World Wheelchair Curling Championships: Scotland skip eyes gold on home soil

The Scottish wheelchair curling team for the World Championships holding Saltire flags
Aileen Neilson says it's "a privilege and an honour" to skip Scotland in her ninth World Championships in March

Winning a gold medal on home soil at next month's World Wheelchair Curling Championships is the "ultimate aim" for Scotland captain Aileen Neilson.

The 47-year-old was the first woman to skip a Paralympic curling rink at the Vancouver Winter Games in 2010.

And Scotland, hosts and champions in 2005, hope to repeat that glory when the biggest World Championships yet come to Stirling.

"It would be great to get Scotland's name back on the trophy," Neilson said.

The eight-day event between 3-10 March will feature 12 teams for the first time - Canada, China, Germany, Korea, Norway, Russia, Scotland, Slovakia, Switzerland and United States, along with newcomers Estonia and Latvia.

It will be Neilson's ninth world outing since she began curling in 2001 and she hopes to add the top prize to her silver and two bronze medals.

"Any athlete dreams to not only be on the podium but a gold medal and that would be the ultimate aim for myself," Neilson added.

"I know in 2005, the last time they were held in Scotland, I went along to watch and was really motivated and inspired by the team who won the gold medal."

Neilson competes in a mixed gender team, but is hopeful that wheelchair curling's "dramatic improvement" can culminate in a broader spectrum of events.

"It would be great to see a female worlds or a male worlds, or mixed doubles," she said.

"And to see it continue grow and evolve and hopefully we can inspire and motivate other people to try curling."

David Melrose (52) and Gary Logan (47) will make their championships debut for Scotland, alongside fellow Sochi 2014 bronze medallist Robert McPherson (50) and the youngest member of the team, PyeongChang Paralympian Hugh Nibloe (37).

Media playback is not supported on this device

How curling helped Hugh Nibloe cope with multiple sclerosis

Top Stories