I would imagine that some of the biggest smiles at the Ford World Women's Curling Championship in Swift Current tonight are in the Latvian camp. That's coach Brian Gray with skip Iveta Stasa-Sarsune, third Una Grava-Germane, second Ieva Krusta, lead Zanda Bikse
and alternate Dace Munca. The team won their game on Sunday afternoon against the USA. Latvia has never competed in the Worlds before, and Iveta and her team qualified for the top ten at the Europeans in Aberdeen, winning the B Division and then the World Challenge against Finland. Now they have won their very first game ever at a world championship!
Members of the Reform Curling Club, who visited Riga earlier this season, might like to think it was the practice they provided for the girls then that was the contributory factor. Perhaps, but most likely not. Anyway, this is a day that should bring a smile to the faces of all Latvian curlers. There's not that many of them! And I'm delighted for them all.
Anyway, what else made me smile a half a world away from Swift Current? If you have been following the continuing saga of The Norwegian Olympic Curling Team's Pants, whose Facebook page here now has 640,559 fans, you may already have seen the photo below.
The Norwegian team and coach wore colourful kit for the opening party at the Ford Worlds! I suspect that Loudmouth Golf is the main sponsor of the Norwegian Curling Association. If they're not, they should be. (And the company now has a curling pic on their website home page). See here for a great pic of Thomas Ulsrud and team.
Even some Canadian supporters have jumped on to the trend! Makes me smile. More, more.
Anyway, results and linescores from the actual event can all be found here.
Thanks to Hugh Stewart for the top pic and the one above. The Norwegian photo is from the Norwegian Association website here.