Like the United States, interest in curling soars in Japan during the Olympics. This interest has reached even greater levels following Japan’s bronze medal performance at the 2018 games. Naoki Iwanaga, a former competitive curler from Japan now living in the US, joins us to talk all things Japanese curling. We discuss the differences in curling culture between Japan and the US. Then, we learn about the growth of the sport in Japan and the need for a dedicated curling facility in Tokyo. He also introduces us to the concept of “沼” (meaning pond or swamp) and how it relates to the increased attention on curling during Team Fujisawa’s games.
For the first time in almost a year we get to talk about major curling events. First, we preview the 2021 Scotties Tournament of Hearts with Jonathan’s 10 things to watch. Then, we preview the Swiss Championships and Japanese Championships and tell you why they’re intriguing this year. Finally, we interject with an update on the cancelation for the Women’s World Curling Championships.
We start by recapping the many national curling championships that just completed, including Scotland, Switzerland, Japan and the US. We finish off by discussing the recent hire of Jeff Plush as the new CEO of USA Curling, hear from some people who know him better than we do and talk about what his success will look like if you’re a club curler.
Toronto curler and Hong Kong men’s skip Jason Chang joins the show to help us preview the 2019 Pacific-Asia Curling Championships. We discuss how he came to represent Hong Kong, the growth of curling in the region and sort out the favorites and sleeper picks for this year’s tournament, taking place Nov. 2-9 in Shenzhen, China.
We take you around the curling world in interviews with Trevor Gau of Triangle Curling Club, Joël Retornaz of Team Italy and J.D. Lind of Team Japan. Find out how Triangle went from curling on hockey ice to their own dedicated facility and the get a taste of the state of the sport in Italy and Japan. Thank you to Trevor, Joël, J.D. and the folks behind the scenes at Curling Night in America, including Terry Davis, Rick Patzke and Price Atkinson for helping make this possible.