In contrast to some other sports, there is no official 'opening' day to herald a new curling season. So I'm declaring today the start of a new year!
The first Scottish Curler magazine of the new season, to appear early in October, is already on the stocks! So that's keeping me busy. Contributions are always welcome by email or post to Skip Cottage.
Michael Burton, secretary of my mother club, Reform, has emailed members to remind them that the first club games of the season will be on Thursday, September 6, at Greenacres! What a short summer it has been. Mind you, Michael's reminder has probably sent some in a search for their sports kit bag, last seen back in April, to (hopefully not) discover socks therein which have been fermenting away in the dark recesses of the bag! There's going to be a lot of sore bodies in the next week or so as thousands take to the ice again after the summer break.
Our competitive curlers have kept up their training over the summer of course. The Elite Scotland Squad have on-ice training over the next couple of weekends at Aberdeen and Greenacres. Actually, Aberdeen was a hive of activity last weekend as some of the National Academy Squad were put through their paces. Some Regional Academy athletes, young and not-so-young, were also there for, amongst other reasons, a seminar on anti-doping.
But not all in curling is so serious. The North v South Curlathon at Braehead is next week, September 14-15. One of the highlights (and there will be many) of that twenty-four hours is to be a match up of the 2002 Olympic four, skipped by Rhona Martin, against Jackie Lockhart's World Champs from that year!
And talking of Jackie, Miss September in Ana Arce's Fire on Ice team sponsorship calendar, I have had thousands of emails (well, one email) asking me to publish Jackie's picture. If you haven't seen it, you should have bought the calendar! However, here is a taster, the promotional pic (rated 'U') which appears on the calendar's rear cover. Great shot, Jackie!
Chuck Hay - Chuck Hay, legend, died last week, aged 87. That's him in happy times on the hack at the Brora rink. You will find the World Curling Federation's obituar...
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