Monthly Archives: May 2013

Loose Ends – 30 May

It’s time for another roundup of some off-season curling news…

First of all, the RCCC has announced who has made it onto their Talent Programme for the 2013-14 season. You can find out who the 63 lucky young curlers are here. Will we be seeing some of these names winning medals for Scotland in years to come?

Staying with the RCCC, the winners of the 2013 Scottish Curling Awards have been revealed. Here are the results in full:

Young Curler of the Year – Hannah Fleming
Grassroots Coach of the Year – Andrew Barr
Ice Diamond Award – Norman Cathcart
Team of the Year – Team Scotland (Eve Muirhead, Anna Sloan, Vicki Adams, Claire Hamilton, Lauren Gray, David Hay)

Congratulations to all the winners – you can read more about their achievements here.

Some sad RCCC news to report next and that is the passing of former President Donald L. Whyte. You can read his full obituary here on the RCCC website – Donald was President for the 2002-3 season and the Strathcona Cup captain in 2003.

The final piece of RCCC news for this roundup is that their website now features two new sections – Past Champions and Archive Scores. Details and links to these useful resources are here.

The WCF has had cause to celebrate recently after its Olympic Celebration Tour received a donation of $50,000 from a US charitable foundation. Find out more about the tour and this cash boost here.

We are rapidly approaching just 250 days until the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia and today, Thursday, the organising committee has unveiled the medals for the Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games – take a look here.

Finally, you may recall that Anette Norberg, arguably the greatest female curler of all time announced her retirement from international competition in April – see my post about her here.

Well, it seems she has been enjoying her retirement as a competitor on Sweden’s answer to Strictly Come Dancing. Together with figure skater Tobias Karlsson, they were eliminated third from the show Let’s Dance – you can watch them perform a tango here.

Suggestions for Scottish curlers and dances they could perform on Strictly to the usual address please –

Equally, any curling-dancing puns can be tweeted @tvfth.

Who says off-season has to be boring?

Waterspiel 2014

Well here’s something I never thought I would be writing about…

Curling on a cruise ship.

The gentleman pictured above is Tom Hemenway from Phoenix, Arizona, USA and not long ago he got in touch with me about a very special event called Waterspiel 2014.

Cracking hat too, Tom.

It all sounds like a great way to spend those off-ice months relaxing on a cruise holiday while still being able to play our sport.

Here’s what Tom had to say:

Have you ever thought of curling on a cruise ship? I have, so I tried it! In fact, it went so well we are doing it again.

We would love to invite curlers from everywhere to join us. That includes curlers (and non-curlers) across Europe! Even better, two weeks after our cruise in The Bahamas, the same ship will be in Southampton, UK. I would love nothing more than to leave everything on the ship and host another Waterspiel over there!

It should be stressed that this is a fun bonspiel. It is designed to enjoy a little off-season curling while on a fabulous vacation. The sheets are only 10 feet wide by 50 feet long and we are playing doubles with only six rocks per team. (There can be more than two players per team, but only two may play per end.) Eight-end games will only take about an hour so everyone can enjoy the ship as well.

Two weeks after this cruise returns, the same ship will arrive in Southampton, England. We have had a few people request that we host a Waterspiel in Europe. We would like to invite everyone to join us in the Caribbean. Anyone interested in curling on a ship in late May, 2014, please email us. We already have permission from the ship to host one in Europe. We can also leave all of the equipment on board during the ship’s voyage to England, but we need at least 48 cruise passengers in order to make it work.

Here’s a copy of the official flyer:

If you want more information including pictures and videos then I recommend you visit the official Waterspiel website, their Facebook page and their Twitter account.

It would be great if this event could take place over here in Europe so if you are looking for holiday ideas for the near future then why not give the Waterspiel a try – if you do, then I would love to see pictures of the games and a report of your experiences curling on the ocean.

I assume calm seas are a must…

Photos are © Tom Hemenway / Waterspiel 2014

By the way, did you see this interview with Eve Muirhead in Tuesday’s Daily Record?

Loose Ends – 20 May

Some curling-related news and information to enjoy this week.

The Curling History Blog is continuing its theme of World Juniors nostalgia with a post about the 1981 tournament. Have a read and enjoy some old footage here.

Robin Copland has a new post on his blog about big events being held in Scotland in the near future – you can find his latest thoughts here.

Fans of Norway’s Team Ulsrud should check out their Far From Home video here. I especially liked the Led Zeppelin-soundtracked intro.

