Team GB has taken a massive blow this week, with wheelchair curling losing its Paralympic funding.
The sport, which was first introduced during the 2000 World Handi Ski Championship in Crans Montana Switzerland, has been going from strength to strength over the last 16 years.
Initially, Switzerland and Sweden were the only countries trying the sport in 2000 and three teams (two from Switzerland and one from Sweden) attended a seminar along with a representation from the World Curling Federation and other interested parties. At the end of the seminar, the rules of the game had been put in place
In 2002, the first World Wheelchair Championship took place and in March that year the International Paralympic Committee granted official medal status to Wheelchair Curling for mixed gender teams.
It came to the international stage when the organising committee of the Torino Paralympic Winter Games in 2006 agreed to include wheelchair curling in their programme.
Team GB have previously won bronze in 2014, however, at this time, UK Sport has deemed that they are “unable to demonstrate credible medal potential”.
We hope that the team can pull together funding from other sources and still compete at Pyeongchang 2018. For more information, or if you can help Team GB, visit http://www.worldcurling.org/
(Claire Colley, WDSA UK)