BRITISH CHAMPS TIER 3 – KENT ROLLER GIRLS VS SURREY ROLLER GIRLS

Kent Roller Girls welcomed Surrey to the Herne Bay Arena this weekend for our third game in Tier 3 South of the British Roller Derby Championships.

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The county match-up was our toughest game yet in the tournament, but our preparation showed with the KRG being the first to score, taking the lead to 17-0 after the first few jams.

There was some impressive footwork from our jammers Tenacious, Vikispeedia, Bionic Bessi and Foxygen, as they juked and ducked around Surrey’s defensive blocking players. Likewise, while Surrey’s jammers put up a fantastic show of power and speed, our blockers slowed them down with a solid wall of skaters. By halftime we had a 134-56 lead. Both teams fought a hard fight in the second half but our tenacity paid off, taking the win 247-100. KRG captain, Jennapocalypse, said “I couldn’t be prouder. We have been working really hard and it shows. We came together as a team and it was that that won us the game.”

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After Cornwall’s solid 219-108 win over North Devon’s Grin N’ Barum earlier that day, we needed to win by 25 points to stay top of the division’s table. This decisive win leaves us equal on points with second place Cornwall, both having won 3 games, but ahead by 121 on score differential. We are fighting Cornwall for the top spot in the table and, in turn, promotion to division 2, so we can’t afford to relax for a minute!

On 3 July we face off against Plymouth at Surrey’s home venue in Guildford in our next champs game, then later that month we face the formidable Cornwall in our last game of the tournament.

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KRG skate a marathon!!!

On May 29th members of Kent Roller Girls will be skating a marathon at the South Coast Roll in aid of Canterbury Food Bank.

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The South Coast Roll is an annual event held at Goodwood race track in West Sussex. Those aiming to skate a full marathon (that’s 26 miles!!) need to complete 11 laps of the undulating track, whatever the weather. Last year saw our skaters battling strong winds and rain so we’re hoping that things improve on that front this time round!

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If you’d like to support the team just go to our Just Giving crowdfunding page. The food bank (registered charity no. 1153791) is an excellent cause and any amount that you can donate is greatly appreciated and goes towards helping them support low income families and individuals across the Canterbury district.

https://crowdfunding.justgiving.com/kentrollergirls

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British Champs Tier 3 – Kent Roller Girls vs Bath Roller Derby Girls

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Kent Roller Girls currently sit top of our division in this year’s British Roller Derby Championships following a decisive win on the 23rd April, against Bath.

We hadn’t played Bath before as they were promoted from Division 4 after last season. Both teams took a few jams to get into their rhythm but KRG started strongly with an opening 5 points from our superstar jammer, Vikispeedia. We picked up our momentum in the first half and continued to dominate despite Bath’s tenacity, ending the second half 195-27 to KRG.

Bath rallied at the beginning of the second half, looking threatening against our defence. A strategic timeout from our amazing bench coach on the day, Demi Lition, helped us get the initiative back. The game ended on an impressive 306-95 to KRG!!!

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The large score differential puts us on top of the table, ahead of Cornwall who we face in the final weekend of the Championships.

Our next Championships game is at home in Herne Bay on 21 May against the formidable Surrey. Surrey looked impressive against Plymouth this weekend, snatching a narrow victory, so the match-up between the county teams promises to be exciting. Tickets are now available for the game, which is a double-header also featuring Cornwall vs Grin n Barum from North Devon. Get tickets at the link on our website, or see the event page on Facebook

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All photos by www.RollerDerbyPhotography.co.uk

KRGs first home game of 2016!!!

Kent’s 1st home game of 2016 is a British Championships Tier 3 South double header!

May 21st sees us welcoming Grin ‘n’ Barum roller girls, Cornwall roller derby, and Surrey roller girls to our venue, the Bay Sports Arena in Herne Bay.

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Tickets: £8 in advance / £10 on the door. Under 12s FREE! –  http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/2533179

Schedule is as follows…

1pm – Doors Open

First Bout: 1.30pm – Grin ‘N’ Barum Roller Girls vs Cornwall Roller Derby

2nd Bout: 3.30pm – Kent Roller Girls vs Surrey Roller Girls

More info can be found on our Facebook event page: https://www.facebook.com/events/215387208849644/

KRG PROFILE: CERBEROSS

Name: Cerbeross

Position: Head Referee

Story behind the name: When I started in derby I was a security dog handler, which involved guarding places with my dog. Cerberus in greek mythology was the 3 headed hound that guarded the gates of the underworld. So I mashed my name with the legend and it all kinda fitted together.

Favourite Ref hand signal: Nowadays it’s the lead jammer signal. Start with my right hand behind my back to remind me my jammer is on their initial pass then when they get lead jammer I fire my hand out super quick. Although back when I started reffing the signal for misconduct was doing an “I’m a little teapot dance” which I kinda miss.

Referee role model: Hmm, don’t really have one. I guess Scream Winchester was since he taught me how to zebra and I do go to Xavier Bacon when I need something clarifying.