For those of you unfamiliar with Buzzfeed, it is a website that collects viral content that is currently being viewed online across the world. Curling doesn’t feature too often but I had to share picture number 29 on this post with you.

One of the questions about our sport that frequently crops up is Why do curling stones curl? Well, it would seem that some researchers in Sweden have a new theory – have a read here.

The WCF have announced that the 2013 European C Group Curling Championships will be held in Tårnby, Denmark in October. Full details are here.

Continuing with news from the WCF, our sport’s governing body has announced a new Green facilities initiative which is designed to help curling nations reduce their carbon footprint – find out more about the scheme here.

The latest WCF Newsletter (May) is now available to read here.

Finally, a reminder of a date for your diaries. The 175th RCCC AGM will take place on Saturday 15 June at 1400 in Perth. Members are encouraged to attend this significant AGM as commemorative pins will be available as well as a drinks reception and a display of curling artefacts. Full details are here.

2013-14 Selections

Over the course of the last week or so, the Royal Caledonian Curling Club has announced its Performance Programme Selections, Academy Selections and Winter University Games Nominations for the 2013-14 season.

I will run down each list in full – as we get ever closer to Sochi 2014, I am sure these selections will cause debate and intrigue. Why not take a look at what people are saying about these squads on the Scottish Curling Forum?

2013-14 British & Scottish Performance Programmes


Scott Andrews, Tom Brewster, Greg Drummond, Michael Goodfellow, David Murdoch

Logan Gray, Grant Hardie, Hamilton McMillan Jnr, Jay McWilliam, Billy Morton, Glen Muirhead, Thomas Muirhead, Ross Paterson, Cameron Smith, Kyle Smith, Kyle Waddell, Richard Woods


Vicki Adams, Claire Hamilton, Eve Muirhead, Anna Sloan, Hannah Fleming, Lauren Gray, Jennifer Dodds, Alice Spence

Mhairi Baird, Jennifer Martin, Sarah Reid, Hazel Smith, Lorna Vevers, Vicki Wright, Rebecca Kesley, Rachel Hannen


Ian Donaldson, Gregor Ewan, Jim Gault, Gill Keith, Tom Killin, Angie Malone, Robert McPherson, Aileen Neilson

These selections are valid from 1 May 2013 to 31 July 2014. The RCCC have the list here along with links to information about the programmes.

2013-14 Royal Club Academy Programme

WOMEN (Gold)
Gina Aitken, Naomi Brown, Rowena Kerr, Katy Richardson

WOMEN (Silver)
Hailey Duff, Ellie Fraser, Sophie Jackson, Jodie Milroy, Heather Morton, Katie Murray, Laura Ritchie, Maggie Wilson, Alison Wood, Lesley Young

MEN (Gold)
Angus Dowell, Duncan Menzies, Bruce Mouat, Derek Sloan

MEN (Silver)
Robin Brydone, Gregor Cannon, James Carswell, Ross Fraser, Calum Greenwood, Thomas Halder, Alasdair Schreiber, Stuart Taylor

The RCCC page announcing these selections is here.

2013 Winter University Games Team Nominations

Women – Hannah Fleming, Lauren Gray, Jennifer Dodds, Abi Brown, Alice Spence

Men – Kyle Smith, Thomas Muirhead, Kyle Waddell, Cameron Smith, Grant Hardie

More details about the Unviersity Games and the team chosen are here.

Loose Ends – 8 May

Seeing as the season has come to an end, you can expect less frequent posts from me – I hope to have something up once a week just to keep things ticking over because there is always news even in the close-season.

In the near future I plan to have a month-by-month review of the 2012-13 season online for you to enjoy as well as a look ahead to next season.

For now, here’s what has been going on in the last week or so.

Robin Copland has a new post on his curling comment blog about young curlers balancing our sport with studying. Have a read here.

The organising committee for the 2014 World Mixed Doubles and World Senior Curling Championships are hosting a volunteer open day at Dumfries Ice Bowl this Saturday. If you want to get involved with these two big events that are coming to Scotland next year then this is your chance. Full details are here.

It may be five years until Pyeongchang, South Korea hosts the 2018 Winter Olympics but they have just released the official event logo – it features a minimalist design incorporating the Olympic colours and you can take a look here.

Finally, the Curling History Blog has a new post about the origins of the World Junior Curling Championships. Take a look at this informative article here.