DD(ude)otM: April: The New Fee

This kid is the perfect mix of serious and softy. The New Fee is an all around nice guy who eats, breathes, and dreams roller derby!

AB: Looky what we have here! The New Fee as derby dude of the month!!
TNF: I know! Thank you everyone, it truly means a lot. It really hits you in the face when you get that “Call me” message from Annie leading to a very loud “Congratulations”. I thought it was going to be about my ball hat I left at your shop from my last hair appointment, come get it or it’s going in the trash kind of call ;)

AB: It may be obvious to some but maybe not… Where did your derby name (/you) come from and why?!
TNF: The New Fee is “The Newfie”, just in a clever way; brought to you by Lady G Slip’er. Some people look at the name and may not understand until they see the number (709) which is Newfoundland’s Area Code. Funny story – when I attended Slay of Fundy II as a spectator in St. John last May, I wore my Twisted Sisters shirt with my derby name printed on the back. One of the skater’s on The Jam Jams (Newfoundland’s team) said she didn’t realize I flew up with them and started asking me questions regarding my involved with the Newfoundland Roller Derby League. I had to clear that up by explaining to her that I am actually fully involved with a different islander team, who ended up rocking The Jam Jams back to bed. I was very proud of the Travel Team and how well they played in that bout.

AB: You’ve taken on a tremendous coaching role this season, what are your goals for 2014?
TNF: I am very pleased and confident of my roles this season. It is going to be a very busy season coaching The Twisted Sister and the Travel Team, but I am 100% in and dedicated to fulfilling my coaching positions. My goals are to really shape the teams by introducing new calculated strategies to up our game and to really work as a team. I also have a goal to focus on each player on each team to work on things they can improve to be an overall better player.

AB: Who is your derby role model?
TNF: Tough question I have a few:

EL TANNANT from Roller Derby Québec would certainly be one of my player role models after enjoying his performance at the Men’s World Cup that just occurred a couple weeks ago. He was actually the coach from the very beginning of that league.

Bonnie Thunders from NY Gotham City, I really enjoy watching her as a jammer; she has 14 years of ice skating and 8 years of roller derby under her belt. Her skills and strength are so fluent and certainly a pleasure to watch on the track

Rotten Rob and Jesus Takes The Wheels coach and train a very impressive and disciplined team, The Lumbersmacks. I am very excited that their league has entered the WFTDA Apprenticeship Program, it’s great to see a Maritime team achieve such a goal.

AB: What is your biggest coaching struggle?
TNF: Coaching two separated teams this season, I do not want to train them the same. I have to go in to each practice in a different way, which can be a challenge.

I am also very bad with names; real names and derby names. I apologize for this.

AB: How or will your training plan differ from Twisted Sisters to All-Stars?
TNF: The Twisted Sisters having new skaters will be trained at a slower rate. The Travel Team will be trained at a faster pace with more advance training due to it being an All-Star Team.

AB: I keep hearing a rumor that you wanna skate. True or false?
TNF: True. I have been procrastinating on this and it is time to step up. April 15th (payday!) is the “order date” for skates and I will certainly enjoy the summer by skating in parking lots under the warm sun.

AB: How do you encourage your team to prepare themselves for game day?
TNF: I encourage them to implement the skills, techniques, and strategies that were taught and trained at practices leading up to game day. I will also encourage them to put on their ass kicking skates and tie them up so tight that no one can knock them off. Finally, I encourage everyone to have fun and to applaud their personal accomplishments.

AB: Which teams are you looking forward to playing this year?
TNF: The Moncton Mad Hitters will certainly be a tough but good game. Halifax Anchor Rollers for the Atlanticade Cup will also be amazing as the skaters on that team are very fun.

AB: If you could have any super power, what would you choose?
TNF: I like this question so my ridiculous super power will be – “The power to hold my breath under water BUT only if I am not wet”.

Thanks everyone once again for voting me as DDotM. It is a pleasure to work with all of you and I am very enthused and excited for the 2014 season.

You can check out The New Fee’s profile here.

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DGotM: March: magic pony

She’s the creator, the spirit, and the solution. We have something amazing that no other league has…and that’s a magic pony!!

AB: How cool and obvious that March would be magic pony month!
mp: I appreciate the electronic high five.

AB: Way back in 2010, you instigated the creation of Red Rock ‘N Roller Derby. Is it all you thought it would be?
mp: I’m not sure I really knew what it would become. I just knew it would be awesome, that it would be a fun sport to play. It’s so much more than a sport, of course, and to see how it empowers and changes people is the probably the thing I didn’t predict, and what I love best about roller derby. It’s exciting to me to watch people take initiative on their committees and teams, and keep building our league past anywhere I ever envisioned.

