Friday, July 05, 2019

An American Curling Story

If you have any doubts about the effect that winning Olympic Gold Medals has on the perception of the sport by the general public, you could ask Rhona Martin or any of her GB team which won back in 2002. Or you could watch Making Curling Great Again - An American Curling Story, a short documentary which is just out, following the success of John Shuster's US team in Pyeongchang last year.

The film, on YouTube here, is directed by Jesse Wachter, and is a fascinating 28 minutes to enjoy. CurlingZone's Gerry Geurts is the Executive Producer. Presented by Dynasty Curling Ltd, and Annex Media, the film covers the history of curling in America, and then the story of the Shuster team.

Perhaps I'm biased, having experienced the warm and welcoming nature of club curling in America many years ago, and even having played in Hibbing where John Shuster caught the curling bug. This is a feel-good video about the sport, and the positive effect the gold medals have had in promoting the growth and awareness of curling in the USA. It's not triumphalist, as might have been expected. I loved it.

The film includes a collage of videos of the sport being played in the past. There's some wonderful old film footage (screenshot above of an 'oops' moment), and photographs. The interviews with the team members are revealing too, as are the comments about how the sport fits in in these divisive times in the USA. Even the Simpsons get a mention, and the closing credits are to the classic Cheetos 'Teach me how to curl' commercial.

Do watch it!

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