Derby fans, we choose YOU! On Sunday 28th July Bairn City Rollers will evolve to present another double-header of action with Blockémon!
For round one, our lovely Central Belters will be hoping the Furness Firecrackers don’t prove too hot to handle in what promises to be a searing battle between two great teams.
Next, the temperatures will reach fever-pitch as it will be time for round two where the Skelpies will be looking to quell the flames of Barrow Infernos. If you can stand the heat you’ll be in for a treat, this one might get a little hot!
Skelpies, Infernos and Firecrackers . . . all the elements are due to collide at the height of summer in an explosion of fun. Come on down and join us, you’ll have a (poké)ball!
The action kicks off 1:30pm at The Peak in Stirling, tickets are moving fast with only a week to go so make sure you grab some while you can.
As something of a teaser for our series of ECDX interviews, I caught up with Pennsylvania based Derby Spectating Team "Hot Pants Cold Beer", who are ECDX regulars. After Auld Reekie's Alma Geddon made contact with them pre-ECDX, the Hot Pants Cold Beer team made sure to catch the Scottish bouts and cheer on the foreigners!
I was talking to group founder Heather Harlin.
We'll start with some background, I think. So, how did you get started as a group?
Well I'm an official in the sport and only ever get to be a fan during ECDX each year. I was with other friends and joked about creating a spectating/drinking team. So our original group include a skater from Lehigh Valley Rollergirls, her husband, and 4 roller derby officials based out of Lehigh Valley. We decided to get shirts made up and a bunch of people hopped on board.
How long have you been going for, and how did you make your connection to our Scottish teams?
This is our second year and our philosophy is that we cheer for the teams that come from the furthest away. They're the least likely to have fans there and so we are their surrogate fans. Last year, Portland, Oregon's team Rose City Roller Girls and Denver, Colorado's team Denver Roller Dolls were the teams we worked hard to cheer for last year. When we found out that Auld Reekie and Glasgow were making the trip we knew immediately that they would be "our teams". Also, a skater for Lehigh Valley and a HPCB member Holly Floyd, "Double Barrel Hot Gunz" lived in Glasgow for a year so it was destiny.
So, before ECDX proper, Auld Reekie came over to play LeHigh. How was that bout - were you surprised by ARRG's performance, and did it change your expectations for ECDX itself?
As an official for that game, I actually didn't pay attention to much of the game. I did notice on Thursday and through the rest of the weekend that Auld Reekie is a second half team, meaning they learn quickly from the first half of play and make adjustments successfully. Those teams are always fun to watch and officiate.
So, coming to ECDX proper: what were the highlights for you? There were plenty of tense games and great derby to choose from...
I, personally, make a point to see teams I wouldn't be able to see within a 3 hour drive. The Scottish teams of course were my favorite - especially Glasgow v. Long Island. I don't think my heart could handle much more that 60 minutes of that game. It was so close and back and forth. The Windy City v. Philly game was intense, I hear, but I only saw the overtime jam from behind what seemed like a billion people and the energy from the fans was contagious!
From all of the games, I know at least 3 or 4 of us lost our voices from all of the cheering. I know mine came back just two days ago. It was such a great weekend
Having seen both Glasgow and Auld Reekie significantly surpass expectations in all of their bouts, do you think there's been a tendency in the US to be a little complacent about the International game? Could you see more European teams coming to ECDX in future (flights permitting)?
Since no one really knew what to expect I think it was a pleasant surprise to see them both. I don't think its complacency, necessarily, just lack of exposure. I can't speak on what ECDX does in terms of team invitations or lottery, but I can say I want to watch more international derby because all derby is wonderful. It's just hard to do when the sport is not main stream and rarely broadcasted in general.
With respect to derby video and broadcasting, it's true that the US has an advantage in livestreams (as DNN shows). But the Swedish National Rollerderby tournament was filmed by their national TV! Do you think ubiquitous bout footage is important to the sport, or just to spectators? (Lacking online footage, would HotPantsColdBeer consider flying to Europe for a big tournament here?)
It would be the DREAM to fly out and catch all the derby. I think video is important to the sport because its important to the fans/spectators. Not everyone has access to multiple leagues so having it broadcast is a great way to watch your favorite teams even from far away.
And of course, to see new ones!
but of course!
Thanks for your time!
As mentioned previously, there are two important things about todays' date. This post is about the second of them:
On this day, in 2011, Sandy created this blog, running it by himself until myself and Cilla Block of Dundee Roller Girls joined the team in September of that year, followed swiftly by Go-Go Gadget Skates and Chasing Katy.
Over the last 2 years, we've gained many more contributors, a few guest posts, covered the world's first Roller Derby World Cup, and been lucky enough to be around to see a new crop of Leagues start up, including the rapidly developing beginnings of Men's and Coed Roller Derby. We've interviewed some brilliant skaters, and, we hope, helped in some small way to promote Scottish Roller Derby in a positive way across the Internet.