AB: In our 2013 season, you skated with the Moonshine Maidens and were a part-time announcer. What are your plans for this season?
mp: I’ll skate with the Maidens, maybe announce a time or two.

AB: What is your favourite part of roller derby?
mp: I love to see women who’ve never played a sport, never been on a team, never considered themselves athletes, become these fierce, bold, confident bad a$$ skaters. I love to see women and men brave refereeing, one of the hardest jobs in any sport, never mind in a sport so young the rules change every year. Everyone has to be so adaptable, the rules change, the strategies change, and coaches and announcers have to be ready to change with it. It’s so amazing we have people in our league that say, yeah, sure, I’ll take that on! And I love there’s a role, and a derby name, for anyone who wants to be part of the sport. NSOs, photographers, first responders, they are all part of the growth of the league, and that’s very cool.

AB: Your alter ego is really cool; can you explain your name and number to everyone?
mp: When there’s a problem to be solved and someone suggests some crazy, random idea to fix it, you might say, “yeah sure, why don’t we just wish for a magic pony?!”. My definition of a magic pony is “an improbable solution to an insurmountable problem”. I’m a problem solver, I love crazy solutions and I really don’t think any problem is insurmountable if we use collaboration and build good relationships. And, as a mediator, it’s my job to help people shift so they can be open to problem solving – I think of those shifts as “180′s”.

AB: You have been on our Board of Directors since the beginning of time. Since our AGM last week, are you excited to work with new board members?
mp: I love how many people are willing to step up and help build our league. I like change as much as I like foundation. We have a bit of both on our new board, and that’s going to work out perfectly.

AB: How does your professional life transfer to your roller derby life? (Cuz it really does!)
mp: It’s all about relationship building. Good relationships simply equals good solutions. It’s the key to moving forward positively in any endeavour. I’ve played lots of sports in which my professional background wasn’t as necessary, but the fact that it is, is completely connected to the fact that roller derby isn’t just a sport, it’s a community, and a culture. People are passionate about what we’re doing and that bodes well for the future of our sport in PEI.

AB: What has been your most memorable roller derby moment?
mp:  Watching people take on roles they probably wouldn’t have thought themselves capable of in their pre-derby lives, and hearing people describe themselves as super-heroes.

AB: Who’s your roller derby inspiration?
mp: Lady G is an inspiration in her commitment to our league. She loves this sport and all the crazy people who play it. It’s hard managing the building of a sport people are so passionate about and she is a thoroughly dedicated volunteer and ambassador who sticks with it even when times are tough and most would give up.

AB: What are you most looking forward to in our 3rd season?
mp: I’m most looking forward to just playing a third season. I remember a few months before our first season, after 18 months of practicing, thinking “Am I really doing this? I am being foolish? Will I injure myself and screw up my 44 year old body?” I decided I had to justify 18 months of posting pictures of myself in my underwear all over Facebook, and decided I’d skate one season and then see how I felt. After the first bout, I realized I was being an idiot, and I’d skate for as long as I can.

 

**Thanks for the sweet photo Elle Blythe. Check out magic pony’s page here.

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DGotM: February: Hell’n Hurtley

She may be 5 foot nothin’ but this triple threat packs a mean punch! We share our February love with the one and only Hell’n Hurtley!

 

AB: Congratulations to you, Hell’n Hurtley! The month of love is yours!
HH: Thanks! After the derby break I’m really excited for the upcoming season!!!

AB: You are one of very few skaters who have competed on all 3 current RRRD teams. What are your thoughts on that?
HH: I’m pretty fortunate to have played a lot of Roller Derby over the last 2 seasons! I always learn new things from playing for or against different skaters in our league. I love skating in our monthly B&W scrimmages partly for this reason!

AB: In our last season, you skated with the Moonshine Maidens as well as worked as their assistant coach. Think you will take on another coaching role in 2014?
HH: Yes and no. I don’t think that I want to be an official team coach this season, as I want to skate as much as possible. That being said I do have plans to coach a few practices over the next couple of months focusing on blocking and stopping. I’m also going to Ottawa next month and am scrimmaging with the winners of last year’s Beast of the East, Rideau Valley Roller Girls, so am hoping to bring back new skills and strategies to share!

