USA Curling Tapas for May 12

USA Curling Tapas for May 12

May 12, 2017 - 8:52am -- Doug Potter

What happened in the previous two weeks:


  • Announcements are expected to be made later today regarding both the completed field for the 2018 U.S. Olympic Team Trials (men’s and women’s), and the host site for the 2018 U.S. Olympic Mixed Doubles Team Trials.
  • Read the Olympic dream perspective from USA Curling high performance program curler Jamie Sinclair.
  • Check out the Salute to Champions put together by Terry Davis on sway.

Competitive Programs

  • The U.S. Olympic Trials Discretionary Selection Committee met for a second time this week, and arrived at final decisions for discretionary teams for the men’s and women’s Trials.
  • Athlete surveys are underway for both the Olympic and Paralympic programs, and the Olympic program staff survey has also begun. A Paralympic staff survey is pending completion.
  • USA’s Becca and Matt Hamilton lost their first round of 16 game in the 2017 World Mixed Doubles Curling Championship, which eliminated them from the medal rounds, but they fought through the remaining qualification games to finish 10th overall and secure USA’s berth in the 2018 Olympics. Only USA, Canada and Switzerland have qualified so far for the Olympics in all three disciplines (mixed doubles, women’s and men’s team competition).
  • Three USA Curling High Performance Program teams were in camp May 5-7 at the U.S. Olympic Training Site in Blaine, Minn., where they also underwent medical assessments with Mayo Clinic Sports Medicine, a supporting sponsor.
  • The HPP team led by Jamie Sinclair won a tiebreaker to reach the quarterfinals of the Grand Slam Humpty Champions Cup, but lost in that round to Switzerland’s Alina Paetz team. The HPP team skipped by John Shuster lost a tiebreaker for the playoffs.
  • Derek Brown, Rich Lepping and I were in Colorado Springs on May 2 to present the 2017-18 High Performance Plan and resource allocation request to the U.S. Olympic Committee. Dean Gemmell also participated by phone.

Inside the curling world                                      

  • June 2 is the application deadline for the 2017-18 Darwin Curtis Fund Grant Program, in which $25,000 is available for growth/development and bricks & mortar initiatives.
  • There are only a few seats left for the June 3-4 Business of Curling Symposium in Bridgeport, Conn. Registration is also open for the July 29-30 Business of Curling Symposium in Bowling Green, Ohio. In addition to discussions about recruiting, retention, and volunteerism, the July course will feature a presentation from the Bowling Green CC about how they successfully opened a new curling facility this season.
  • Many clubs are currently holding elections for board positions for the 2017-18 season. In order to keep our e-mail lists up-to-date and for inclusion in the 2017-18 Media Guide & Directory, we are asking for clubs to fill out the online form, which also includes reporting bonspiel dates and club recruiting events for us to post on the USA Curling website.
  • Roger Smith has been elected as the new USCA Director from the Dakotas Region.
  • Chairman Rich Lepping, Junior HPP Director Dave Jensen and I hosted a Town Hall call on May 3.

Events/Sport Education

  • Nicole Merrifield and her Oklahoma Curling Club teammates won the women’s 2017 UA Curling National Championship, while the men’s title was claimed by the Curling Club of Houston team skipped by Christopher Doremus.
  • USA’s Patti Lank team finished fourth in the 2017 World Senior Curling Championship.
  • Registration closes on Monday for a Level II Instructor course will be held May 20 at Dakota Curling in Lakeville, Minn. Registration is also ongoing for a Level II instructor course set for June 10 at the Coyotes Curling Club in Tempe, Ariz.
  • The College Curling Committee welcomed several new members, including Andrew Willis of the Broomstones Curling Club, and three student representatives will join the committee for one-year terms: Megan Banaski (Wisconsin-Stevens Point), Casey Cascio (Oklahoma), and Michael Parker (Yale – returning student rep).
  • The Arena Committee is currently surveying all participants in the 2017 Men’s and Women’s Arena Nationals, and will meet June 1 to review survey results.


  • The announcement of applications being accepted for the position of USCA Controller was made earlier this week, and has been posted on numerous local, regional and national job sites.
  • The U.S. Olympic Trials Discretionary Selection Committee met for a second time this week, and arrived at final decisions for discretionary teams for the men’s and women’s Trials.

Grants/Sponsorship/Revenue Development

  • We have been awarded a $27,000 state tourism grant toward hosting the 2018 U.S. Olympic Mixed Doubles Team Trials.
  • Kim Nawyn submitted the final report to the World Curling Federation for the 2016-17 Development Assistance Program $12,000 grant. Among other things, the grant was used to purchase an Open House Kit (includes used stones and other curling equipment) to help groups without access to stones garner interest in their communities.
  • On May 2 I joined representatives from the World Curling Federation and NBC at a site visit in Omaha for both Curling Night in America and the 2018 U.S. Olympic Team Trials. While there, Warren Hansen and I met with Omaha Sports Commission representatives to review the status of current sponsorships and new opportunities for both of these events.

What’s up next week:

  • Third quarter report due Monday for USOC Performance Partnership Agreement and Resource Allocation.
  • Annual 990 forms due Monday.
  • USCA Operations Group teleconference, Tuesday.
  • Chairman Lepping and I will be attending the GNCC Regional Meeting and 150th anniversary celebration, May 19-21, Nashua, N.H.

What’s coming two weeks from now (May 21 – 27, 2017):

  • USCA Officiating Advisory Group meeting, May 22.
  • First planning teleconference for 2017 Hawaii Charity Classic, May 23.

Rick Patzke, USA Curling

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