New performance director appointed for Scottish curling

A new Performance Director for British and Scottish Curling has been appointed by sportscotland, in partnership with British Curling, after an intensive and thorough recruitment process.

Graeme Thompson will now take responsibility for leading and driving forward the Mens, Womens and Wheelchair programmes for the PyeongChang 2018 cycle.

Graeme, from Edinburgh, said: “I am delighted to be taking up the position of Performance Director of the Scottish and British Curling Performance Programme. The success achieved by the athletes in Sochi was tremendous. It has provided a very good basis for further developing our programme into the next Winter Olympics in PyeongChang in 2018, and beyond, as we seek to continually demonstrate being one of the foremost global curling nations.”

Having started the position at the end of July, Graeme brings a wide range of performance skills to the programme. Educated at Moray House, Edinburgh, he has over twenty years experience as Performance Director to GB Water Polo, England Rugby League, as well as a three year period at UK Sport as performance advisor.

All three curling programmes won medals at the Sochi Winter Olympics and Paralympics (Men Silver, Women Bronze, Wheelchair Bronze) contributing to the most successful Winter Olympics since 1924 for Team GB.

The British and Scottish Curling performance is managed within the sportscotland institute of sport and is overseen through the British Curling Board. Both UK Sport and sportscotland are investment partners and there is a close collaborative partnership with the Royal Caledonian Curling Club.

Since the success at Sochi, UK Sport announced increased funding for all three programmes at its Board meeting in June. The British and Scottish performance programmes are likely to receive continued funding from sportscotland to ensure the whole pathway builds on its success in Sochi and continues to deliver success on the world stage in PyeongChang 2018 and beyond.

Mike Whittingham, Director of High Performance at the sportscotland institute of sport, said: “Winter sports, and in particular curling, are hugely important to Scotland and so it was important we found the right candidate to lead this highly successful sport. We are delighted that Graeme Thompson has accepted this position and his style and experience will help move this programme forward. I know he is relishing the opportunity of working alongside a well-recognised international team.”

The new Chair of British Curling, Willie Nicol, said: “All the Board, and myself, are looking forward to working with Graeme over the next four years and building on the excellent results from Sochi.”