AB: Which team(s) would you like to skate for this upcoming season?
HH: I would like to skate for the Travel Team and one of the Ch’town teams.

AB: You are a true triple threat. Do you have a favourite position to play?
HH: I think it depends who we are playing! Haha, those Moncton girls hit hard! I love blocking because you get to work with your teammates and try to out strategize the other team, but jamming is awesome because you get to skate really fast and wear panties on your head.

AB: What is the biggest obstacle in your roller derby life?
HH: Making time for all of the roller derby I want to play!

AB: What keeps you motivated and enthusiastic about roller derby?
HH: Seeing the new fresh meat play in their first scrimmage. They go into it super freaked out and come out super pumped!

AB: Until now, what is your favourite derby memory?
HH: Jamming for the Travel Team against Halifax on a power jam and scoring a butt load of points.

AB: Any equipment upgrades you plan to do before we hit our 3rd season?
HH: I’m thinking about getting Bont boots to go with my PowerDyne Reactor plates when I go to Neon Skates Ottawa next month.

AB: Who is your roller derby hero, mentor, or inspiration?
HH: I’m inspired by Rainbow Fight who not only built the roller derby league in Newfoundland but is also one of the top skaters in Canada! I love how she constantly changes her skills and strategies to keep up with the game!

*Thanks to Arlene Giddings Photography for the great shot of Hell’n!

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DD(ude)otM: January: El Beau

Happy 2014! I’m stoked to have gotten to interview the most elusive being that RRRD has to offer. He is our referee and ultimate smarty pants (or weirdo, you decide!) and we dig him very much. Let’s kick off this year right with El Beau!

AB: Congratulations, El Beau, on becoming the first awesome
person of 2014!
EB: 2014 is going to be the best year ever !
The league is going to be better than ever before
(and, yes, everyone’s lives are going to be better, too).
I look forward to proving myself somewhat-to-mostly worthy of this accolade.

Thanks, so much, btw.

AB: As we close our derby break, what are you looking
forward to in the new year and 2014 season?
EB: Derby U – teaching, and learning !
The ongoing improvement of my Skating Skills;
therefore, improvement of my Reffing Skills;
especially because of the combination of the above.
FASTER, FASTER, MORE, MORE, …
BETTER, BETTER !!!

AB: We have a lot of freshies joining our vets this month,
is there any advice you can offer everyone for a smooth
transition?
EB: Smoothness is guaranteed. There isn’t an issue. It’s gonna be AWESOME.
The vets all remember not knowing this or that / not being great at this or that.
The vets are continuing to work on stuff themselves.
The league was so much better in 2013 than in 2012;
and, there’s gonna be a BIGGER / PHENOMENAL improvement this year !!!

AB: After a solid 2013 reffing year, what position do you
hope to take up this year?
EB: In terms of Reffing Positions, I want to continue working on all of them :
IPR (both Front-Inside-Pack-Ref & Head Ref*),
OPR & Jammer-Ref.

[ *The Head Ref doesn't have to be in Rear-IPR position, but ... ]

In terms of my ‘position’ in the league, I hope to help teach Freshies, Vets, other Refs & NSO’s to know the Rules more thoroughly while improving blah, blah, blah, as I’ve said.

AB: What has been your favourite derby moment so far?
EB: There have been a bunch – so many little moments of getting things (in understanding & physically); but :
- Blowing my whistle at the same time as Sheddy at a tournament, and he makes the same call I was just about to – same thing happened with KevBot and others.
- At ‘Murder,’ I NSO’d in Scorekeeper position – never having done so before, and never having Jam-Reffed;
and, I called the really experienced Jam-Ref (from Quebec) over to discuss a point the the Jammer should have gotten for an opponent re-entering from the penalty box behind her. The Games Official looked it up to verify. I was right.
The Jam-Ref gave me huge compliments for my (first-time) Scorekeeper skills; e.g. :
always having my hand up early – echoing his points before he looked for them.

AB: How did you come up with your name and number?
EB: For months, I had another Name in mind, …
when (or if) I remember it, I’ll insert it.
Anyway, it didn’t get any awesome reviews from you guys / I knew it was interesting, but not awesome.
But, it was connected to the Number I still use which – oh, ya, … well, first I continue about the number.
The Number changed slightly because of the Name switch.
1618 means 1.618…. = The Golden Ratio (nothing to do with showering)
It a special number like Pi. It has to do with spiraling – like a snail shell, or a Skater knocked dizzyingly to the Inside.

