The picturesque Bavarian town of Füssen is an ideal venue for a European Championship. Access from hotels or apartments to the curling rinks is a manageable walking distance in order to work up an appetite for generous portions of delicious Le Gruyère Cheese which was much in evidence throughout this event.
It was indeed a pleasure to wander through the “old town” unheeded by traffic and not having one’s eardrums assaulted by unending canned music, but rather to be able to enjoy the sweet refrains of the street musicians’ live music and to enjoy the individuality of small shops and cafes.
The main arena wherein played the A section was bright and welcoming with plenty of atmosphere created by the supporters.
The teams on the ice enhanced the colourful spectacle attired in their associations’ colours; although this was not reflected at the closing ceremony when a number of teams could not be bothered to wear the full regulation uniform, showing discourtesy to both the organising committee and the sponsor, Le Gruyère.
The B Ice Hall was somewhat austere in comparison and there were some remarks made regarding the matched quality of the stones and the length of time taken by some teams to complete a game. However, the newer associations were to be commended on the improved shot making abilities which they displayed.
It was a pity that the more vocal supporters were denied the opportunity of facing the winning teams when the medals were presented, no doubt this procedure was dictated by T.V. whose presentation of the sport was superb. Indeed one of the highlights of the week, for those who had the opportunity, was to view the inside of the pantechnicon which houses the unbelievable tangle of wires, levers, monitors and buttons by which the very professional projection of the sport appears on our T.V.’s.
For those who had the time and the stamina, a visit to the Hohenschwangau and Neuschwanstein castles was a must, and the Füssen Hertitage Museum’s display of musical instruments is a reminder of how the musical tradition is still enjoyed in the wonderful Prince’s Hall.
There were certain controversial issues which arose during the championship which will need to be addressed but that should not detract from the Host committee’s hard work, the spectacular display of fireworks and operatic entertainment at the closing banquet, the inspirational play of the teams, the continuing support of the event sponsor Le Gruyère AOC and those who worked quietly behind the scenes.
Congratulations to all the Medal winners, you were a joy to watch, thank you all competing teams and long may the traditional curling spirit prevail.
Men’s “A” Divison Gold ScotlandSilver NorwayBronze Denmark
Women’s “A” Division Gold SwedenSilver ScotlandBronze Denmark
Men’s “B” Division Gold * IrelandSilver * SpainBronze Latvia
Women’s “B” Division Gold * EnglandSilver * NetherlandsBronze France.
* promoted to the “A” Section positions 9and10.