Friday, March 16, 2012

Rock Stars: Lethbridge

Image via World Curling Federation

I know you've all been wondering when I was going to back to curling, already! Well, wonder no longer. The 2012 Ford World Women's Curling Championship gets underway on Saturday in Lethridge, Alberta. As far as I know there is no US television coverage but please let me know if you've heard otherwise. TSN is having online streaming but only on weekdays during the day and experience has taught me that the Canadian channels don't always stream in the States. Even so, I'm excited. In addition to offering its own spoils, this is the first tournament to have any bearing on qualification for the 2014 Olympics. Here's a quick rundown of the prime contenders.


In any international curling tournament, Canada is always among the favorites. This year's representatives will have extra incentive for a strong showing as the host nation. Heather Nedohin's rink (team) hails from Edmonton so they've got provincial pride on the line as well. This is Nedohin's second World Championship appearance though her first in 14 years and her first as skip.

Photo via Saville Centre


The only curler in this year's tournament to skip a world champion before is China's Wang Bingyu. Bingyu won her world title in 2009. She and her rink won bronze at last year's tournament and also at the 2010 Olympics.



While curling is far more popular in Canada than it is anywhere else, the game was born in Scotland. Eve Muirhead's rink is the reigning European champion. Only 21 years old, Muirhead already has a very impressive resume: a silver medal at the 2010 World Championships and four golds at the junior worlds.



Allison Pottinger, skip of the St. Paul-based American squad is a former world champion, having served as third for Debbie McCormick's rink in 2003. She also has three career silver medals at the World Championship, though she has never skipped a team at this level before. She has a very practical day job: marketing research analyst.

Photo via Twin Cities Business Magazine


The Swedes are the defending champion, though there was a bit of a coup at the Swedish national championship. Margaretha Sigfridsson and her crew bested the legendary Anette Norberg (2 Olympic golds, 3 World Championship golds) to earn the trip to Alberta. Whereas most skips play fourth position, thus throwing last rocks, Sigfridsson serves as lead , throwing first.

Photo via Team AllTelle


German prospects dimmed considerably when skip Andrea Schöpp broke her leg in practice this week. Schöpp, a university statistics lecturer in her spare time, is a two-time world champion and she will be missed. As yet, a skip for the tournament has not been named, though Melanie Robillard will take over Schöpp's fourth spot.

The Pick

Sure, why not...

Gold: China
Silver: Canada
Bronze: Scotland


  1. I enjoy watching curling during the Olympics, but I don't know that my interest will ever go beyond that.

    Good luck with A-Z.

  2. Watching a curling match has to be one of the funniest things ever. Sometimes there's a team practicing at the mall's ice rink, and it just cracks me up to see the guys ferociously wiping the floor in front of the rock.

  3. Congratulations! You have won the Versatile Blogger Award! Please stop by my blog, Feed Me A Stray Cat!, to pick it up. (I found you through the A-Z Challenge.)

  4. If curling is REALLY as ubiquitous in Canada as bowling is here, then we SHALL have to make a weekend out of it....

  5. Uumm, judging by photo alone [no further stats or information] my vote was on Ms. China.
    SHe looks into it in a selfless aloof way. Maybe since I am sports-chalenged, I make up these whimsical ways I identify athletes... but curling??? The name confused me...
    {I also found you on A to Z}

    See ya,
    Violet @ Revolution ~ Evolution

  6. I had watched curling and had laughed, thinking "how easy!" But, now I realize that it is not easy. More respect for those women on the ice, so patient.