[ Remember Freshies, you can't have decimal points nor other small characters WITHIN your (up to) 4 large characters. Other small stuff can only be before or after.
https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=514380778600783&set=pb.169028706469327.-2207520000.1388606771.&type=3&src=https%3A%2F%2Ffbcdn-sphotos-a-a.akamaihd.net%2Fhphotos-ak-frc1%2F856176_514380778600783_382388323_o.jpg&smallsrc=https%3A%2F%2Fscontent-a-iad.xx.fbcdn.net%2Fhphotos-ash2%2F207347_514380778600783_382388323_n.jpg&size=1135%2C2048 ]

So, I was going to be ‘One Over’ – both, as in, ‘Try to get One Over on me’ and the fact that 1 divided by .618… = 1.618… (perfectly exactly) … my Number was going to be .618 which IS legal.
So : ONE OVER .618
Get it ?
It just requires a long-winded, scientific explanation.

So, I kept trying to think of other Names.
One day, three or four popped into my head. I called Kara-lyz’her, and asked for her opinion of them. And, she said she liked the one I was thinkin’ I liked more than the rest. She said she really liked it. And, it grew, and grew on me too.
EL BEAU
1618

AB: What motivates you in your roller derby career?
EB: Fear

AB: You have a unique perspective on our game, any wisdom
you can share with the Red Ones?
EB: Coaches need to let Jammers re-enter the Track in the most ideal spot – instead of ALWAYS at the back of the Pack !
[ Big Cause & Effect Issue ]
If Refs see it done the way it should over and over again at practices, they’ll get better at seeing it / calling it right every time. I caught one of our Refs give two wrongful Cutting Calls on a PEI Player (against an away team) in one game. It donned on me that the Ref had pretty much been trained that it’s so unusual to see a player come back onto the track quckly instead going to the back, that … … …

The Anti-Training of the Refs must be undone. [No anger intended, and it doesn't apply to all coaches]

I’m getting to the point where I will over-Call another experienced Ref.
In Halifax (Aug. 31st), a Halifax Ref made an unquestionably bad Cutting Call against a PEI Jammer late in the game.
Kevin M. (Sir Snaps A lot) & I both saw it perfectly, and made the correct No-Call on one of those Jammer-knocked-out-by-opponent-who’s-in-front-of-her-and-comes-back-in-in-a-split-second-later-before-anyone-has-a-chance-to-go-back situations.
I was hoping it would be called for a review, so I could testify to have it overturned. It wasn’t.

AB: Is it true that your skates are from Skate Country?
EB: My skates are from the Pro Shop of Skate Country !!! …Ch’mas of ’83, or so.
( I just asked the guy I got them for free from )

- The Pivot Cups disintegrated (all over the track) … I replaced them.
- Bearings seized, and chewed up the otherwise good wheels … replaced.
- The plastic Trucks bent under my weight, and used to try to turn my feet against my will – wrecking my shin muscles in the constant struggle … I bought aluminum trucks / they didn’t fit / I took them to a machine shop to have a guestimated 1/4″ cut off / worked perfectly.
- The Uppers came unglued from the Soles … I had them re-glued.
- The Uppers came unglued again … I bought ‘Elevator Bolts,’ drilled holes through the soles & uppers, bolted them the f#ck together.
- My Toe-Stops were inadequate / old-fashioned … I took ‘em off / drilled holes for the new, wider bolted, modern Toe-Stops … I did a great job of ONE of the two Toe-Stops
- A little bit of an Upper is partially unglued again … Duct Tape is holding !

AB: What are your derby goals for 2014? ( ***is this question
redundant??)
EB: I’m gonna try to not be redundant.

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DGotM: December: Peg Leg Meg

With nearly 2 years of DGotM interviews under my belt, I love when something new happens. Our Learn to Skate program is coming into testing mode and there have been a number of new skaters who have immersed themselves into regular league practices to learn more, get more skate time, and build friendships. This freshy has made such a positive impact on our league that we voted her as our December skater of the month! Introducing… PEG LEG MEG!!

AB: I’m going on 2 years of DGotM interviews and would like to congratulate you for being our first Fresh Meat participant to have won this title!
PLM: Thanks so much! I am still in dis-belief. I am extremely honoured and thankful to be DGotM.

