Pete Fenson

Peter Fenson (born February 29, 1968 in Bemidji, Minnesota) is an American curler. He was the skip of the men's rink that represented the United States at the 2006 Winter Olympics, where they won the bronze medal, the first Olympic medal for the United States in curling. He has won eight national championships, the most recent in Philadelphia in March 2014, and six as skip.[1]

Peter Fenson
Born (1968-02-29) February 29, 1968
Team
Curling clubBemidji CC,
Bemidji, MN
Career
World Championship
appearances
8 (1993, 1994, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2010, 2011, 2014)
Olympic
appearances
1 (2006)

Career

Fenson took up curling at age 13; his father, Bob Fenson, won the 1979 national championships and is now the coach of Pete's rink. Pete Fenson was a third on the national champion rinks in 1993 and 1994, and his rink, skipped by Scott Baird, made it to the semifinals of the 1993 World Curling Championship and placed fifth in 1994.

Fenson was the skip of the rink which won the 2003 U.S. national championship, and went on to take eighth place at the 2003 Ford World Curling Championship. He also participated in the 2003 Continental Cup of Curling. After finishing as runner-up in the 2004 U.S. championships, Fenson's rink won the 2005 national championship. At the 2005 World Championship, Fenson's rink finished the preliminary round in a six-way tie for first place, but was eliminated from competition in a tie-breaker against defending Olympic champion Norway. Still, Fenson's sixth-place finish earned his rink the right to represent the U.S. at the 2006 Winter Olympics in Turin, Italy.

At the Olympics, Fenson's rink had a 6–3 record in the round robin portion of the tournament, losing only to Italy and eventual finalists Finland and Canada. This put the rink in a three-way tie for second place with Canada and Great Britain; Fenson's rink faced Brad Gushue's Canadian rink in the semifinal, losing 11–5 in nine ends. Two days later, however, the rink rebounded to defeat David Murdoch's Great Britain rink in the bronze medal game 8–6, securing the first-ever American Olympic medal in curling. On January 16, 2007, the team was named the 2006 USOC Team of the Year.[2]

Fenson's teammates in the 2009-10 curling season were Shawn Rojeski (third), Joe Polo (second), and Tyler George (lead). The team's lead for the past four years (including the 2006 Olympics), John Shuster, had decided in 2006 to depart from the team to form his own team. Fenson won the 2010 USA National Championships, which took place in Kalamazoo, Michigan. His victory earned him the right to play for the US at the 2010 World Championship in Cortina d'Ampezzo, where he and his rink finished 4th after two disappointing losses in the playoffs to David Smith's rink from Scotland. Tyler George soon left to form his own team.

With Ryan Brunt playing at the lead position, Fenson and his rink participated at the 2011 Continental Cup of Curling, where Team North America defeated Team World in a record-breaking performance. His team then went to the 2011 US Nationals and, after winning some tight matches, finished the round robin with an undefeated 9-0 win-loss record. He then edged Tyler George out in the playoffs and in the finals to become the repeat US champion, winning his seventh US national championship. He and his team represented the United States at the 2011 Ford World Men's Curling Championship at Regina, Saskatchewan in April. The team opened with a win against Denmark, but suffered a series of close losses and finished in 10th place with a 3-8 win-loss record, their worst at a world championship.

Fenson and his team missed the playoffs at the first three events for their 2011–12 World Curling Tour season. However, they had better fortune at the Laphroaig Scotch Open, where they flew through the knockout round and defeated David Brown in the final to win the event. Fenson and his rink were selected to represent the United States at the 2012 USA-Brazil Challenge to play against Brazil for a spot in the World Championships in Basel, but Brazil withdrew from the challenge. Fenson then participated in the 2012 Continental Cup of Curling, where Team World won a close tournament over Team North America. Fenson participated in the 2012 United States Men's Curling Championship, and went through the round robin with a 9–1 win-loss record. In the playoffs, he was defeated by Heath McCormick, who had previously beaten him in the round robin, but rebounded with a win in the semifinal over former teammate John Shuster. In the final, he lost a close game to Heath McCormick, losing his bid for a third consecutive nationals title and a chance to play at the world championships.

Fenson and his team played at the 2013 United States Men's Curling Championship, but failed to qualify for the playoffs, losing to McCormick in a five-team tiebreaker.

Upon their semifinal win at the 2012 United States Men's Curling Championship, Fenson and his team were qualified to participate at the 2014 United States Olympic Curling Trials.[3] Fenson and his team finished second in the round robin, and played John Shuster in the three-game final round, but lost after a lopsided third game. Fenson was hired by NBC Sports to work as a curling analyst during the Olympic games.[4]

Personal life

Fenson is married to his wife Roxanne and has two sons, Alex and Graem.[5] He enjoys golf, biking, and spending time with family. His brother, Eric Fenson, is a curler and former teammate. His son Alex is a member of his team.

Fenson has a bachelor's degree in technical illustration and graphic design. He is the owner of a two-restaurant chain, Dave's Pizza, which operates in Bemidji and Brainerd, Minnesota.[5][6] He is currently employed as a coach with USA Curling.[7]

Grand Slam record

Fenson was only active in Grand Slam events between 2003 and 2009

Key
C Champion
F Lost in Final
SF Lost in Semifinal
QF Lost in Quarterfinals
R16 Lost in the round of 16
Q Did not advance to playoffs
T2 Played in Tier 2 event
DNP Did not participate in event
N/A Not a Grand Slam event that season
Event 2003–04 2004–05 2005–06 2006–07 2007–08 2008–09
Masters Q DNP DNP Q DNP DNP
Canadian Open DNP DNP DNP Q DNP Q
The National DNP DNP Q Q Q DNP
Players' DNP QF QF DNP DNP DNP

Teams

SeasonSkipThirdSecondLeadEvents
1993–94Scott BairdPete FensonMark HaluptzokTim Johnson1993 USNCC, WCC
1994–95Scott BairdPete FensonMark HaluptzokTim Johnson1994 USNCC, WCC
1996–97Pete FensonJason LarwayJoel LarwayEric Fenson
1998–99Pete FensonEric FensonShawn RojeskiMark Haluptzok
1999–00Pete FensonJason LarwayShawn RojeskiEric Fenson
2003–04Pete FensonEric FensonShawn RojeskiJohn Shuster2003 Cont., USNCC, WCC
2004–05Pete FensonShawn RojeskiJoe PoloJohn Shuster2005 USOCT/USNCC, WCC
2005–06Pete FensonShawn RojeskiJoe PoloDoug Pottinger2006 Cont.
Pete FensonShawn RojeskiJoe PoloJohn Shuster2006 USNCC, OG, WCC
2006–07Pete FensonShawn RojeskiJoe PoloJohn Shuster
2008–09Pete FensonShawn RojeskiJoe PoloTom O'Connor
2009–10Pete FensonShawn RojeskiJoe PoloTyler George2010 USNCC, WCC
2010–11Pete FensonShawn RojeskiJoe PoloRyan Brunt2011 Cont., USNCC, WCC
2011–12Pete FensonShawn RojeskiJoe PoloRyan Brunt2012 Cont., USNCC
2012–13Pete FensonShawn RojeskiJoe PoloRyan Brunt2013 USNCC
2013–14Pete FensonShawn RojeskiJoe PoloRyan Brunt2014 USNCC
2015–16Chris Plys (Fourth)Pete Fenson (Skip)Joe PoloJason Smith2016 USNCC
2016–17Pete FensonJared ZezelMark FennerAlex Fenson

Awards and honors

See also

References

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