YOUNG Arbroath curler Ben Bremner had a festive period to remember when he became a Scottish Curling Under-17 Champion.
Ben was part of Team Carswell which took part in the final event in the Under-17 Scottish Junior Slam Competition at Forfar Ice Rink. The Slam Competition is an event run throughout the year and is held at five of the main ice rinks around Scotland - Perth, Lockerbie, Greenacres, Hamilton and Forfar.
Teams are allocated events to participate in and their three best results are counted for their final tally to determine the winner.
In Forfar it all came down to two teams for the overall championship, Team Carswell and Team Cannon.
After the first day both teams had made it through the group stages and were required to play a quarter-final late that evening with both teams again winning through comfortably.
This set up a tense final day as the teams went in to their respective semi-finals knowing they had to match each other’s results. Team Carswell played Team Mouat, last year’s champions in their semi-final and made a good start, stealing two shots in the first end. They then took a single in the next end to lead 3-0.
Team Mouat came back with a two in the third end to close the gap but Team Carswell claimed a one in end four and stole a one in the fifth end to move 5-2 ahead with only one end left.
A solid last end from Team Carswell saw them land two and win comfortably 7-2 to secure their place in the final.
All eyes turned to the adjacent rink as Team Cannon played their last end against Team Hannon. Cannon led 6-4 but missed a crucial take out with their last stone, allowing Team Hannon to draw their last stone into the house for three and a surprise win.
This result guaranteed Team Carswell the overall title regardless of the result in the final. Team Carswell won an excellent final against Team Hannon 9-6 securing the Forfar Slam and becoming the first team to win three slam titles in one season, at Perth, Greenacres and Forfar.
This is made all the more remarkable as the team only received three invites for the five events. They finished with a 100 per cent win ratio in the Slams and only dropped one point through the three competitions, with one tied group match at Forfar.
They are the first team to achieve this undefeated tag in the history of the Slam events. The Team will now travel to Fusen, Germany, in July to represent Scotland in a week-long competition and training camp to take on the world’s best junior curlers. Team Carswell received their trophies from Arbroath curler Duncan Menzies who is team GB skip at The Youth Winter Olympics in Innsbruck.
Team Carswell comprised: lead, Peter Dagen; second. Ben Bremner; third, George McConnell; and skip, James Carswell. Ben’s excellent season continued when he moved up to the under-21 junior level and took part in the Braehead Festive Cup at Braehead arena in Glasgow.
Ben’s Team McConnell made the final against strong favourites Team Marshall but managed to upset the form book and win 7-2. This secured Ben’s fourth title of a fantastic season which is only half finished so more silverware could easily follow.
Ben (17), Bankhead Road, is a member of Letham Grange Curling Club and Forfar Young Curlers where he attends training every Saturday. He is a sixth year pupil at Arbroath High School.