AB: It hurts our hearts that you are mending a broken fibula, can you say what happened that caused your injury?
PLM: Honestly, I just fell really stupidly. Don’t believe it? Ask the Giles sisters. We were doing positional blocking drill with someone skating backwards in front of you as a guide and I went down when I was the positional blocker. All I could hear was popping, all I could feel was pain, and all I could see was my leg in an awkward, un-natural angle. I have weak tendons in that ankle from multiple sprains from 20 years of soccer so I feel like it was bound to happen. I just got it out of the way early in my derby love life.

AB: Sometimes we choose our derby name and sometimes it chooses us. How will Peg Leg Meg stay true to her name?
PLM: hahaha My peg leg will forever be held together will metal screws, a plate, and some rope….yes, rope. So regardless if this name sticks or not, the alarms when I go through a metal detector at an airport and the wicked new scar will be a constant reminder that I am Peg Leg Meg.

AB: What inspired you to join our Learn to Skate program?
PLM: I actually saw you guys at the Gold Cup and Saucer Parade and thought “oh my god! We have roller derby here??!”. Before this thought could reach my lips everyone with me looked at me and said “I could see you doing that.” I am still, despite the broken fibula, happy I joined.

AB: Up until your injury, you were skating both freshy and regular league practices. How do you think the extra skate time has affected your overall skating skill?
PLM: Once we were told we could go, I jumped at the opportunity. Going to the regular league practices has TREMENDOUSLY helped develop my skills. Fresh meat has three amazing coaches, and I have learned so much from you guys. So I figured I could learn even more if I immersed myself amongst a bunch of vets. Everyone was so welcoming and eager to help me learn new skills and offer tips on how to improve skills that needed work. They also whipped my a$$ into shape with all the hot laps and the black widow drill!

AB: What is your biggest challenge with roller derby?
PLM: Waiting from Thursday to Tuesday without getting the chance to practice! No, in all seriousness, transitioning from backward to forward is still something I struggle with. Also, trying to familiarize myself with the rules has proven a bit of a challenge. I am one that likes to learn a sport by playing it, not by reading about it. So watching the Moonshine Maidens and the Twisted Sisters play as often as I could helped a lot.

AB: So far, what is your favourite part of joining our league?
PLM: Everyone is welcome for who they are and you can feel that.

AB: Do you have any derby heroes?
PLM: Well, I haven’t really watched a whole lot of derby but I look up to everyone in our league. We have some amazing talent on PEI. I do have to shout out to my heroes that were there helping me at the time of my break though. The organization and fluidity of what to do with a man down was incredible.

AB: What does your healing and strengthening plan look like?
Meg: This ankle used to give me a lot of trouble but apparently, it should be good as new. So I’m pumped about that. I’m hoping I’ll come back better and stronger. There will be a full cast (4 weeks) and a walking cast (not sure how long), then I’ll get to start physio. After some working out, I’ll be able to get right back at it.  I’ve heard 6 months is a “normal” recovery time to be healed, but I’m hoping sooner.

AB: What are your roller derby goals?
PLM: Well, first things first, I can’t wait to pass my skills testing. After securing a spot on the Charlottetown roster, whether it be a new team or mix into the Maidens, I would love to make the travel team.

Sending all the healing moonbeams to Peg Leg Meg, we look forward to skating with her again in the 2014 season. Derby <3

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DGotM: November Edition: Ruby Soho

Those Dimples! Outrageous hair! A booty that sends you flyin’! Ruby Soho is the deadliest cutie-pie on 8 wheels!

 

AB: Congrats, Ruby Soho! You’re so deserving of the November title!
RS: Thanks so much! I’ve dreamed of this day since derby girl of the month became a thing. Is that like super lame or what?!

AB: We just finished our season which you played on both Moonshine Maidens and Red Rock ‘N Rollers, what are your thoughts on how this season played out?
RS: This season was really great. It was action packed and there were so many great opportunities to match skills with teams from all over the place. I think that the Moonshine Maidens were on fire this year and I know, personally, I feel much more confident that I know what I doing when I hit the track. Overall I feel extremely positive about it and excited to see what happens next year.

AB: Did you get through the season relatively unharmed?
RS: I did, believe it or not and I feel very fortunate to be in one piece. I am seeing a massage therapist due to being bashed and beaten for a few solid months by amazingly powerful ladies. No complaints though! I am trying to use the off season to get super tough so I can avoid injury for the foreseeable future.

AB: You are currently co-coaching Charlottetown’s learn to skate program with Billie the Shiv and myself, how’s the coaching role treating you?
RS: Coaching Fresh Meat has really revived and reinvested my love of this sport. I can’t believe how amazing and brave this group is and they never flinch whenever we throw something crazy at them. I was unsure about coaching at first but I think that Billie, you and I really just have such a good groove when we get out there that it’s making things really relaxed and I think it’s benefiting everyone. Shout outs to all those amazing Freshies!

