Team GB’s men are guaranteed a medal in the Winter Olympics curling final today, but which colour will it be? Former British curler and BBC commentator Jackie Lockhart reveals the secret to success on the Sochi ice.
Easy does it
“People think they have to throw the stone as hard as they can. You need to do the opposite and give it just a gentle push, because the ice is incredibly fast. A lovely slow delicate release is what’s required.
“The only time to play a harder shot is when you’re trying to move 2 or 3 stones from the circle. That’s what’s known as a strike weight. But generally, less is more.”
“Brushing the ice in front of the stone is called sweeping and by softening the surface of the ice, will help the stone travel further. It’s been proven that you can take a stone a further 6 feet if you’re sweeping hard enough. It also helps hold the stone to a straighter line.”
Skip to the win
“All the direction comes from the skipper – for Britain that’s David Murdoch. The skips watch the stone and, having read the ice, they know what the conditions are like and so will call when to sweep and when not to.
“They’re the strategists who can decide whether a game is won or lost so there’s huge pressure on them.”
Learn from the man himself
Watch Team GB’s curling king David Murdoch explain the rules of curling and how he got into the sport: