Sunday, April 8, 2012

Sturling & End of Season

I bring you my end of season entry of my blog to share some thoughts of the year. This has definitely been a season of change for me personally. I moved away from home for the first time and hopefully the last time, only to move back to Winnipeg a few months later. I now live with other family as I try to find my way in life. Things always sort themselves out so I am not worried. Now to the Curling.

As I mentioned it was a season of change for me and curling was included. Mentally it has taken me a long time to get over the disappointment of failing to represent Manitoba at the National Juniors some 7 years ago. Some of you who read this may think 7 years is a long time to get over failure and I am inclined to agree with you. I don't know why it has taken so long but I think the return of the Winnipeg Jets has something to do with the solution. Last May I was in Las Vegas when the announcement of the NHL coming back to Winnipeg was made. Seeing the passion in eyes of Winnipeggers during the summer to the lead-up of the home opener really touched home with me. One thing people will tell you about me is that I am very passionate and patriotic. The return of the Jets helped rekindle my passion for curling but it took some time to realize.

I had a very frustrating curling season in terms of success but will continue to chase my dreams but I must put a better effort away from the ice. But during a game a few weeks ago with my team at the Fort Rouge Curling Club I realized it is not about success or failure. It is about who you do it with and the camaraderie you share in that journey. That team that I curl with will probably never win the Brier because that is not our goal. Our goal is simply to curl together and enjoy each others' company. The success will come but you cannot force it. I have been too wrapped up in the competitive side of the game to take sometime to enjoy it.

I want to thank Ernie, Peter, Garth and the rest of the Manitoba Stick Curling Association hosting a great event a couple of weeks ago with the 2012 Manitoba Open Stick Curling Championship. My aunt Connie Fennell and I entered into the championship a few weeks prior after I saw a poster for the event. Connie blew her knee out a few years back and has been using a stick to curl with for a few seasons. The opportunities for us to curl together have been few and far between. If I were to thank anyone other than my mom that got me into curling it would be my aunt Connie. Thanks Connie!!! Connie will be retiring from curling most likely after this year so this bonspiel was the perfect chance to curl with her in something we both could enjoy together. You may be asking how do only two people curl in a bonspiel? Well, for the most part across the country stick curling is played in a doubles format. The rules are fairly similar to traditional curling with a few exceptions: 6 rocks, 6 ends, 3 rock free rule(I'll explain in a second) and no sweeping in between hoglines. One member per team throws from each end. So teammate 1 throws rocks in ends 1,3,5 and teammate 2 throws ends 2,4,6. My aunt and I finished the event with a record of 7-2 bowing out in the quarter-finals. I got to meet some great people and I found the transition from sliding to using a stick quite natural. I encourage everyone to go out and try Sturling as some of them say it. You can visit
for more information

As the season winds down I would like to congratulate all the winners at national championships this year. It feels like Alberta won almost everything doesn't it. As well as a bonus congratulations for Glenn Howard and his rink of Wayne Middaugh, Brent Laing and Craig Savill for their victory today over Scotland to win the 2012 World Championships. Good luck all the teams competing at the Players' Championship next week.

Resby Coutts and I will have one final Rock Talk this curling season this Wednesday April 11th at 7pm CST on TSN 1290. We will be joined by Shane Ray of CurlManitoba and Paul Wiecek of the Winnipeg Free Press to wrap up another great curling season. That's all I got for you right now but I promise to myself to update this blog more often next curling season. If you would like to get in touch with me you can reach me on twitter: @ShaneOJak

Until next time, have a good one.


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