Wednesday, 12 April 2017

C&B Juniors to the Fore Again!

Many thanks to Andrew Barr - both for his ongoing commitment to the Gogar junior curling programme and also for his comprehensive report on the junior members' successes in the second half of the 2016-17 season.  Here is Andrew's report.

First off, Kirsty Barr and Emma Barr won the low road of the Forfar U17 slam event between Christmas and New Year, playing as team mates in Team Davie.

Laura Barr joined team Jackson (and followed in the footsteps of her Aunt Kerry!) as 5th player and supported the team to a Gold Medal in the World Junior B Curling Championships in Ostersund Sweden.  The pressure was on team Jackson as they had to get a top 3 finish to guarantee Scotland a place in the A division of the World Junior Curling Championships in February.  The Gold medal was the icing on the cake!

Laura is a member of team Aitken - the "Aitken" being none other than our own Karina!  They had a great Scottish Junior Championship, ultimately losing out at an extra end to team Jackson in the final.  The team then went on to compete in the Scottish Ladies Curling Championship, though without Laura, who was on "5th person" duty at the World Junior Championship; they had a fantastic week again and narrowly missed out on a semi-final spot.

Kirsty Barr and Emma Barr, playing in team Davie, also had a great Scottish Junior Championship, winning their first four games to qualify for the 1v2 page play-off game against team Jackson.  Sadly for them, they lost that game and then the semi-final against Laura and Karina.

Jane Barr was 5th player for team Dandie in the competition.

In the Scottish Junior Men's Championship, Gavin Barr played in team Baird and lost out in a play-off for a semi-final spot in the competition.  Gavin also competed in the Scottish Men's Curling Championships, this time in Team Taylor- a fantastic experience for him.

Laura reprised her fifth player role for team Jackson, this time in the World Junior Curling Championships in South Korea.  Team Scotland had a great week, reaching the final but losing out to Sweden and therefore having to be content with Silver Medals.  Well done, Laura!

Team Jackson show off their Silver Medals after the final of the World Junior Ladies Curling Championship
from left: Cate Brewster (coach), Laura Barr (fifth player), Sophie Sinclair (lead), Mili Smith (second),
Naomi Brown (vice) and Sophie Jackson (skip)
In other news, the cousins Barr, Kirsty and Emma lost out in the low road semi-final at the Perth under 17s, were runners-up in the Stirling Super League division 2 and won the Anna Smith ladies league at the Peak.

Gavin, Laura, Karina, Kirsty and Emma took part in the Scottish Junior Mixed Doubles Championship, a new junior tournament at Braehead designed to give junior curlers exposure to the new Olympic discipline of mixed doubles curling.  Kirsty progressed furthest in the competition, missing out on a semi-final spot by an annoying one end.

Finally, the Murrayfield curling season was extended by a few days to allow Gogar Park Young Curlers to host the International Junior Club Curling Bonspiel.  The event had a local organising committee, including C&B members Jenny Barr (event manager/ secretary/ treasurer and queen of the excel spreadsheet!), John Steven (opening and closing ceremonies), Andrew Barr (chairman and ice king operator) and Colin Campbell (match programme - excellent job, Colin!).  Margaret Nicol gave invaluable fundraising support, and Anne and Richie Anderson, together with Rebecca Steven gave John help and support with the opening and closing ceremonies.

Onto the curling competition itself and the great news is that a GPYC team won the A division of the competition.  The team was Adam Keron, Holly Davis and the Barr duet of Kirsty and Emma.

Kirsty and Emma are in the centre of the back row during the
colourful closing ceremony, organised by C&B's own John Steven!
Well done all on a great curling season.  Andrew reports that the pressure is already on for season 2017-18 with Royal Caledonian Curling Club applications already open for the new season's academy places.

All to play for again, it would seem.