For immediate release: 14 February 2012
Chuncheon, South Korea – Play begins at the World Wheelchair Curling Championship 2012 on Sunday the 19th of February at the Uiam Ice Rink in Chuncheon, South Korea.
Ten mixed national teams will compete in the event which is the second opportunity for the world’s top wheelchair curling teams to gather points for their nations to qualify for the 2014 Paralympic Winter Games in Sochi, Russia.
Reigning world champions, Canada, who won the Gold in Prague last year, return to defend their title with Skip Jim Armstrong and his Vancouver 2010 Paralympic Gold medal winning line up.
Scotland’s Aileen Neilson, the only female skip in the field, will be hoping that her team can go one better than the silver medal they took last year after losing to Canada in final.
And Norway’s Rune Lorentsen, whose team won Bronze in 2011, is back as are their bronze medal game opponents from last year – the Russian team skipped by Andrey Smirnov.
The other six teams are China (Skip Haito Wang), Korea (Skip Hak-Sung Kim who led Korea to Paralympic silver in Vancouver in 2010), USA (with Patrick McDonald as Skip) and Sweden (with Jalle Jungnell returning as Skip after he coached the Swedes in Prague last year).
Italy (skipped by Andrea Tabanelli) and Slovakia (skipped by Radoslav Duris) are the two teams who made it to this year’s World Championship after qualifying out of the World Wheelchair Curling Qualifier event in Lohja, Finland, last November.
The ten teams will compete in a round robin which runs from Sunday to Thursday 23rd February. Semifinals take place on Friday 24th with the Bronze and Gold medal games scheduled for 10:00 and 14:00 local time (KST – Korean Standard Time) on Saturday 25th.
Wheelchair curling is similar in many ways to its able-bodied parent game, except that no sweeping takes place, and each game consists of eight instead of ten ends.
Further qualification points for the 2014 Winter Paralympic Games in Sochi, Russia will be awarded at the end of this year’s world championship based on the final ranking.
Results, news and photos from the World Wheelchair Curling Championship 2012 can be seen here on the event website: http://www.wwhcc2012.curlingevents.com,
[We here at the blog will also have full coverage and maybe even a few inside stories]
The 2012 World Wheelchair Curling Championship is the third World Curling Federation world championship event to be staged in Korea after the Mount Titlis World Women’s Curling Championship 2009 in Gangneung and the World Junior Curling Championships in 2006 in Jeonju.
In 2013, the World Wheelchair Curling Championship will take place in Sochi, Russia from 16-23 February.