Franco Zumofen inducted into World Curling Hall of Fame

Italy’s Franco Zumofen has been inducted to the World Curling Hall of Fame by World Curling Federation President, Kate Caithness, at the summer bonspiel in Cortina d'Ampezzo.

This honour was accepted on Zumofen’s behalf by Gianluca Lorenzi, the son of his best friend Ivo Lorenzi, due to Zumofen being too unwell to attend the presentation.

Widely regarded as the face of Italian curling, Zumofen has made significant contributions to the development of the sport in Italy, most notably ensuring its place in the Italian Ice Sports Federation.

He has also run successful curling events, including the 2006 Olympic Winter Games in Torino and two Winter University Games, in Tarvisio (2003) and Torino (2007), as curling manager.

He was the founding member of the Curling Club Dolomiti Cortina d’Ampezzo, in 1965, and has held senior positions on the organising committees for international curling championships – the 2003 Le Gruyère European Curling Championships, in Courmayeur, the 2005 World Junior Curling Championships, in Pinerolo, the World Mixed Doubles Curling Championship 2009 and Capital One World Men’s Curling Championship 2010, which were both in Cortina d'Ampezzo.

World Curling Federation President, Kate Caithness, said: “Franco thoroughly deserves his place in the World Curling Hall of Fame for his hard work cultivating our sport in Italy. And, what better place to induct him than at the summer bonspiel in the idyllically set, Cortina, where his curling journey began?

“His contribution to our sport is one reason curling is in such good health today. On behalf of our 54 Member Associations our warm congratulations go to Franco.”

Members of the World Curling Federation Hall of Fame are inducted either as ‘curlers’ or ‘builders’. A ‘builder’, the category which Zumofen is inducted under, is someone who has given distinguished service and has made a major contribution to the development and advancement of curling internationally.

Zumofen is the last of three inductees to the World Curling Federation Hall of Fame this season. Warren Hansen of Canada was inducted, as a 'builder', in April at the World Men’s Curling Championship 2016 in Basel, Switzerland, while Sweden’s Elisabeth Högström was inducted as an ‘athlete’ at the conclusion of the World Mixed Doubles Curling Championship 2016 in her hometown of Karlstad.

This is the fifth year the World Curling Federation has accepted nominations for induction into the Hall of Fame, which is described as the highest ‘non-playing’ honour that the World Curling Federation can bestow. This recognises outstanding achievements and contribution to World Curling.

Prior to 2012, the WCF awarded the World Curling Freytag Award, named after the late Elmer Freytag of the U.S. Curling Association, who was a founding member of the International Curling Federation (now the WCF).

For more information on the World Curling Hall of Fame, go to: www.worldcurling.org/world-curling-hall-of-fame