World Mixed Doubles host Oestersund, “a town that knows how to take care of curlers”

  • © Jörgen Nilsson

They call Oestersund the heart of Sweden and in a matter of days the city will have a chance to capture the curling world’s heart as it hosts the World Mixed Doubles Curling Championship 2018 from 21 to 28 April.

Oestersund, which has hosted world junior curling events in the past, is located conveniently in the centre of Sweden, with easy access to other Scandinavian countries by train and the rest of the world by its international airport.

Hosting the World Mixed Doubles Curling Championship is another way for Sweden to shine during an already memorable year. So far, this Member Association has collected women's Olympic gold medals and the Ford World Women's silver (Team Anna Hasselborg); men's Olympic silver and the 361º World Men's title (Team Niklas Edin) and silver medals in the women's World Junior Curling Championship (Team Isabella Wranaa).

Swedish locals and curling elite are both excited for the upcoming tournament.

“It’s a really good city for events,” said 17-year-old Maria Larsson, who attends the Swedish Curling Academy and whose team curls out of Oestersund. “People really care in the community and everybody helps each other.”

Her comments were supported by world champion skip Niklas Edin.

“That’s one of the key places in Sweden for curling and they are happy to hold those kind of events,” said Edin. “They’ve got a really good group of people working with those events. They make it successful every time.”

For Larsson, who plays second on her team, not only is the event a chance to showcase the city, but to learn from the greats.

“For us, it’s an opportunity to watch some world class curling and be able to be close to the athletes is a really neat thing,” she said.

She recommends a visit to the Jamtli museum for travellers in the area with some free time on their hands.

The city is also known for its stunning vistas and easy access to the outdoors.

“They’ve got a really beautiful lake and the city is sloping downhill toward the lake,” said Edin, who did his military service in Oestersund, where he lived for ten months. “I hope they’re going to get a bit of spring weather. If it’s not too cold it’s going to be beautiful.”

The highly anticipated event isn’t the first time Oestersund has brought curling to the city. They hosted the World Junior Curling Championships in 1999 and 2008, in addition to hosting the World Junior-B Curling Championships in 2017.

Swedish junior men’s coach Greta Aurell is looking forward to having the curling world come to her doorstep once again.

“I think it’s great that Oestersund and Sweden get to host another big tournament,” said Aurell, who characterised Oestersund as a cold town, but one that knows how to take care of curlers. “They are always doing a grand job,” she said, “and mixed doubles is a growing sport so it’s great.”

To engage with the World Curling Federation on social media in the build to the World Mixed Doubles Curling Championship 2018 follow it on Twitter, Instagram (@worldcurling) and Facebook (/WorldCurlingFederation) and use the hashtags when posting: #WMDCC2018 #curling