On behalf of everyone on the Blog, we'd like to thank everyone who's contributed to making the blog a success, from interviewees to photographers, bout programme artists, guest contributors and anyone else we've bothered or used the resources of.
Hopefully we'll make it at least another two years, to cover the Mens' and Womens' World Cups due up in 2014... and who knows what next?
Because we've been a little uneven with some of the monthly diaries recently, today marks not only a special event in the Blog's history (more on that later), but also a new regular source of monthly diaries: Livingston's own New Town Roller Girls. If you're in Dundee tomorrow, you'll see our first diarist for the league on track as part of the mixed cherry pop bout, presumably showing off her Spectre training... it's league founder Hazzard!
What first attracted you to Roller Derby?
What didn't! It was fast paced, on skates and looked a helluva lot of fun! That and I watched Whip It then after some intensive googling went to see Team Scotland play as they made their way to the first derby world cup and fell in love even more with the massively talented skaters. And, of course, I wanted in on that!
Most skaters have inspirations in their own or other leagues. Who are your derby heroes?
All the girls in New Town that have stuck it out and give it their all each week at training. They make me want to push them harder in to awesome derby players so they can enjoy the sport to its fullest!
Out with my league I adore Kamikaze Kitten of the London Roller Girls! (All of the LRG players are amazing though..) Kami has always stood out to me as a skater and a personality within derby. Her skating style and ability makes me super envious but it's something I want to emulate within myself.
Her determination seems like it has no bounds!
I also really like Re-AnimateHer! She also has great skating ability and I've heard her coaching skills are amazing too. She's just a badass!
Derby names are an important aspect of the sport, especially when you're starting out. How did you choose your name (and number), and does it reflect your personality on track?
My name kind of came about from a work nickname. I was trying to find something at the time that reflected me and my personality. I am always managing to hurt myself or trip myself up in and out of work and coupled with the fact I do a lot of Health & Safety stuff in work in just stuck! (Plus I really like the letter 'z' so that's why there's 2 in there!) On track it depicts the fact I could be skating around quite leisurely and then end up tripping myself up. Which happens fairly often at training!
My number is from the Mass Effect series of games. It's hard coming up with a number that means something to you I found so I started looking for numbers in games and N7 just seemed like the most bad ass one I could find! Plus I'd love to look as awesome as femShep on track!
What's your favourite position and technique?
I don't think I've bouted enough to find a favourite yet. I like being the pivot and yelling and I like to jam (when I don't suck at it) and I like to be a blocker and get in the way! I'm trying to encourage all our girls to be triple threats as I've seen from the Tiger Bay Brawler's success that that really seems to give you an edge!
Technique wise I always want to try and keep my feet moving as much as possible! That and skate low so people might not see me! Other than that I really don't know yet!
Lots of roller girls find it hard not to spread the word about their new sport. How have you been spreading the word?
By telling anyone that will listen! That and using all the social media at my fingertips to tell everyone about New Town Roller Girls! I've had flyers in my work before as well using them to hand out whilst fundraising and all sorts. Sometimes I even tell people in my work about it as I'm serving them if I think they might be interested!
What’s the most important thing you’ve learnt/ done this month?
I have finally somewhat mastered derby stops and transitions! I could do them at faster speeds but they will come with time! They ain't perfect but I can sure has heck do them!
And the most difficult and the best things?
Most difficult right now I'd say would be transitioning the /other/ way. In my case to my left. I am finding it very hard to do! I am attempting to master t-stops the opposite way in hope it helps me with transitioning the other way! I'd have to say some of the best things about derby and especially New Town for me is watching my hard work pay off and the other girls looking and skating amazingly!
What's new for the New Town this month?
Nothing much is happening in July for New Town! We have some mins assessments coming up later on in the month so hopefully after that we'll have some exciting news for people! Right now we are working hard and plodding along nicely!
Alongside that 2 of our girls (myself included) will be taking part in the Granite City Roller Girls cherry popper bout on the 13th in Dundee! We are fairly excited! I am actually less nervous for that than I am for the LRG bootcamp at the end of July though! I think on the day of the bout it'll be a different story!
The Jakey Bites are gearing up for their debut appearance in the upcoming Men's European Roller Derby Championships! The tournament will be spread over the weekend of Saturday 20th July and Sunday 21st July, hosted in Birmingham.
This is only the second MERDC tournament, so the organisers are keen to pull out all the stops to make their mark. The number of teams participating between last year and this year has increased from 7 to 16, and from the discussions on Facebook, it looks like the venue will be jam-packed with team merchandise and stock from the tournament sponsors.
