|Photo: Lottie Hedley|
Naseby, 18 July 2015 – Blackstone Hill won New Zealand's 2015 Bonspiel to claim the Snuff Box trophy for the 10th time since 1890. Their two rinks (teams) won 7 of 8 games over the two day event, the same number as Ranfurly. However the honours went to Blackstone Hill on a countback of points scored, with their 179 points just heading off Ranfurly's 168.
This tenth win brings Blackstone Hill level with Cambrian as the club with most victories. Cambrian last won the event 60 years ago .
This special event on New Zealand's sporting and cultural calendar was held on Naseby's Centennial Ponds in Naseby, Central Otago on Monday 13 and Tuesday 14 July.
Last held three years ago, this was the first time since 1932 that Oturehua's Idaburn Dam did not host New Zealand's Grand Match. There was not enough ice on the traditional home of the event for a full bonspiel.
"Warmer winters meant that we had to think about alternatives in case the Idaburn couldn't be used," explained Jock Scott, one of Naseby's ice masters. "So earlier this year we gave the ponds here in Naseby a bit of an overhaul, enough to allow 35 plus games to be played simultaneously."
"And the ice here looks fantastic at the moment," he added before the event. "The bottom one especially looks like a sheet of glass."
Ice conditions certainly lived up to expectations during the morning games, but a few cracks allowed some water to dampen down some sheets – but not the curlers' enthusiasm – during the afternoons.
After the bonspiel a traditional "Beef and Greens" dinner and Curlers' Court were held, where the trophies for overall winners, game winners and leading rinks were presented, and forty new curlers were formally initiated into the curling fraternity.
- 11 Jul 2015 – ODT: National Bonspiel called at Naseby
- 13 Jul 2015 – ODT: Bonspiel atmosphere buzzing
- 13 Jul 2015 – 3 News: Curlers gather for National Bonspiel
- 14 Jul 2015 – ODT: Bonspiel brings banter and warmth on ice
- 15 Jul 2015 – ODT: Reporter stands and delivers
- 15 Jul 2015 – ODT: Curling traditions steeped in mystery
- 16 Jul 2015 – ODT: Bonspiel 'boost' for town