AB: What is your draw to Fresh Meat?
RS: I think that what has drawn me to Fresh Meat most is that when I started I didn’t strap skates on my feet and look like a superstar. I struggled with so many things, but I remember the excitement I got every time I  put those skates on and how I never wanted to take them off. I love how everyone starts at different places in their derby career and I really wanted to help foster this excitement in other people no matter where their skill level is. I know that sometimes it gets really frustrating when you feel like you will never accomplish something but letting someone know that that is normal and seeing them reach their goals is pretty awesome.

AB: When I 1st met you at practice nearly 3 years ago, you were a kid with knuckle tattoos! Ruby Soho, right across the knuckles! Was your derby name obvious from the beginning of time?
RS: I actually didn’t really know what I wanted my name to be at first. I tossed around a lot of ideas before deciding Ruby Soho was just made to be. I didn’t want people to think I was a weirdo and had my name tattooed on my knuckles but the name is so second nature now I can’t believe I doubted it. Ruby Soho is my family dog’s name, for the record (and a really rad Rancid song), and that’s why it’s tattooed on me.

AB: We’re usually travel buds for all of our travel team games, what is your favourite part of playing for the Red Rock ‘N Rollers?
RS: Well when we are travelling one of my favourite things is watching “fish ons” with the best hotel buddy ever! Playing with the Red Rock ’N Rollers has been really amazing and I love getting to play teams from other provinces because it’s a really great learning experience and helps me build my strategies and skills.

AB: You recently switched over to Antiks, how’s that going for you and what are your thoughts on gear necessities?
RS: I love my Antiks so much. Having my foot stay in place instead of rolling around is a very nice change. As for gear necessities, clearly comfortable boots are a must but I think that well-fitted knee pads that meet your needs can never be overlooked. Our knees really take a crazy beating and protecting them is so important. My mother has had two knee replacements and I would really love to avoid that; fingers crossed. Other than that having a few good flexible pairs of wheels is something I think everyone needs. We are never really playing in the same place every time and being prepared for a different surface is always good. Also one can never have too many tights and whenever they go on sale buy one in every colour.

AB: What are your hobbies outside of derby?
RS: Too many things. Right now I am taking cake decorating classes, I enjoy painting, knitting, sewing, building furniture, playing music and I really enjoy baking. Seriously, I need to tone the hobbies down especially now that I am back in school learning how to program.

AB: As we hit our middle mark of the learn to skate program, what advice would you like to share with our freshies?
RS: Never give up on yourself! Honestly, determination and dedication will get you so far in derby and being able to admit that you don’t know how to do something and getting someone to help you is not shameful. You are the only person holding you back so shake it off and skate it out.

 

Check out Ruby Soho’s profile here. Photo: Marc Henwood

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DGotM: October: HOOK ER WHEELS

This feisty skater has been around since the early days of Red Rock ‘N Roller Derby. She is a hard hitting blocker and after party winning rockstar… It’s Hook’er Wheels!

AB: Congrats Hook’er Wheels! You are a kicka$$ dudette and I’m happy to see you take the October title!
HW: Wow thank you all ! What a way to start birthday month.

AB: What a gal, what a name! What is the significance of your name and number?
HW: My name well I guess we seemed to be hooking wheels a lot with our wide beginner wheels and I thought it sounded sweet n sassy and 2 is my fav #.

AB: Since joining our league in 2011, what would you say has been the biggest roller derby challenge?
HW: My biggest challenge , penalties oh jezzz I have a hard time staying out of the box.

AB: Is there any piece of gear that you couldn’t live without?
HW: My 187 knee pads, they’re big pillows.

AB: Who is your roller derby role model?
HW: My role model is Lady G Jaime she is so encouraging and gives so much to everyone, she had swagger on wheels right from the start.

AB: This 2013 season you played with Summerside’s Twisted Sisters; what is unique about playing with the Sisters?
HW: Playing with the sisters… well I was an only daughter with 3 brothers and I now have a few sisters <3

AB: What was your favourite derby moment in 2013?
HW: It was bitter sweet. I was working near the bridge on a hot summer Friday. 3 beauties,  eMMa mAe,  Jessica Rabid, and Leather ‘N Mace were heading to a game in New Brunswick. They flew by me doing about 180, they saw my truck n my butt sticking out of a flower bed slammed on the brakes and tried to kidnap me and take me with them! I cried when they left me and threw my self into a rose bush !