2012 winners, Southern Discomfort, will be back to guard their title from teams from France, Wales, England, and Scotland. The Inhuman League, South Wales Silures, and Quad Guards from Toulouse, will be joining The Jakeys in putting up a strong fight to take home the Cup. As well as getting the chance to watch all of these fantastic teams in action, The Jakeys are hoping to come up against Super Smash Brollers, as former Jakey - Danimal - has recently joined their team after moving to England.
Saturday will set the tournament off to a flying start, with 20 bouts played over 2 tracks. From the line-up issued by the MERDC, The Jakeys will take on Manchester's New Wheeled Order in the third bout of the tournament. By the end of the day, only 8 teams will remain to fight it out for a place on the leaderbord. On Sunday, spectators can settle down to watch all the action from 1 track. They will be treated to the Semi-Finals, Third Place Play-offs, and then THREE Finals!
When asking The Jakeys how they are preparing for the tournament, team skater WK Deid told us, "At Jakey HQ we have been taking preparation for the Euros very seriously, which isn’t like us at all. In addition to our normal Jakey training sessions and our other leagues training (Capital City, Mean City & Bairn City Rollers) we are scrimming almost every week or bouting. We have recently played Team Steve (and celebrated our first win!) and will play Granite City’s co-ed bout in the two weeks before the tournament".
Cult Friction from Dundee Roller Girls will be on the road with The Jakeys as their Line Up Manager. She has built a strong relationship with the men's team after training and skating with them since September 2012. Cult was Bench Manager for The Jakeys in their bout against the Crash Test Brummies in 2012, and her involvement has escalated from there. She told us that, "Skating with the guys every week has resulted in fantastic relationships and friendships with them, as a team and individually. I know how they all skate like the back of my hand so I guess becoming the Line Up Manager was a natural progression. They have taught me a lot in the last 10 months and always push me to up my game so it is an absolute pleasure to be their Line Up at MERDC. I think they will make us all proud at the MERDC tournament and will give a great representation of Men's Roller Derby in Scotland". We couldn't agree more, Cult!
Following the success of their last screening of This Is Roller Derby, Mean City will be welcoming you to The Grosvenor Cinema from 5pm on Sunday, 14 July 2013 for another chance to watch the movie.
'This Is Roller Derby' is a colourful and action-packed documentary that follows the sport from its roots in Austin, Texas, to the modern day Roller Derby that we all know and love .
Tickets to the movie screening are £6 plus booking fee and can be bought online or in person at the box office.
On Saturday 6th July, The Jakey Bites will take on Team Steve at Grangemouth Sports Centre.
And "Who are Team Steve?", I hear you ask! They formed in 2011 with a 'Best of the Rest' line-up after the women's Team Scotland selection, and have bouted against Team Scotland since the 2011 World Cup. With a few changes to the original team roster, skaters from Dundee Roller Girls, Auld Reekie Roller Girls, Glasgow Roller Derby and Granite City Roller Girls will return to take on The Jakeys.
The last Jakey Bites bout in Grangemouth was a sell-out, and this one looks set to be just as popular! Make sure to buy your tickets online for £6 to guarantee entry. Under 12s gain free admittance with a paying adult. Doors open at 2pm(ish) with the first whistle blown at 2:30pm.
The wait is over and The East Coast Derby Extravaganza is finally here.Viewing parties have been organised and i dare say a few beers may well have been purchased.
Firstly,you can watch it via WFTDA.tv and secondly,please remember that the times shown below are UK/GMT and are subject to change.Another point to think about is that these times are the actual bout start times,not when the teams take to the track to warm up.
Friday 28th June On Friday there are only four bouts. On rink 2.. 11PM - Philly Independence Dolls vs. Gotham Girls Wall Street Traitors (WFTDA Regulation) 00:45AM - Jersey Junior Derby vs. 4H Barnyard Bruisers & Red Bank Riot Girls Mixed Team 1:30AM - Texas Rollergirls vs. Gotham Girls Roller Derby (WFTDA Sanctioned)
and on rink 3.. 12:00PM - New York Shock Exchange vs. Mass Maelstrom (MRDA)
So there is really only one difficult choice to make on Friday,do you switch feeds to watch the MRDA bout and miss part of Gotham V Philly and part of the Junior Derby bout?
Saturday 29th June Moving onto Saturday.From this point on in the event,it's worth remembering that nothing from rink 1 will be streamed,which removes some difficult viewing choices but leaves quite a few more. The action kicks off for the day at 3:30pm with Dutchland V Roc City and of particular interest to readers of this blog will be the bouts featuring the Scottish contingent.Sadly though,this is one of those difficult viewing decisions. at 7:30pm on rink 2-Glasgow Vs Columbia at 8:00pm on rink 3-Auld Reekie Vs Dominion Later,there is some amazing stuff on,Gotham Vs Atlanta,Montreal Vs Charm City and Philly Vs Texas amongst many more.
