1st World Wheelchair Curling Championships
The 1st World Cup Bonspiel for Wheelchair Curling took place in Crans Montana, Switzerland in January 2000. 3 teams took part, 2 from Switzerland and 1 from Sweden. This event was organised to coincide with the World Hand Ski Championships which was taking place at the same venue. This Bonspiel brought wheelchair curling which had only recently been introduced in the 2 countries participating to the limelight and was thoroughly enjoyed by everyone including delegates from the International Paralympic Committee and the European Paralympic Committee present for the World Handi Ski Championship. A seminar was held at the close of the bonspiel with input from the athletes and representatives of the WCF and rules were formulated for the game of wheelchair curling.
The 2nd World Cup Bonspiel took place in Sursee, Switzerland in January 2001 where 6 countries took part. Denmark, Italy, France, Scotland, Sweden and Switzerland. As this was a new venture for these competing nations wheelchair curlers from Switzerland were able to assist some of the nations in the make up of their team. The Bonspiel was a great success with the eventual winners being Denmark. Throughout the week seminars were held with the athletes and representatives from WCF to once more discuss the rules and participation.
Discussion on Curling for the disabled had been discussed on several occasions at the meetings of the World Curling Federation and in September 2000 at the Executive Meeting of the WCF, Kate Caithness was appointed Disabled Project Leader.
It was agreed at the Annual General Assembly of the WCF in April 2001 in Lausanne that the 1st World Wheelchair Curling Championship will be held in Sursee, Switzerland, 21st-26th January2001. To date there are 8 countries participating - Canada, Denmark, England, Italy, Scotland, Sweden, Switzerland and USA. The Championship will take the form of a round robin with semi finals and final.
As this is the 1st World Wheelchair Curling Championship we are encouraging as many nations as possible to participate. Therefore anyone who is a wheelchair user- paraplegics, tetraplegics, sufferers from cerebral palsy and multiple sclerosis will be eligible. A Seminar will be held on the Friday of the Championship where a representative from each participating nation will be invited to discuss eligibility for future events.
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