AB: While you are a super hard worker, you sure know how to party! What advice do you have for people who really need to lighten up?
HW: I may need legal advice I’m not sure if I should answer this question ! Hahaha I just get so excited to be around any fun , having a good time comes too  natural to me.

AB: We currently have 2 groups of Fresh Meat training. Are there any motivating words that you can offer the new skaters?
HW: Fall fall fall! I was so afraid to fall – it looks so far down there , it makes us skate stiff and rigid once you loose that fear it’s Game on !

AB: As our competitive season closes this year, what goals/skills will you be working on to prepare for the next season?
HW: 1st I will need to stay out of the box I guess I need to re learn how to do that , and I would like to try jamming next year if my 2013 role model will mold me !

Check out HOOK ER WHEELS profile here!

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DD(ude)otM: September Dude: spRAWkit

From creating our first ever promo video to training and coaching our teams, spRAWkit has been given’r to this league for a couple years. He kicks our butts with all that dry land training but we’re all better for it…right?!

AB: spRAWkit! Congratulations, derby dude!
S: Woah! Is this real life? Not going to lie feeling pretty hyped to be Derby Dude of the Month haha.

AB: What’s the story behind your name/number?
S: Ummm, I’m not really sure that there is a “story”behind by name and number. But, shortly after the point of no return with my involvement in derby, I believe it was you Annie who said I better hurry up and get a name before you stuck me with something like Chomps, or Chomper haha. On the reals though, I basically lived on a BMX bike growing up, with the sprocket being the front ring with teeth that powers the bike, and 25:9 representing the amount of teeth on the front and rear of the bike. Really not every exciting at all.

AB: You have been involved with our league in many different ways over the past couple years, what is your favourite role?
S: Its true, over the last 2 seasons I’ve seemed to transition from fan, to photographer, to conditioning coach, to assistant coach, to all around awesome guy. But my favourite role to date would have to be benching for the travel team. Being involved with practices and being on the bench allows me to be actively involved in the team and leagues evolution.

AB: You bench manage games for the Moonshine Maidens and the All-Stars, do you notice any differences working with 2 teams?
S: It’s no secret that the majority of the travel team are Maidens, so being on the bench doesn’t have a notable difference, apart from my level of involvement with the teams off of the bench. I do know that there are never any dull moments on the bench regardless of which team it’s with.

AB: What do you enjoy about travel team?
S: There isn’t a whole lot I don’t enjoy about the travel team. There have been moments of tension but thats natural with any coaching role. I have very much enjoyed the opportunity to get to know each and every one of the players on our roster. I have enjoyed the challenge of adapting to the dynamic of coaching a team made up of strong independent women.

AB: As we near the end of our season, what was your favourite derby moment?
S: Favourite derby moment? Even though our bench was short and we just missed the win, Saturdays bout against the Harbour Grudges might have to have been the best moment yet. And yes, I do remember winning the Atlanticade Cup against them back in July. Being on the bench for that bout, and seeing the team playing jam to jam, was such a satisfying moment. We were communicating clearly, putting new ideas from practice to use, hitting hard, and bridging better than the golden gate. Seeing the team working together like that couldn’t have been a prouder moment as a coach.

AB: You have been working hard with training our skaters to become fit and agile. Do you notice improvements?
S: Since the very first travel team tryout we hosted the improvements I have seen from within the league are incredible. I don’t want to name any specific examples as to not leave anyone out. But I will say that there is not a single skater in the league who regularly attended our thursday night practices who has not demonstrated stronger skating, smarter playing, and more refined skills on the track. Players have matured as individuals but most importantly we have matured as a team and I am happy to have been a part of it.

AB: What do you do outside of derby?
S: Outside of derby I’m a fitness instructor and personal trainer at 3rd Degree Training here in stratford. I also coached the Canada Games MTB team at the 2013 Sherbrooke Summer Games. I enjoy building and riding motorcycles, but lately, there isn’t a whole lot of time in a day that isn’t spent at least thinking about derby skills, drills, strategies and practice plans. I think I’m hooked.

AB: What are your off-season training goals?
S: Off season goals! I haven’t even finished processing this season yet haha. Off season I’d like to skate as much as I can to help me come up with new plans for our awesome team next season. Maybe I’ll be involved with a few sessions throughout the winter who knows!

