Curling Shooting Percentage

In a game of curling, there needs to be some statistic that calculates how accurately each teammate throws their stones. Thus, the “shooting percentage” statistic was created to calculate this. Additionally, a shooting percentage helps the media convey how well a specific curler is throwing their stones in a game. The system to scoring a curling shot is a bit subjective, but is the best way to convey the effectiveness of curlers’ shots to the audience.


Shooting Percentage

A curler’s shooting percentage conveys how well-executed their shots have been during the game, or an entire event (if multiple games are played). Each shot is rated on a scale from 0 to 4, where 0 is a completely unsuccessful shot, and 4 is a successful shot. On occasion, a really difficult shot (like a circus shot) can be given a 5 or 6. (We will soon learn about how to rate a shot.) This rating system is used for each stone that a curler throws.

In an 8 end game of curling, a curler will throw 16 stones. Thus, the maximum number of points they can receive is 64. Similarly for 10 end games, the maximum number of points a curler can receive is 80 because they throw 20 stones. If a curler performs a throw through, 4 points are deduced from the maximum number of points a curler can score for that game. This reduces the maximum score to 60 and 76, respectively. If multiple throw throughs occur, the maximum score would be adjusted for however many throw throughs occur.

During each game, a scorer will fill out the shooting percentage ‘scorecard’ for each team. On these ‘scorecards’ a scorer will have a letter code to convey the type of shot thrown, and then a space for the rating of the shot. For each shot thrown, the scorer will determine which type of shot is thrown, and then rate it.

Calculating Shooting Percentage

To calculate a curler’s shooting percentage, the scorer will add up all of the rating points accumulated thus far, and divide it by the maximum amount of points the curler could have earned. If any throw throughs occurred, the maximum score will be adjusted. If you are calculating shooting percentage in the middle of the game, make sure to account for the maximum score that could be achieved up to that shot.

For example, if you calculate the shooting percentage after 5 ends, the maximum amount of points earned can only be 40. Thus, the total points accumulated is divided by 32 or 40 rather than 64 or 80, respectively

The shooting percentage calculation can be extended for different types of shots. If you have seen curling on television, you will notice that the Draw Shooting Percentage, Hits Shooting Percentage, and Overall Shooting Percentage are displayed to the viewers at various points throughout the game. This allows the viewers to understand how well each curler is throwing their draws and hits, and how it affects their Overall Shooting Percentage.

Scoring a Shot

As we previously learned, a curling shot can be rated on a scale of 0 to 4, where 0 is an unsuccessful shot, and a 4 is a successful shot. Additionally, a well-executed circus shot can be rated a 5 or 6. If a throw through occurs, no rating is given and an “X” is marked, rather than a number. To practice scoring a shot, we will walk through a few examples below.

Example 1

The skip tells you to draw to the button. Half of your stone ends up on the button. What would you rate the shot?

You should rate your shot a 4. Overall, it was a successfully executed shot. Even though your stone isn’t fully on the button, it does not deserve a 3. Your shot would have been a 3 if it ended up in the 4 Foot.

Example 2

The skip tells you to draw behind a corner guard. Your stone makes it to the house, but is barely covered by the guard. What would you rate the shot?

You would rate the shot a 2. Overall, the weight of the shot was well-executed. However, the line of the shot wasn’t good. It would not be a 1 or a 0 because the shot nearly reached where it was supposed to be.

Example 3

The skip tells you to throw a double takeout on two stones located on opposite sides of the 4 Foot. You hit the first stone and it rolls to the edge of the 12 Foot, and you miss the other stone completely. What would you rate the shot?

You would rate this shot a 1. The shot only moved a single opponent stone away from the button. Otherwise, the shot was unsuccessful, and your stone is now out-of-play.

Example 4

The skip tells you to throw a raised triple takeout. You make the shot perfectly. What would you rate the shot?

You would rate this shot a 5 or 6. You executed the shot perfectly. Since it was a circus shot level of difficulty, and deserves such a rating.

Example 5

The skip tells you to draw to the button. The stone stops in the guard zone. What would you rate the shot?

You would rate this shot a 0. Overall, the shot was completely unsuccessful and did not end up in a place where it could even be considered for scoring.

Example 6

The skip tells you to nose freeze to an opponent stone in the Back 4 Foot. You end up freezing to the stone, but it is a corner freeze instead. What would you rate the shot?

You would rate this shot a 3. You threw the correct weight to freeze to the stone, but the line was a little off. Overall, the result of your shot is close to the shot the skip intended.