Twenty-five-year old Jonny Harper from Belfast could be the first of a new breed of Irish curlers after taking the ferry over on Monday to try curling at Stranraer Ice Rink.
Inspired by the recent Olympics, youth-worker Jonny had a day off and decided to give curling a go after seeing the free ‘Try Curling’ sessions at Stranraer advertised on the ICA website.
A natural sportsman (he plays hockey) Jonny arrived off the morning ferry and got a bus from the terminal into the town . After arriving at the rink, he picked the basics up quickly after some coaching from ice rink manager Gail Munro and qualified coach Trevor Harrison. As the ice wasn’t busy, Jonny had the rink to himself to hone his newly acquired skills. Later he was joined by ICA President PJ Wilson and Louise Kerr who spent some time with him on the ice, helping with delivery tips and sweeping advice and filling him in on some ICA history.
But as you can see from the attached video clip, Jonny picked things up really quickly, developing an impressive slide in just a couple of hours.
Before heading home on the afternoon boat, PJ invited Jonny to the closing bonspiel at Hamilton and Jonny promised to bring the rest of the hockey team with him next time!