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Curling Legends Podcast

A weekly conversation with the players and storytellers who shaped Curling in the 50s, 60s, 70s, 80s and 90s.
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Now displaying: February, 2017

A weekly conversation with the players and storytellers of the 50s, 60s, 70s, 80s and 90s.

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If you are a curler from years ago and want to share a story from your era, please email me at contact@curlinglegends.ca

Feb 21, 2017
Ron Northcott was Alberta curling in the 1960s.  From 1963 to 1969, Ron (AKA "The Owl") won the Alberta Tankard six times, five as a skip.  He went on to win the Macdonald Brier in three of those appearances, ('66,'68 and '69) following each with a victory at the World Championship, including the first ever Air Canada Silver Broom in 1968.  Those Brier championship rinks each had a different third (George Fink, Jimmy Shields and Dave Gerlach), but the dominant front end of lead Fred Storey and second Bernie Sparkes were there to set up every end and sweep every last rock.  Ron will share his thoughts on some of those great final shots, along with his approach to strategy and early use of the corner guard.  We'll discuss Pee Wee Pickering, Hec Gervais, Ray Kingsmith, Warren Hansen, and Sam Richardson, in likely the greatest Curling Legends example of gamesmanship... in an elevator.
 
For more on Ron Northcott, check out  "The Brier" by Bob Weeks, "Curling: The History, The Players, The Game" by Warren Hansen, and "The Stone Age" by Vera Pezer.  Curling Canada has historical videos from the 1964, 1966, 1967, 1968 and 1969 Macdonald Briers available on YouTube.  Ron is joined on stage by the Richardsons during the World Mens Curling Championship in 2009 (Part 1, Part 2, Part 3 and Part 4).  There's also a short interview with Ron as part of the Alberta Sports Hall of Fame
Feb 13, 2017
Dan Carey didn't think he was too competitive.  Growing up in Winnipeg, he could gauge his drive against older brother Bill, and everything seemed fine. After his hockey aspirations were thwarted by a broken arm, and having seen Bill win a Brier as third for Barry Fry, Dan decided that curling might be the path to feed his hunger for competition.  Following a decade of near misses, Dan re-teamed with Vic Peters in 1991.  Joined by long time playing partner Don Rudd at lead and Vic's teammate Chris Neufeld at second, the Peters Rink stumbled early in the season, but eventually won Manitoba and found themselves in the Labatt Brier final against Russ Howard of Ontario.  Dan shares his thoughts on that game and the strange and unscrupulous happenings from one year later at the 1993 Brier.  He'll explain why the Peters rink often felt labeled as a "black hat" team, and who appeared to wear the white hats. We'll do a deep dive on the 1997 Brier final against Kevin Martin.  Played in the Calgary Saddledome, in front of perhaps the largest crowd in history, the bizarre see-saw game was unlike any before or since.
 
For more on the 1992 and '93 Briers, check out "The Brier" by Bob Weeks.  You can also find more stories of Winnipeg curling in Sean Grassie's "King of the Rings" and "Curling Capital: Winnipeg and the Roarin' Game, 1876 to 1988" by Morris Mott and John Allardyce. 
 
Next Episode: Ron Northcott
Feb 6, 2017
Vera Pezer has always had a mind for curling.  From her early days in Meskanaw, SK, tossing stones on a two sheeter at the age of 6, Vera developed a lifelong passion for the roaring game.  In our conversation, we cover her development at the University of Saskatchewan where she honed her curling skills and her studies, eventually blending the two as part of her PhD in Sports Psychology.  Vera won 4 Canadian Championships as Team Saskatchewan.  First as third for Joyce McKee in 1969, then skipping Sheila Rowan, Joyce, and Lenore Morrison to three consecutive national victories from 1971 to 1973. Vera then stepped back from curling, but eventually found herself working with the CCA, providing a focus on the mental aspects of the game. After the 1992 Winter Olympics, career again pulled her away from the game, but her passions remained and she directed this energy into writing a book "The Stone Age: A Social History of Curling on the Prairies", published in 2003.  She followed up with "Smart Curling: Perfect Your Game Through Mental Training" in 2007.  
 
Vera tells stories from across her curling career including the Canadian Championships (CLCA and Macdonald Lassies), the 1988 Olympic Trials, and shares her thoughts on the modern game.  You'll also hear about her clash with Orest in curling's original "Battle of the Sexes" in 1972.
 
In addition to her own books, you can find out more about Vera Pezer in "Tales of a Curling Hack" by Doug Maxwell, "Curling: The History, The Players, The Game" by Warren Hansen, and "Some outstanding women: they made Saskatoon a better community".
 
Next Episode: Dan Carey
Feb 2, 2017
In Part 2 of my conversation with Matt Baldwin, we'll cover the 1958 Brier in Victoria, where Alberta landed in a playoff against a young Braunstein rink from Manitoba.  Matt will share the disappointment of perhaps his best rink, when in 1960 he teamed with Hector Gervais, and didn't reach the Brier.  You'll hear about Hector, Garnett Campbell, Ernie Richardson, and Matt's confrontation with Paul Gowsell in the finals of the Vernon Carspiel.  Matt tells stories from the 1971 "Blizzard" Brier in Quebec City and explains how to throw a party at the Chateau Frontenac.  And you'll find out why Matt is the original "Hot Shot" of one-on-one curling.
 
Next Episode: Vera Pezer
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