I think it probably safe to reveal some of the secrets behind the Scottish squad's strong performance at the Four Nations this weekend. I have been so impressed by the serious attitude of all the players, very much aware of the responsibilities on their shoulders that come with representing your country. The photo above captures one of the many tactics and sports psychology sessions attended rigorously by the Scots.
Which takes us swiftly on to the Saturday evening dinner and dance in the Royal Wells Hotel. Mine Host was Alison Arthur, English Curling Association President. At her side is Councillor Alex King who is Deputy Leader of Kent County Council. He welcomed all the visitors and said something which really has stuck in my mind tonight, "Sport is all about the friends you make."
That is certainly true!
Of course, the boys brushed up well for the occasion.
As did the ladies. Catriona Cooper won the 'Blonde of the Day' award. There was talk that she could be the 'Face' of the blog and we could launch a new range of fragrances, specifically for curlers, to help raise funds. 'Eau du changing room', 'Broom dust', 'White Ice', and a special 'Pick Up' unisex aftershave lotion.
I think the idea has potential ....
... Michael McCreadie chairs the advisory committee which has already met to work out the marketing strategy.
Meanwhile, back at the dinner, the food was great. John Brown is saying, "May I have more?"
Mel Porter meanwhile was on her seconds..., or it might have been thirds!
I thought this was a nice touch, the Scots had brought flowers for the three ladies who had made us all so welcome at Fenton's - Sandra Moorcoroft, Alison Arthur and Susan Young. Good to see Susan again. She was a founder member of the Alternative Curling Club which celebrated its twenty-fifth birthday recently, see here.
There were four short speeches by representatives of the Four Nations. John Jo Kenny spoke for Ireland, Alison Arthur for the ECA, Andrew Tanner for the Welsh and Graeme Maguire for the Scots.
The Band of Two hit all the right notes, in the right order, and their caller taught us local dances.
Including this one about Auntie Mary's canary!
Needless to say, first on the floor was Stewart Sutherland with Alison Arthur.
Great night, great company.
Pics © Skip Cottage. Many withheld by request!