For the 8th time in its history, curling is on the program of the Winter Olympics in Beijing. A sport that is sometimes obscure and little publicized. Here are all the rules you need to know to follow the test.
The principle of curling is to place polished granite stones fitted with a handle as close as possible to the center of a target by sliding them on the ice. The throwing partners can sweep the ice in front of the stone to facilitate the glide.
Three events are on the program: a men’s, a women’s, and for the second time a mixed double. The competition will take place from February 2 to 20.
The course of the tests
The men’s and women’s tournaments oppose ten teams who all meet in a single pool. The first four at the end of this group stage go to the semi-finals (1st against 4th – 2nd against 3rd). The mixed tournament welcomes eight teams.
A match opposes two teams of four players, each throwing two stones. A game can have up to ten rounds. In each round, one point is awarded to the team with the stone closest to the center. If a team has several stones closer to the center than the best of the opposing team, it totals as many points as stones. Only stones on the target or touching its outer circle are taken into account. The team with the most points at the end of the 10th round wins the game.
Each player is wearing shoes with a slippery sole at the front and another non-slip at the back. Participants are also provided with a “broom” which allows them to rub and heat the ice to facilitate the sliding of the stone. There are several shapes and sizes.
The stones used are granite from Scotland or Wales. They have a handle and weigh 20 kilos. Regarding the track, it is 45.72m long and 5m wide, while the target, where the stones are sent, is also called “house”.