Why roller derby?: Mostly because it was different but also because I wanted to get back into sport. In my teens I was always playing some form of sport then in my twenties I started smoking and drinking and stopped sporting. Then I discovered roller derby… my life was never the same again…

What made you want to wear the stripes of team zebra?: Well back when I started there weren’t any mens teams in Kent and travelling to the closest one wasn’t practical so if I wanted to skate for a derby team then it had to be as a ref. Not that I mind – Team Zebra is the best.

How did you get involved with KRG?: Jennapocalypse and I were working together pre derby and she got involved first. She needed some lifts to games and I helped out which is when I saw my first bout. 6 months later I was attending fresh meat as a baby zebra.

What goes through your mind before officiating at a game?: Usually I think about the position I’m reffing and try to remember all the annoyingly complicated things that can happen in that position such as star passes if I’m jam reffing or having to deal with a foul out mid jam if I’m inside pack. Then I try to remember how to deal with them.

Your favourite derby moment so far?: I recently reffed my first WFTDA regulation game (Newcastle vs Sheffield) which was followed by reffing for the Scottish national mens team which was pretty cool.

Do you have a favourite rule?: Hmm, I don’t have a favourite rule but I do like the unwritten rule of respect that the refs get. I watch a game of football and feel disgusted at the way the players will swarm the ref and shout at him when he makes a decision that doesn’t go their team’s way. Some derby coaches and players can be… shall we say… passionate sometimes, but the respect is always there.

What’s your day job?: I’m a chef. Not much else to say.

What do you like to do off the track?: I play pool for a pub team, I bake awesome cupcakes and brownies and I watch TV. Occasionally I work out. It makes me feel better about eating all the cupcakes.

How has roller derby impacted your life?: I’ve met some awesome people, travelled all over the country (and soon to other countries), I met my girlfriend through derby and it’s given me a lot of profile pictures.

British Champs Tier 3 – KENT ROLLER GIRLS VS GRIN N BARUM

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Images by www.RollerDerbyPhotography.co.uk

We started our campaign for the British Roller Derby Championships in style this weekend  (19th March) with a decisive win. The 6 hour journey to Penzance was worth it as we took the win, 219-109, against North Devon’s Grin N’ Barum. This first game puts us second in the table, with a game in hand over the current leaders Cornwall.

KRG got off to a great start in the first half as Vikispeedia took 20 points in the first jam. We continued to rack up the points as our defensive blockers held back GNB’s jammer to only a handful of points each jam, allowing our jammers to get through. We finished the first half 151-31. Devon’s GNB came out fighting in the second half, with a strong defensive showing, holding our jammers back, and allowing the Devonshire jammers to claw back some points. We continued to fight on and managed to regain some strength in the final jams to finish 110 points up, more of a lead than we were predicted.

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“It’s a great start to our season. We’ve worked really hard to prepare for the game and it really paid off” said our captain, Jennapocalypse.

We will be hoping for another win when we play Bath Roller Girls in Swindon on 24 April ahead of our home game in Herne Bay against Surrey Roller Girls on 21 May.

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Word to the Mother!

Roller Derby skaters come in many forms, ages and genders… and that includes Mum’s!

So this Mother’s Day we’ve asked some of the mums on our team to tell us about how Roller Derby fits in to their family lives:

NATALIE

My girls are still very young (2 and 4 years). I remember the first day I tried on skates and staggered across the room, my 4 year old gasped and told me she was really proud of me! Both my girls are very eager to try it for themselves and I often find them wearing my stinky pads around the house. We were quite an active family already but derby has definitely given me the drive to get fitter and value the importance of fitness. This has obviously rubbed off on my girls. Although we don’t go on family muscle building trips to the gym, our day is full of movement and exercise. I thought being a mum would mean I was unfit and out of shape but I think it’s been the opposite, I think mum’s are far more active than they realise! It is sometimes hard and frustrating when I can’t make a session or even a few sessions because of various child related reasons, but I’ve had to accept the fact that everyone has their own pace, like with anything in life. I just have to fit things in when I can and there’s nothing like doing squats and planks with a 4 year old clinging to your back! They’ve even helped me do press ups by laying beneath me and giving me a kiss on the nose each time

I love having derby as my time too, it’s my 2 hours a week where I am me. Not teacher or mum, just Natalie.