AB: Our Learn to Sk8 program starts mid-September, what wise words can you share with our new recruits?
S: The most important piece of advice I can offer any freshies entering our program is that attitude is everything! Conditioning, skating, practicing is all for nothing if your attitude is wrong. Look at everything, even your most hated parts of learning, training, conditioning, or practicing as an opportunity to be better at something you might not be so good at. Spend as much time in your skates as you can, but want to be in them, the rest will come to you naturally.
~spRAWkit

 

Check out the promo video from Red Rock ‘N Roller Derby’s first bout EVER! Thanks spRAWkit!!

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We’re Recruiting

Interested in derby? Now is the perfect time to get involved!

Red Rock ‘n Roller Derby is holding its next Fresh Meat – Learn to Skate program in September.

A 12-week program, Fresh Meat will teach the basic skills all skaters need, as well as specialized training for those interested in reffing, rather than playing. The program is open to women age 19 or older who want to play, and men and women age 19 or older who want to ref.  No previous experience necessary.

The program starts Sept. 19 and will be held Thursday nights 7-9 p.m. in Charlottetown and Summerside. The cost is $120 (which includes a $30 deposit to cover insurance).

There’s only 20 spots available in each city so make the decision now to sign up!

Email recruitment@redrocknrollerderby.com to secure a spot.

Hope to see you on the track this fall!

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DGotM: August Edition: smASH potatoes

See her jam once and you will never forget it. smASH potatoes is the fun-lovin’, long-legged side dish who skates for both the Moonshine Maidens and the Red Rock ‘N Rollers All-Star Team.

AB: Congratulations, smASH potatoes on being…obviously awesome! You joined Red Rock ‘N Roller Derby this year, what brought you to roller derby?
SP: Thanks Annie! I am so pumped to be derby girl of the month! I saw a derby bout a few years ago when I was down in the states and thought to myself  “I could totally do that!” I was very excited when I found out there was a league here on the island!

AB: What position(s) do you play?
SP: I’m mainly a Jammer but I’ve done a bit of blocking too.

AB: So, what’s up with the way you skate? (We are all thinking it, man) You look like you’re outta control but I’m not convinced you are… Is this your signature move?
SP: Haha! I’ve never been the most graceful person and this is the first sport I’ve ever played on skates! I am in control for most of the time but other times I’m just getting lucky and trying to stay off my ass! I’m bad for loosing my balance often but I’ve lost it enough that I know how to catch it now. Even if it means flailing around the track! Ha. Hopefully I’ll become a little more stable in the future.

AB: What has been your most memorable derby moment thus far?
SP: My most painful memory was definitely from my first game against the Twisted Sisters when Mosie O’Pummel and Leather N’ Mace were beating me into the ground!  But the most memorable would probably be when we won The Atlanticade cup at The CUP! Good times!

AB: Off the track, what makes your world turn?
SP: I spend my time doing all sorts of things.  I am an artist and love creating! I mainly work with drawing and sculpture and have a few series up around town. Right now I am working on an interactive installation piece that will be a part of the “Art in the Open” festival in Charlottetown this August.

In the summer I like to go skim boarding a lot and also enjoy crusin’ on my Vespa. I’ve recently taken up the Ukulele and I love singing and playing it! Roller derby is one of my new true loves!

AB: Who or what inspires you to be so fearless on your skates?
SP: I’ve always been an all or nothing kind of person when it comes to sports. I guess I’m kind of competitive that way. I figure you might as well just go for it. I also love going fast! It’s such a great feeling whether I’m skimming, snowboarding, biking or skating I just have the need for speed!

It was motivating to see the other teams play at Muddy River Murder in Moncton. I was definitely inspired by seeing how comfortable and fast some of them were on their skates.

AB: What skills are you currently working on?
SP: I am hoping to get my hockey stop in working order before the end of the season. I have just started practicing that recently. I’m also working on my balance along the edges of the track and being sturdier on only one skate.

AB: Our next game is August 10th against Fog City Rollers. Do you have any pre-bout rituals?
SP: My pre-bout rituals involve, taking the day off work and eating my face off with delicious food from the farmer’s market. The smoked salmon bagel there rocks my world! Maybe grab a bag of potatoes while I’m there. Hehe.

AB: Who is your derby wife?
SP: I feel like I have multiple wives right now.  Everyone we play with is so freaking awesome!

AB: As we hit the halfway point, what are your goals for your first roller derby season?
SP:  My goals are basically to just keep on improving my game every way I can figure out how to.

**Thanks to Alex Taber for the kicka$$ photo of smASH!

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