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Riders vs Bombers – Labour Day Classic Memories

Published: Thursday, Aug 31st 2023, 3:08pm

By Alex Dormuth (@RealAlexD


It’s almost as great as Grey Cup Week… it’s Labour Day Classic Weekend here in the CFL! It’s a time where you can throw the records out the window, because they don’t mean ANYTHING when it comes to the Riders vs Bombers! As we look ahead to this year’s installment, I’m taking a look back at some of my favourite moments from the Labour Day Classic:


(Keep in mind, I was born in 1986 and didn’t really pay much attention to the CFL until the late 90s… I KNOW I missed some great LDC moments)


First, shout out to the Bomber fans that make the trek to Regina every year. You are what makes it fun and we love having you here! I’ll always remember my first Labour Day Classic, sitting in the upper deck at Taylor Field, drunk Bomber fans behind me spilling drinks all over me… my mom wasn’t too impressed, but they were super nice and enjoying themselves, despite the Riders beating them by 3 touchdowns.


Some of my favourite Labour Day Classic moments, though, never happened on the field. Going to games in Section 27, Row 34 seats 6 & 7 with my best friend Morgan were some of the best times of my life. I’d be a liar if I said I didn’t miss it. I wish I had an after pic of the 2007 game (more on that in a bit), but here’s us just before kickoff… and yes, the painted bodies helped the Riders win the Grey Cup that year, I fully believe that!


Ok, on to the games portion of this article.


– Let’s go back just a few years to the most recent Rider victory in the LDC, the 2019 game. The game itself wasn’t much to write home about, but when the LDC comes down to a last second play, it means that much more! With zeroes on the clock, Riders kicker Brett Lauther kicked the game winning field goal then ran straight to Pil Country to celly hard with the fans!


– I mentioned you can throw records out the window. Case in point, 2015. The Riders entered the game 0-9 and had FINALLY just fired Head Coach Corey Chamblin, going with Bobby Dyce for the time being. Well, the Riders had their way with the Bombers that day, winning 37-19. Yes, even after that game, Rider fans were talking about playoffs at 1-9… they only won 3 games that year, but if you win the LDC, people here will take the season as a win.


– 2012 was also pretty awesome for the Riders, winning 52-0. I felt bad for the Bombers fans that traveled to Taylor Field that day, but in a way, I also didn’t. That was a lot of fun!


– How about 2002, though? The Rocky Butler game! Things were not well in Riderville at that time, but they had their fourth stringer starting and that was MORE than enough! Rocky ran for 3 touchdowns and a Rider legend was born!


– And who could forget 2007? With a handful of seconds left on the clock, Kerry Joseph took off on a QB keeper, the seas parted and before we knew it, he was mobbed in the endzone by his teammates while high fives and hugs galore happened in Section 27! I’ll never forget that moment for as long as I love. From Row 34, seat 7, I saw that hole open up in the Bombers defense and had my arms in the air before KJ hit the line of scrimmage! And that win wasn’t just about Labour Day… that win was it. I knew then at that moment, the 2007 team was different, that there was going to be no stopping them, that the Saskatchewan Roughriders would win the Grey Cup that year.


I wonder what kind of moment we will see this year and who the hero will be at Mosaic Stadium. It’s a great weekend for all CFL fans, I hope you enjoy it!


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