By granitecityrollerderby, Mar 29 2018 01:19PM

We are super excited to be hosting a double header this weekend (Saturday 31st March)!

The first game will feature Rising Stars not only from GCRD, but also from Mean City, Fair City, Helgin , Inverness and the Orkney Viqueens.

Following this will be an interleague game, where Hawkward take on the Rowie Rollers, with teams made up of skaters from the Northern Fights and Fight Hawks, as well as Inverness and Helgin.

Before the game we caught up with Hit Me Speirs, an Inter at GCRD who has recently passed her mins and is playing her first game in the RIsing Stars, Mr Krust, the Northern Fights brand new Bench, and Peggy Kruger, who is making her reffing debut!

I’m really excited but also nervous about my first ever game. It definitely helps that we are all in the same boat. I’m looking forward to meeting lots of new people but I’m really pleased that Becca is on my team and that we have familiar faces on our bench.

I think I’ll mainly be focused on having fun, I tend to be quite hard on myself so I want to focus on staying positive and enjoying the experience. It will be good to put all our training in to practice. Fingers crossed I remember some of it when we get out there!

Hit me Speirs

My first ref game is approaching and I'm filled with both nerves and excitement! I'm excited to wear stripes and join the reffing world. I'm nervous that all the rules I have been learning will be forgotten when I need them most.

I have been learning to ref for just shy of two years. Mama Mags was my first tutor and I learned so much from her. I'm now under the tutelage of Buffy Boiler who will HR my first game. I'm lucky to be in a crew of dreams for my first game, working with people I have looked up to for ages.

At the moment, and because I'm still new in my ref journey, jam reffing has been my favourite.

I'm looking forward to working the pack (pipe dream right now!).

Wish me luck!

Peggy Krueger

Taking on the role of bench coach for the Northern Fights has been an absolute dream! The team had a great 2017 but with some changes in the roster, this year is all about resetting and settling in new players so I've felt very privileged to be a part of that.

My past experiences in refereeing and announcing actually helped a lot as those roles teach you rules knowledge and observation skills, two things that a bench coach absolutely needs! The Fights make my role so easy as they are a fantastic unit and really do epitomise the ethos of a unified team.

Mr Krust

We are also super excited to welcome Krusty back on track! Here's what she had to say about her first game back as captain of team "Hawkward".

My last game I played was September 2016 and I was probably at my fittest with the continuation of physio and off skate training to help my ACL recovery after surgery.

A blow came when diagnosed with breast cancer early 2017, treatment and recovery gifted me with a year off skates but as I was fit going in to treatment, it’s helped my recovery.

Sprinkle a lot of support from friends and family, with a side of pure determination and defiance, I return to play this Saturday as Captain of ‘Hawkward’ one of our interleague teams.

I have had to ‘manage’ side effects of the on going treatment, tiredness and fatigue are the more testing effects of medications and it can be hard to get yourself to training.

I have to say, I’m pretty excited to return and share the track with Hawks and Fights, also with some Helgin and Inverness skaters, two leagues I absolutely adore! Also, I get to watch my husband play his first game! And we have visitors from Orkney, I am going to be so damn giddy on Friday!! I can not wait!

I’ve not missed too much by being off skates, I always try and stay as included in the league as I am able, so I have always felt part of the team, I still managed to LUM the Fight’s in 2017 and coach our newbies when able. The Fights were so understanding, patient and supportive, allowing me to continue in my role as LUM even when they knew there may be times I would not be able to attend games. I thank them for that as it meant the world to me. And the whole league has been amazing!

How did I prep for this game?

Most would say by going to the gym and pounding cardio and weights, not me…

I’ve prepped for this game by buying face paint, new leggings and some water.


Head down to the Beach Leisure Centre this Saturday (31st March) at 12.30 for two games of amazing Roller Derby!

By granitecityrollerderby, Mar 27 2018 05:05PM

On Saturday 31st March GCRD will be hosting a ‘Rising Stars’ game. This game is an amazing opportunity for newer skaters to get some bouting experience.

We are going to have the absolute pleasure of featuring 9 skaters from Orkney ViQueens Roller Derby as part of this ‘Rising Stars’ event. You read that correctly, 9!

I spoke with the lovely DeafWish from Orkney ViQueens in order to see how their league is feeling about this Orkney invasion.

Can you tell me what scrimmage opportunities you have in Orkney?

