ARDE launch a new era of Spanish Championships

Posted: by aoanla [Source]
Tags:  arde national tournaments spanish roller derby

Whilst it's not true for every country, the history of National Tournaments in Roller Derby is often tied up with legitimate organisation and representation within that nation. (For example: the French Championnat is, in a sense, what it is, because it is backed by the FFRS).

Whilst Spain has had a national tournament since 2016, this was run by the Spanish Skating Federation. That body, as with several around the world, does not well reflect the interests of Roller Derby, having a particular alignment with World Skate; this extended to them not providing any support to the Spanish national team at the last World Cup in 2018.

As such, attendance at the Campeonatos has been dropping steadily since they were initiated.

From last year, however, Roller Derby in Spain has legitimate representation. The Asociación de Roller Derby de España (ARDE - which also nicely means implies "fire" and "passion") represents the WFTDA-rules and WFTDA-aligned teams in Spain (of all gender and age policies).

This year, then, there is finally a more representative Spanish National tournament, backed by ARDE. With ARDE's greater inclusion, there's enough teams to require two divisions for the WFTDA-gender tier; a single division Men's tier will also provide a MRDA-gender champion.

Leagues are allowed to submit multiple teams (A and B teams, for example), with the restriction that only one team is allowed per division, and no skaters can be shared between team rosters. Given that only the WFTDA-gender tier has two divisions, this effectively means that we can expect only WFTDA teams to have more than one entry.

Flat Track Stats' Global rating is used to seed these divisions for 2019.

Map of teams in the ARDE championships, coloured by division/gender-policy.

Map of teams in the ARDE championships, coloured by division/gender-policy. (Red = Division 1 WFTDA, Yellow = Division 2 WFTDA, Dark Red = Division 1 MRDA). Hybrid teams are indicated by linking of the stars for their constituent teams.

Division 1 (WFTDA) [8-9 Jun, plus final 7 July] [Valencia]


The Division 1 teams competing are pretty much the ones you would expect. The top rated teams in FTS Europe from Spain, they consist of:

  • Roller Derby Madrid A
  • Barcelona Roller Derby “All Stars”
  • Rayo Dockers (Valencia)
  • Black Thunders (Madrid)
  • Sicarias de Cierzo (Zaragoza)

Division 1 will run as a full round-robin tournament, with those 10 games deciding the candidates for the Championship game to be held on the 7th of July in Madrid.

ARDE Championships Logo and Fixtures image.

Division 2 (WFTDA) [22-23 June plus final 7 July?] [Murcia]


Division 2 is a little more complex. As with some of the teams in other National tournaments (for example, France's Championnat), we have a few "hybrid" teams competing, pooling the resources of several leagues into a single roster. The list is rounded out by two B teams from Division 1 competitors: Roller Derby Madrid and Valencia's Rayo Dockers competing in both divisions.

There are a mix of "city" and "regional" teams in this division: Asturias is an "autonomous community" (something between a county and a nation in UK terms), and the Bonitas del Norte effectively represent the remaining autonomous communities to their east on the north coast (Cantabria and Navarre are actual autonomous communities, and Bilbao and Donostia/San Sebastián together represent the largest cities within the Basque Country). (The Frankensteam are less easy to categorise, as Salamanca and Cáceres effectively represent the western border of Spain with Portugal, whilst Badalona is over near Barcelona to the east of the country.)

  • Roller Derby Madrid B
  • As Brigantias (A Coruña)
  • Frankensteam (Salamanca / Bad'n'Roller (Badalona) / Cáceres)
  • Bonitas del Norte (Cantabria / Botxo Killers (Bilbao) / Easo Avengers (Donostia/San Sebastián) / Nafarriors (Navarre) )
  • Rayo B-lockers (Rayo Dockers B / Valencia)
  • La Güestia Roller Derby (Asturias)
  • Roller Derby Murcia
  • Vigo Roller Derby

With 8 teams, a full round-robin tournament, as used in Division 1, would require 28 games. Without multiple tracks, this won't fit in the two days of the Division 2 fixture. We expect to hear more about the Division 2 competitive structure in due course.

In a way, the most interesting parts of this Division are the hybrid teams: merging skaters across leagues can be difficult, especially getting them to gel into one force; in particular, we're watching Frankensteam to see how the distance between their western and eastern halves affects coordination.

Division 1 (MRDA) [6-7 July] [Madrid]

There are no Facebook Events or FTS entries for this tournament as yet

As with the WFTDA-gender Division 1, the MRDA-gender Division 1 is fairly predictable, with the top 3 teams from FTS Europe represented:

  • MadRiders Roller Derby (Madrid M)
  • Lobishommes Men's Roller Derby (Galicia M)
  • Easo Hooks Roller Derby (Donostia/San Sebastián M)

We'd assume that this will be a full round robin, as only three games will be needed to establish a champion. With MadRiders the most travelled of the teams, and the highest rated, we'd put them odds-on for the championship.