Gainer the Gopher

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Gainer in his previous design, used prior to 2019.

Gainer the Gopher is the mascot of the Saskatchewan Roughriders of the Canadian Football League. The Gainer costume is modelled after the Richardson's Ground Squirrel, commonly referred to as a "gopher" in many parts of North America. He is from Parkbeg.[1]

Gainer, whose name is an anagram of "Regina", made his first appearance in 1977 and has been entertaining Rider fans ever since. In 2006, Gainer was given the jersey number 13, symbolizing his contributions as the "13th man" on the field. Prior to this, he wore the jersey number 1/2. He also has two cousins named Leonard and Goof that usually only appear at Roughrider home games.[2]

Gainer continues to be an ambassador for the Riders both at Mosaic Stadium during the football season and at community events all over Saskatchewan throughout the year.

Gainer was first 'played' by Don Hewitt; of Regina, SK, in 1977. Don Hewitt is currently a reporter and on-air personality with CTV Regina.[3]


In 2006, Calgary Stampeders officials barred Gainer from appearing on-field during their west division semi-final game against Saskatchewan, arguing that it would attract attention away from their own mascot.[4][5][6]


External links[edit]


  1. ^ "Gainer the Gopher". Archived from the original on 2010-02-09.
  2. ^ "Gainer The Gopher.... the rodent, the legend". Archived from the original on 24 March 2012.
  3. ^ [1]
  4. ^ "Roughriders mascot barred from Calgary game". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved 2019-07-24.
  5. ^ "Gainer punted from McMahon Stadium". Saskatoon Star-Phoenix. Archived from the original on 2012-11-09. Retrieved 2010-09-17.
  6. ^ "Report: Riders mascot only banned from field". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved 2019-07-24.