SARAHA

The kids think Derby is great, especially my 7 year old daughter. I think she quite enjoyed a time when we went to our local roller rink in the half term and her friends from school were there, all their mums were sat on the side and they were like “Maisy’s mum has her OWN skates! Maisy’s mum can skate!”. She felt like the coolest kid, I got a taste of what it felt like to be a main leaguer

We aren’t a typical sporty family, my husband doesn’t like football, he rides a BMX, I guess you could say alternative sports are our thing?!. My daughter has her own skates, so we go to family skate sessions together, she loves it. I was never really into going to the gym, it didn’t appeal to me to work out for aesthetic gain, but I want to be strong for derby so it motivates me to pick up the weights and balance on one foot while ironing! Like Nat said it can be frustrating when you can’t fit Derby in due to family commitments, my husband works away quite a bit too so the childcare just isn’t there. I think it is really important when you are a mum to have something just for you, and it is so easy to allow yourself to feel guilty for taking those few hours out but it really does de-stress me and give me a bit of respite. Derby has had a huge influence on the kids. Maisy really enjoys coming to help at the games on the merch stand, or help sell raffle tickets. They see me trying to collect items to for our charities, they see the hard work that everybody puts in for zero financial gain, they see the good that comes of it though. Both the kids have their favourite skater on our team, they both love Jigglytough! I think Maisy really looks up to the team; she has all their line up posters on her wall. I feel really lucky that she has access to such a diverse group of women to influence her, The kids see me come home from practice and I might be a bit frustrated that I felt I didn’t manage to do something, but then a few weeks later the small victory might happen and I get in and I’ll say “I did it!” and we all have a little cheer! So it teaches them that even I am still learning things that are hard, but not to give up and work through it. I’d like to take Doug, who’s 12, to a mens game, but it might be a little loud and crowded for him due to his autism, but I think the men’s team will have a similar impact on him as the ladies have on Maisy.

ELAINE (aka Mama MoHito)

I was forever on my skates as a child in the 1970’s and at university in the 1990’s and I decided in the spring of 2013 that I wanted to teach my children (Oscar now 14 and Jenty now 9). We went to Herne Bay open skate and I began to teach them. Soon after we all bought skates and would attend open skate sessions on the weekends. They are both now excellent skaters and we often skate outside as a family. We have skated in this country, France, Belgium and Croatia. In fact Oscar skated a marathon alongside the team at Goodwood’s Southcoast Roll in 2014.

I saw a poster for Kent Roller Girls and soon googled Roller Derby. I joined KRG Recreational League in November 2013. My family was very encouraging and would listen with delight when I came home pumped from a training session.

Both my children think Roller Derby is amazing and were so pleased for me when I made the Main League. They have attended all my games and wear their KRG T-shirts with pride! Jenty’s favourite player (besides me obviously!) is Rosa Lethal [ed: see image above], she has a cute girl crush on her, making her presents and cards.

Roller Derby has had a positive effect on my family. My husband got into bike riding at the same time I got into Derby and this has fostered a healthy respect in both children for exercise and healthy eating. They also understand a lot about hit and shoulder checks and we can sometimes be seen all doing some moves whilst walking down the street! Oscar has also joined several rugby teams and is very tall and strong so he is an ideal training partner for me.

My family understands the importance of each of us having the right to individual time and hobbies so it has not really impacted upon our family life in that way. I think they probably occasionally get bored of hearing me talk about derby though.

One of the wonderful things about roller derby is that it has taught my children about the diversity of the human race. In particular it has allowed them to understand and appreciate different types of gender identification and human relationships as well as providing my daughter with positive strong role models.

They both understand that Derby is my time and makes me happy so I couldn’t wish for more!

CHERRY

My son saw me on skates at centreparcs and wanted to skate too so I got him some adjustable SFR boots and now we often skate at Bay Arena on Saturdays. He puts on his pads and helmets like me and we skate together. I tell him that when I skate I try really hard but sometimes I fall down, but I get up and try again. He relates to that and I think it sets a good example not to give up when things are tough, and also that girls are fit and strong.

He has also been very active and bounces off the walls if we try and stay at home, so skating together has been a new fun way to be active together. I think it is good for him to know I have my own interests and things I do on my own, and we talk about eating healthily and what foods help our bodies be strong and give us energy to do all the things we want to do.

Being a single parent and working full time I find it very difficult to carve out a few hours a week for me that doesn’t involve endless laundry, checking work emails or taking care of my little person; I find its my biggest challenge. When I get onto the track all of that vanishes and I get to be me just for a tiny bit, concentrating on what I’m doing without a constant clamour of mama-mama-mama-look-mama. I love it but I also find it hard to watch others put more hours in between practice and spending their evening stretching and weight lifting and all manner of things when I don’t have the energy to boil the kettle to make tea.

My son has a set of strong female role models away from bloody Anna in Frozen (not that we’ve ever seen it but still he is obsessed) & dressing up as princesses at nursery. We watch clips of roller derby (Scald Eagle!) and talk about how girls are strong and can jump high, be fast and do anything they set their mind to. And that girls and boys can both skate, can be anything they want to be. He is self confident and won’t be put down. I am worried that come school time this will be lost – and the derbyverse I hope will act as a great counterbalance to stereotyping he might find at school

It’s a huge challenge for me to skate both in terms of fitness and time commitments but it is all worth it the second I get on track and feel the world glide by under my skates. I love Derby and the people I’ve met and I will always try my hardest to carve out that tiny little piece of time for Derby-me to come out to play

 

Competitive roller derby team based in Kent

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