We competed our first of the Champions Tour event of the season in Oslo on 22-25 October. The event was held in the Snaroya Ice Hall in somepart of Oslo. John, Scott and Colin heading out on the Wednesday via Amsterdam with Greig and David coming out on Thursday via Stavanger.
We had two short practice sessions in Oslo before the tournament started on the Wednesday night and the Thursday morning along with a lot of other foreign teams. Dave and Greig missed both of these because of their flight times.
Our first game of the weekend was against Kalle Kiiskinen of Finland. The skip was part of the Finnish Olympic team who won Silver in the 2006 Torino Winter Olympics. So he is pretty decent. It was a scrappy game with us giving up a steal of 2 in the 3rd end. We took a 2 in the 6th end and with Kiiskinen flashing an open hit for a blank the 7th, things it started to go quite well. With us 1 up without in the 8th end, Kiiskinen had a difficult hit for 2. After a measure, it ended up with Kiiskinen scoring a 1 and the game going to an extra end. We managed to keep it clear in the final end and took a straightforward point in the extra for the win.
Game No.2 was against Niklas Edin of Sweden. This was going to be a big game. They were favourites to go through top in our group and are one of the best teams in the world. We were forced to 1 in the first end and were extremely lucky for Edin to only score 1 in the second when it was looking like we were going to lose a big end. We had a tough shot in the 3rd for 4 but unfortunately only got 1. Solid 4th end that lead to Edin trying a ridicous runback to prevent losing a 2, which he missed. We then exchanged 2's and played a pretty poor 7th end that gave Edin a difficult double for 3. He missed and conceded the game. A very good game to win early in our season.
For the 3rd game we were on a wild sheet of ice against Thomas Lovold of Norway. Everybody struggled with draw weight in the early stages of the game, but we took a 4 and manged to keep it comfortable until the end.
Last group game was against Bartsch from Hamburg. We ran out to a 6-0 lead after 3 ends and won the game 8-2. Poor ice again but was an alright performance for our only game on the Saturday.
With our team draw shot result of 38cm, we were ranked No.1 of the group winners. We went back to the hotel and let all the teams slog it out in the playoff games to see who we would have in the Quarter Finals.
It turned out we would be playing Tom Brewster. He did quite well last year so we thought it was probably going to be a tough game. It was. We didnt do anything ridiculously bad, we had a few opportunities, but we didnt really take them. They played well and deserved the win. Team Brewster ended up losing the final against Niklas Edin. Because we beat the winners, I am sure that makes us the best somehow? Right? Oh well, it was good. 8000 NOK in the bank.
Much needed money for the European Mixed Curling Championships in Copenhagen which Dave, myself, Kerry Barr and Louise Edwards will be attending next week.
Our next event as a team will be in Champery, Switzerland in the middle of October.
Have a good day,