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Gay curler comes out publicly in the middle of national championship run

Dustin Kidby competes for a national title this week.

2014 Paralympic Winter Games - Day 5 Photo by Hannah Peters/Getty Images

Canadian curler Dustin Kidby has taken the opportunity of his competition in the Brier — Canada’s curling national championship — to talk to the media for the first time about being gay in the sport he loves, in an interview with CBC Sports.

While it’s still rare enough for a male athlete at a national-championship level to come out publicly, it’s even more rare for him to do it on his sport’s biggest stage in the middle of competition. The national championship runs March 4-12.

“I feel accepted,” Kidby said of his experience with his Saskatchewan team. “They've all gone out of their way to let me know they don't judge me and I'm their teammate.”

Through its first nine games at the Brier, Saskatchewan was ranked seventh of 12 teams competing.

Truth is, Kidby has been out amongst the curling ranks for a while. Last month he even competed in the Canadian Gay Curling Championship in Montreal. So while this is the first time he’s talked to the media about being gay, he’s talked to people in the sport about it plenty.

None of it has raised any kind of issue in the curling community up north.

"I think what's interesting about this story is that it simply doesn't raise an eyebrow in the curling community," Katherine Henderson, the CEO of Curling Canada, told CBC Sports’ Devin Heroux.

You can find Dustin Kidby on Facebook, or on Instagram @Deuce10.