I'm a little late on this as the Women's World Curling Championships occurred a few weeks ago but given the lack of attention the sport receives I felt I should still post about it and the news it generated.
This article, out of Canada where the championships were held in March, discusses the division of the women's and men's championships and the positive effects that have come from holding the events separately--or rather the lack of negative effects. This is the fourth year the women have held their own championships and they are hopeful that the event will continue building and that they won't, as one curler predicted, have to curl naked to get attention.*
The Chinese women made quite an impression in Canada. Getting special attention was the Chinese skip Bingyu (Betty) Wang. Their success at the worlds is especially impressive given that the entire Chinese team began training in an ice hockey rink because there was no curling ice in the entire country until just a few years ago.
Part of the Chinese women's success, and the success of other national teams, is due to a Canadian influence. Canadian curling coaches have been travelling worldwide to bring the sport to other nations. This has some worried about the increase in competition and the threat to the Canadians' dominance. But most see it as what it is: a good way to grow the sport.
In the end Canada maintained its dominance defeating China.
*Well maybe not curl naked but some female curlers have gotten naked to promote their sport in a calendar.