A small but select field contested Maniototo Curling International's season-opening tournament last weekend.
Rink manager Ewan Kirk said the six Open Doubles teams were mainly composed of former or current national representatives from both sides of the Tasman.
The tournament was played under Mixed Doubles rules – apart from the make-up of the sides. Teams could be composed of 2 men or 2 women or be mixed.
It proved a good workout for the New Zealand team heading to April's World Mixed Doubles Championship in Turkey. John and Natalie Campbell finished as runners-up to the Australian pair of Hugh Millikin and Ian Palangio.
MCI Open Doubles – and a movie
New Zealand's first curling tournament for the 2012 season will be MCI Naseby's Open Doubles tournament on 17th and 18th March.
An exclusive screening of the film "Gone Curling" featuring Naseby and the Baxter Cup will also be a feature of the weekend.
The tournament will be played under Mixed Doubles rules, although teams do not need to be mixed (i.e. 2 men or 2 women is fine).
Entries are open now and are welcome – contact the Naseby rink for details. Please register even if you don't have a playing partner and the rink will find one for you. A Friday start for a few teams may be required, but this is unlikely.
This tournament will also be a fundraiser to help the Doubles team of John and Natalie Campbell get to the World Mixed Doubles Tournament in Turkey this year. The cost of the tournament is $50 per person.
"Gone Curling" exclusive screening
The film which was made by Roland Kahurungi and Rachael Patching as part of their Masters in Science Communication and Natural History Film Making, a masters program through the University of Otago and Natural History New Zealand, and is 25 minutes long.
It will be screened in conjunction with the Doubles Tournament at the MCI Lounge on Saturday 17th March at 7.30pm. The cost will be $15 per head which includes a light supper. Of that $10 will be going towards a fundraiser to take the documentary to the Edinburgh Film Festival. It is hoped this evening will be well supported by curlers and any others interested. Please ring or email the rink and book your seat as space is limited – you do not need to be competing at the Mixed Doubles. A cash bar will be operating.
"Gone Curling" Synopsis
In the deep south of New Zealand – Central Otago is the last place in the world that still upholds the traditions of outdoor curling. At its heart is Naseby, a town of character and community, bound together by their love of curling. They hunger for hard frosts and freezing lakes but their passion for ice is now being tested... A changing climate means that curling outdoors may soon become a thing of the past and these passionate curlers may never again be able to compete for New Zealand's oldest sporting trophy - the Baxter's Cup.