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Thursday, January 28, 2010

Mixed Doubles bits and pieces

You will remember that Logan Gray and Rachael Simms won the Scottish Mixed Doubles Championship back in October (see here) and with that victory the right to represent Scotland at the World Mixed Doubles Championship in Chelyabinsk, Russia, April 16-24. Rachael has made the decision not to go to the Worlds, and Logan has recruited, with the Royal Club's blessing, Kay Adams (pictured above) as the other half of his team.

Logan won the Mixed Doubles title before in 2007, with Kelly Wood. When Kelly was not allowed to play in Vierumaki because of her other commitments, Logan stood down too, and the runners-up went in their stead. This time Logan gets to don a Scottish uniform. Kay will be a good partner. She competed in this season's MDs championship with David Soutar, reaching the quarterfinals.

Both Kay and Logan are excited about the prospect of playing in the world event and are currently getting travel arrangements sorted out, and looking for sponsorship. It will not be a cheap trip, even with Royal Club support! The World Mixed Doubles will run alongside the World Seniors. The website for the events has been set up here, although it is only partly active.

Twenty-six countries will take part, and the draw is available for download here. Scotland is in a group of eight with Canada (who again have not held a mixed doubles championship and will send part of a mixed team), China, and the home nation Russia.

It's quite difficult to find good information about the venue, but I was able to source these pics of the Uralskaya Molinya Ice Palace, from this Russian language website here.

It is one of the largest ice rinks in the world apparently.

There is room for a full size hockey pad in the centre, with a speed skating track around the outside.

All with room to spare. There will be no problem in setting out rinks for the Mixed Doubles and Seniors competitions side by side in such a huge rink.

As a child of the cold war, I really cannot get my mind around the very fact that world curling events are about to be held in Russia. It's just wonderful really, and I wish everyone involved success in making it all happen!

While I'm talking about Mixed Doubles, I have to mention the efforts of my Latvian friends who have decided to host a mixed doubles event. A general invitation has been sent out by the Latvian Curling Association and the Riga Curling Hall for the 'Latvian mixed doubles curling cup 2010'.

The competition will take a place in the newly built curling two sheeter in Riga (photo below), April 2-4, 2010. Interested? Here are the details.

Dates: 2-4 April, 2010 (games starts 2 April evening 18:00).
Place: Riga Curling Hall, www.kerlingahalle.lv
Address: Biń∑ernieku street 121H, Riga, Latvia, LV-1021
Number of teams: 12
Entry fee: 150 EUR (including dinner at Sunday night, 4th April)
Entry deadline: 15th March, 2010

Contact and information may be obtained from Karlis Smilga, whose email is:
president /at/ curling.lv

I wish Karlis and his colleagues every success in getting the competition off the ground. Note too the similar event in Budapest, Hungary, in March, see here.


This pic of the outside of the two sheet rink in Riga is by Bob. More here.