Tell us about how you first got involved with Roller Derby?
I’m afraid it’s not a terribly exciting story to tell. In fact, it’s quite the cliché. I was living in Dunedin at the time and a couple of friends of mine found out about a freshmeat course that was about to begin with Dunedin Derby. (And yes I had recently seen Whip It). Long story short, they left the sport soon after joining but my inability to not see things through to the end meant I stayed. I had to conquer this challenge of freshmeat. Over time I became more and more passionate/addicted/obsessed about derby. And well, here I am today, with the awesome Pirates!
How has it been transferring from DD – Dunedin Derby to Pirate City Rollers?
If you have ever been involved in the sport of roller derby, you will know that a derby league is more than just a bunch of skaters. Leagues function as families, and these families exists across NZ and the world. Leaving Dunedin, and therefore leaving my first league was a bizarre experience. I was leaving what had become my derby family to sign up with a new family. Odd right? No? Maybe just me. Anyway, to further my anxieties of transferring leagues, I was attempting to transfer to the one of the TOP leagues in NZ. Those who know me, know that I am somewhat of a ridiculous individual, so what were the big scary pirates going to say when this ridiculous individual turned up to one of their trainings? To be honest, I almost didn’t go into the arena to attend my first training, except for the fact that Ruby snapped me sitting in my car. So there was no backing out at that point (unless I wanted to be forever branded as ‘that creep’ from Dunedin Derby). So I attended the required trainings over the coming weeks and was voted in as a skater. I was ready to train hard, play hard and warm the bench whenever needed, and I was going do a real good job of warming that bench too. So imagine my shock when I was named as an All Scar for the 2014 season! Only a month or two in and it already felt like I had been with the Pirates for years, I was a pirate! I love this league and I encourage anyone who is looking to partake in roller derby in Auckland, to come give us a visit.
What has been your most exciting Roller Derby memory thus far?
AHHH no, my answer is going to be a total cop-out. Apologies in advance cause I don’t have a specific memory that ranks as the ‘most exciting’. Derby is made up of so many exciting moments! I guess the greatest moments in derby are when you walk away from a game, or a training knowing that you have achieved. Whether you played a great game, your team worked really well together, or simply that you learned or improved a skill; nothing beats that thrill and satisfaction… Oh no wait! I got one! Being named an All Scar and my very first All Scar game being against my former team, DDs ‘Gallow Lasses’. One of the BEST games of derby I have ever played!
What is your favourite move and why?
I don’t really have a favourite move as such. But in lieu of a favourite move, I’ll say anytime you see someone do anything, or help a teammate to do anything to stop the other jammer getting points and get their own jammer points is pretty much a win. Another win move? Not faceplanting or embarrassing myself is a general win. This one time, at TGSS, I got a chair caught on my wheel and partially dragged it on the track with me….twice. Shame on my face.
Any words to people who are thinking about trying Roller Derby?
The incredible thing about roller derby is that it is an entry level sport. Anyone of any age, fitness, gender, experience, ANYONE can pick up this sport. It has a great support network and is just generally an amazing community to be a part of. In saying that, be prepared to turn up with a ton of determination, dedication and drive. This is the fastest growing female sport and it is fiercely competitive. You will train the hardest you have ever trained, you will surprise yourself, and you will become addicted.