atlantic contest.
- ↑ "CFL considering Quebec or Halifax expansion". CBC Sports Online. 2003-11-14. http://www.cbc.ca/sports/story/2003/11/14/cfl-expansion031114.html. Retrieved 2006-12-04.
- ↑ "Calvillo, Alouettes hammer Renegades". CBC Sports Online. 2003-06-09. http://www.cbc.ca/sports/story/2003/06/08/als_gades030607.html. Retrieved 2006-12-04.
- ↑ Adam Richardson (2006-01-27). "CFL returning to Halifax". Halifax Daily News. Archived from the original on 2007-03-22. http://web.archive.org/web/20070322030112/http://www.smuhuskies.ca/01272006fb.html. Retrieved 2006-12-04.
- ↑ http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/new-brunswick/story/2010/03/23/nb-moncton-cfl-franchise.html Moncton CFL franchise possible: commissioner
- ↑ Canadian Press (2005-06-11). "Argos, Ticats tie in Halifax". TSN.ca. http://www.tsn.ca/cfl/news_story/?ID=127701. Retrieved 2006-12-04.[dead link]
- ↑ Canadian Press (2006-06-13). "Instant replay has kinks to work out". TSN.ca. http://www.tsn.ca/cfl/news_story/?ID=127847. Retrieved 2006-12-04.[dead link]
- ↑ "CFL to introduce instant replay for 2006". CFL.ca. 2006-06-13. http://www.cfl.ca/index.php?module=newser&func=display&topicnum=&nid=8949. Retrieved 2006-12-04.
- ↑ http://www.cfl.ca/article/td_atlantic_returns_to_halifax TD Atlantic returns to Halifax
- ↑ Canadian Press (2006-01-26). "Argos, Ticats tie in Halifax". TSN.ca. http://www.tsn.ca/cfl/news_story/?ID=152406. Retrieved 2006-12-04.[dead link]
- ↑ Canadian Press (2006-04-09). "CFL suspends operations of Renegades". TSN.ca. Archived from the original on 2007-03-18. http://web.archive.org/web/20070318231040/http://www.tsn.ca/cfl/news_story/?ID=161969. Retrieved 2006-12-04.
- ↑ http://www.profootballarchives.com/1986cflmtl.html
- ↑ http://www.profootballarchives.com/1987cflmtl.html
- ↑ "Our League is coming to Atlantic Canada". Canadian Football League. 2009-10-15. http://www.cfl.ca/article/our-league-is-coming-to-atlantic-canada. Retrieved 2010-02-13.
- ↑ http://www.cfl.ca/article/tickets-to-touchdown-atlantic-sold-out Tickets to Touchdown Atlantic sold out
- ↑ "Turnover Atlantic: Esks enjoy East Coast win". Canadian Football League. 2010-09-26. http://cfl.ca/article/turnover-atlantic-esks-enjoy-east-coast-win. Retrieved 2010-09-26.
- ↑ http://cfl.ca/article/touchdown-atlantic-returning-to-moncton
- ↑ http://www.cfl.ca/article/2011-cfl-schedule-is-here 2011 CFL schedule is here
- ↑ Moncton CFL franchise possible: commissioner
- ↑ Radley, Scott (August 31, 2011). The Moncton Tiger-Cats? Hmmmmmm. Hamilton Spectator. Retrieved August 31, 2011.
- ↑ Naylor, Dave. TICATS MULLING OPTIONS FOR HOSTING GAMES IN 2013. TSN. Retrieved August 31, 2011.
- Touchdown Atlantic at cfl.ca