Primary school pupils marked the last day of school term by taking to the ice in Alexandra for the annual inter-primary school curling tournament.

Fourteen teams from across Central Otago vied for the title at the event, held at Alexandra’s Iceinline Sports Complex.

Alexandra One claimed first place (11.5 points), Alexandra Two came in second (11 points), Clyde Two took out third (10 points) and Alexandra Three finished in fourth (9.5 points).

Pupils from Alexandra Primary School, Cromwell Primary School, Omakau School, St Gerard’s School, Roxburgh Area School, Poolburn School and Clyde Primary entered the 12th annual competition.

Tournament organiser Nick Loughnan said the competition marked the last day of school term for the pupils.

Essentially “speed curling” played in 15 minute rounds, it differed in format from traditional hack and crampit curling in that it was played across the width of the rink instead of the length, he said.

New Zealand Curling executive council member and past president Bruce Kissel said the children played with “learner” or “children’s” stones, which at 11kg were half the 22kg weight used by adults.

The tournament was a way to get children involved in the sport and hopefully continue, he said.

He spotted a lot of talent on the ice and hoped to see some involved at the South Island Secondary Schools Curling and the New Zealand Secondary Schools Championships in future, he said.

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