Sunday 30th June Sunday has the Scottish bouts on the same track,in fact,Glasgow kick the day off and are followed by ARRG. at 3:30pm on rink 2-Glasgow Vs Long Island at 5:30pm on rink 2-Auld Reekie Vs Ithaca Like the Saturday,there are some stellar bouts later in the day,Philly Vs Windy City,Atlanta Vs Charm City and the last bout of the event,Team USA Vs Team Canada.
It's the lifeblood of any Roller Derby league. The entry point for all beginners. Our apprenticeship. But for those looking in from the outside, thinking of dipping their toes in the off-axis oval waters of derby, there can still be a lot of question marks over what Fresh Meat actually is.
With our next Fresh Meat taster session on the horizon, Bairn City Rollers took a look at some of the more frequent queries from those looking to join Fresh Meat – be it with our league or elsewhere :-)
"I'd love to give it a go, but I can barely skate..."
Not a problem. Fresh Meat courses will teach you skating from the basics (and we mean the basics) upwards, so your existing skating ability is irrelevant. One of the first things you will be taught is how to fall safely, so whatever other obstacles you encounter from there you can be confident in not getting hurt.
"It sounds fun, but I don't really know the sport..."
Don't worry, you're not alone there. Many skaters now at bouting level knew little or nothing about derby when they first tried out Fresh Meat, so it's nothing to be concerned about. One of our skaters believed it to be "something like rugby but on skates", while another saw "an elaborate game of tag". Indeed your own writer was, somewhat embarrassingly, originally under the impression that it was in fact a worked sport like pro-wrestling (even after I started training I still had lingering thoughts that maybe they would smarten me up to it after a couple weeks...).
"I don't have all the equipment..."
If you can bring the enthusiasm, we can bring pretty much all the rest. At BCR we can provide skates and pads in more or less every size for those wanting to give Fresh Meat a go - all you require to bring is your own mouthguard (we don't share them!) - and most other leagues will have similar set-ups for beginners to give it a try before looking at investing in their own gear.
"What will I get out of it?"
A whole new world of fun! Polling some fellow Bairn City Rollers on the matter, here are some of the responses: "Getting my cardio back", "Having a second family", "Confidence", "The most fun ever!". Your writer now tends to mentally arrange his life's timeline by Before Derby and After Derby, such is the scale of changes it makes! It truly is a sport like no other, you'll never know how you lived without it.
"I'm not sure if I want to be getting hit..."
That's an understandable concern, especially if you are starting out with little skate experience, but chances are by the time you've reached that level (and there will be plenty fun training to be had before you get there) your confidence in falling safely and recovering will be such that it won't be an issue any more. Even then, if it's really not going to be your thing then there are plenty other fun and rewarding branches of derby you can go into such as NSO-ing and refereeing.
"But what if roller derby takes over my life?"
Okay, this one may well happen!
So go on, give it a go! Find out which leagues are closest to you and get in touch. It's a friendly sport that is big on sharing a family ethos, if one league might not be suitable for you they'll be sure to point you in the direction of another one.
Just a reminder to everyone that the applications period to Coach Team Scotland closes on the 30th of this month. If you think you can help the Scottish National Team on their way to the World Cup in 2014, then please apply before it is too late.
The UKRDA press release is repeated below, with all the relevant links:
¤¤¤UK Roller Derby Coaches - We need you!
UKRDA are recruiting key positions for the UK National Teams – applications for the positions of Head Coach, Assistant Coach, and Line-up Manager for Women’s Team England, Scotland and Wales are open NOW until midnight on Sunday 30 June 2013.
Last week Blood & Thunder announced that the second Roller Derby World Cup is to be held in Dallas, Texas in December 2014. At UKRDA we are very excited about being appointed by BRSF to help get the official UK National teams up & running.
The first step in making this happen is to appoint a Coaching Committee for each team. UKRDA will then work collaboratively with Coaching Committee’s to help develop and run fair & transparent skater try outs and get team coaching sessions up and running. Although the day-to-day running of the teams will be in the hands of the Coaching Committees and skaters themselves, UKRDA will be on hand at every turn to offer support, guidance and oversight ensuring everything is running fairly and according to plan.
We’re looking for enthusiastic, committed and passionate people to join the Coaching Committee’s and work with us to ensure Team England, Team Scotland and Team Wales are the best they can be; to represent UK Roller Derby in style next December. Applicants' need a lot of drive, experience, knowledge of cutting edge roller derby, and the leadership & communication skills to coach your team to success.
Come on UK Roller Derby... let’s smash last time’s results!
To apply for one of these positions, please fill in this application form: https://www.dropbox.com/s/88tnsfwibceb1 ... cation.doc For details on the selection procedure for National Team coaches see: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1nCj ... sp=sharing For details on the Blood & Thunder World Cup see: http://rollerderbyworldcup.com/