Stranraer curlers Bobby Lammie Hammy McMillan and Vicky Wright win Euro gold
Three curlers from Stranraer were part of a historic double achieved by Scotland at the European Championships in Norway.
Bobby Lammie and Hammy McMillan were part of Bruce Mouat’s rink who lifted the men’s title in Lillehammer, winning every match they played.
And for the the first time Scotland returned from the Euros with both men’s and women’s gold – with vice-skip Vicky Wright playing a key role for Eve Muirhead’s winning rink.
The double triumph was especially celebrated at Leswalt Curling Club, where both Lammie and Wright are members.
For Lammie and McMillan, a member of Castle Kennedy Curling Club, it was a second Euro triumph, having also lifted the title in 2018.
And Lammie reckons their opening round-robin win over Sweden’s reigning world and defending European champions was key to their success.
Niklas Edin’s rink beat Team Mouat in April’s world final, but Lammie, McMillan and co turned the tables this time with a 6-2 victory.
That was the first of a perfect nine wins from nine round-robin matches for the Scots who then beat Norway in the semi-final and the Swedes again, 8-5, in the final.
"That first game against Sweden we finished pretty convincingly and that set the tone for the week,” said Lammie.
"We just focussed on ourselves and didn't worry about anyone else. We knew that if we played well we were probably going to have the best chance.
"It's definitely been our best year as a team. We've done a lot of work with each other over the last four years but this year I feel we've taken it to a new level. Teams have to play really well to beat us."
For Wright the final 7-4 win, also against title holders and reigning Olympic champions Sweden, brought a first major gold medal.
She said: “The final was always going to be a hard match to win and we knew that going into it, but we had belief.
"The whole experience was something I will never forget, it is only the third time we have properly competed as a five-person team this cycle and for all of us to pull together and have such a phenomenal week was brilliant and shows the strength in character we all have.
Wright has enjoyed travelling to tournaments and uses the sport as a way to escape the burden of her job as a nurse at Forth Valley Hospital.
She said: “On a personal level it was amazing to win a gold medal especially considering the year we have had with Covid-19. Juggling work has been difficult and I am so lucky to be allowed to compete at the highest level while having a rewarding job. It’s been a hard year and I actually see the trips as a way to get away from it all.”
Team Muirhead now travel to the Netherlands next month to compete in a qualifier in hope of securing one of only three spaces left at the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing.
But for Lammie and McMillan they can already focus on China, have secured their selection last month.
Lammie said: “That's our main goal. It's not that far away now and we've not got that much in he way of competitions left so it's now just two months of training and getting ready.”
And to complete a memorable weekend for the club another Leswalt CC member, Katie McMillan, became a Scottish junior champion.
She was part of the Dumfries-based team Henderson – along with skip Fay Henderson, Lisa Davie and Holly Wilkie-Milne – who beat Team Blair from Greenacres in the final at Curl Aberdeen.