Time For A Catchup

Apologies for the lack of content of late – I realise that a lot has been going on in the curling world recently so here is a review of the past few days.

Starting with wheelchair curling, the World Wheelchair Curling Championships in Sochi, Russia, came to and end on Saturday.

Scotland finished the round-robin stage in sixth place with a W4 L5 record and then lost out in a tie-breaker to the Russians. The medals were as follows:

Gold – Canada
Silver – Sweden
Bronze – China

You can read the final reports from Sochi here.

Just today (Monday) the WCF announced a new ranking system for wheelchair curling that mirrors that of the able-bodied game. Scotland/Great Britain currently occupy fifth spot and you can read more about the new system here.

The good news from the Great Britain wheelchair curling team is that they have qualified for the 2014 Paralympic Winter Games – the full story is here and congratulations to the team.

Dumfries was hosting the Division 3 Junior Challenge this weekend and Aberdeen 1 came out on top in this one – they are now promoted to Division 2 along with Borders. All the scores are here and a report is here.

It was also a weekend of national championships all over the world.

In Canada, the Canadian Women’s Curling Championship was won by Ontario’s Rachel Homan. She beat Manitoba’s Jennifer Jones 9-6 in Sunday’s final. The event website is here.

Back in the British Isles, it was the English Championships at Fenton’s. Alan MacDougall took the men’s title while Anna Fowler was crowned ladies’ champion. Congratulations to both teams and keep an eye out on John Brown’s English Curling Blog for reports.

In Germany, Andrea Schöpp and John Jahr won their respective national titles while the big news from Switzerland is that Mirjam Ott, World Women’s Champion from 2012, will not be defending her title as the Swiss championship was won by Silvana Tirinzoni. The men’s event was claimed by Sven Michel.

The most interesting story of the weekend, however, was surely that of the Norwegian men’s championship – Thomas Ulsrud’s team won the title but without the man himself due to family reasons. Nothing unusual in that you might think but his replacement was Scotland’s Ewan MacDonald! You can read all about this extraordinary turn of events on the Team Ulsrud website here. It remains to be seen whether or not Ewan will be donning the legendary trousers and skipping Team Norway at the Men’s Worlds in Canada come March/April…

Greenacres was hosting the Grand Masters Bonspiel this weekend. Thanks to Hugh and Christine Stewart for sending this report and some pictures:

16 teams entered the 2013 Greenacres Grand Masters Bonspiel 21 to 23 February.

And with all the years of experience behind them it was a hard fought battle for three games as the teams battled it out for a place in the high or low road finals.

Jim Bryson and his team from Ayr met Bill Watt from Stirling in the top game and it was a closely fought match. Neither team was giving anything away, in the end it was the Stirling team who came through to take the title – Bill Watt, Robert Armstrong, John Phillips and Bill Allan are the 2013 Grand Masters.

It was a different story in the low road final, Donnie Shedden and his team from Auchenharvie against the team from Lockerbie. Bob Rae, Matt Murdoch, Bert Duncan and Bill Mitchell dominated the game from the opening ends and ran out the winners on a scoreline of 7-4.

High Road Winners (L-R): Bill Allan, Bill Watt, Robert Armstrong, John Phillips

High Road Runners Up (L-R): Jim Bryson, Jack Kennedy, Jack Brown, Jim Young

Low Road Winners (L-R): Bobby Rae, Matt Murdoch, Bert Duncan, Bill Mitchell

Low Road Runners Up (L-R): John Pringle, Jim Kemp, Donnie Shedden, Fred Passway

All the participants for 2013

Photos are © Hugh Stewart 2013

Finally, the Henderson Bishop Trophy got underway at Stranraer today (Monday) and will run until Thursday. Keep track of all the scores here.