As a new league we have only recently got folk past mins. We have spent one practice a week for the past month trying some gameplay stuff, but with only 11 mins passed, not all of whom can make every session it’s been hard!

We don’t have any refs, and as we also don’t have any experienced skaters we are learning as we go – with each session collecting a list of things for us to check in the rules! Hopefully as more skaters pass mins, and we all travel to games and scrims with neighbouring leagues it will get easier for us.

Have you or any of your teammates played in a public game before or will this be a first?

Judas played in a closed door game for the Gents in Pink V Inhuman league 6 weeks ago, but that’s it – we’ve not even tried full scrims yet, so the game is going to be a steep learning curve!

It seems like your league has expanded quite a bit Will there be an Orkney fan club coming to cheer on your skaters?

We are growing steadily. We have a core group of around 25 to 30 skaters, with new ones coming through regularly. We have one of our newer skaters coming along to cheer us on, as well as a few friends and family so we should have a bit of a ViQueens cheer squad

Do you have any game day goals?

For the ViQueens to hold their own, not foul out and above all, have fun!

Anything first game concerns?

Not tripping over the rope (we haven’t had the pleasure of that yet!) A quick poll shows we are all basically terrified we will forget everything we have learnt, or will end up spending most of the game in the penalty box!

Tell me something you’re super keen to try on game day!

To learn from the other skaters, and the experience of having proper refs for a change. Also to see what is required from roles like bench coach and line up manager ready for when we need to train someone! We are hoping we can remember some of the stuff to take back with us and practice ready for the next time!

Thanks DeafWish!

I’m so excited to see you lot hold your own on track. You seem to be going in with a great mindset, having a nice time is my number one rule of derby too.

Can’t wait to see you all on game day!

By granitecityrollerderby, Feb 15 2018 01:19PM

It's been a couple of weeks since the end of the Roller Derby World Cup and most of GCRD's Team Cheer members have come down from the high of seeing so much world class derby. Also we have (mostly) got over the lurgy that hit us when we got back!

So, who inspired us? What games really stood out? I chatted to some of our members to find out.

The best game was the last Scotland game for me. the atmosphere, the support and both teams did extremely well and both fought til the end.

In general I had an amazing time and got to spend time with people that I hadn't seen in a while including people in my league (inters etc).

My biggest inspiration would have to be VDiva. Her blocking is out of this world and her attitude on track is amazing. I wanna be able to one man block like her!


I had such a great time at the world cup! Got to spend time with some fab friends and leaguemates and it was so inspiring to see so many amazing skaters on track showing off the skills that got them there.

The atmosphere of the event itself was incredible, one of my favourite parts was hearing the fans from different countries doing their own cheers and chants.

I loved supporting Team Scotland but we also had the pleasure of watching and (loudly!) supporting our own ThunderKads when she played in the Team Baltic exhibition game. Definitely one of my favourite moments, so proud!!

Lara Craft

The best games were any that were ridiculously close, nail biting til the end.

It was awesome to see and meet international skaters that I admire so much.

The general atmosphere from everybody was very friendly and just felt like a really good happy place to be.

Foxy Blocks

I had the best time, it was so inspirational to see people u know SKATING IN THE WORLD CUP, it made something that would normally seem so enormously out of reach a goal that could actually be put on a list.

I was star struck from the second we got there squealing like a wean when I spotted skaters from my Instagram!

I was super proud to cheer for Kadri and it just made it all that wee bit more special.

Oo oo and it was so fab to meet a skater from another league and adopt her for the weekend, new pals are always good xx


Absynthe Minded

By granitecityrollerderby, Feb 3 2018 09:00AM

Today we bring you a bonus post in the middle of the World Cup.

We have another GCRD skater, #727 Thunder Kads, who is skating in today's exhibition game as part of Team Baltic.

We caught up with her to find out how she's feeling about skating in the World Cup.

How are you feeling about skating at the World Cup?

I'm very excited (and nervous)! Never in my wildest dreams I could have thought of skating at the World Cup at this early in my roller derby journey, even though it's Upcoming Nations Exhibition Game and not part of the main tournament. I really want to take the most of this opportunity and learn more about the game and have fun!

What can you tell us about Team Baltic?
What can you tell us about Team Baltic?

Team Baltic is compiled of mostly Riga Roller Derby players, but also players from Tartu Roller Derby, Auld Reekie and Team Aotearoa and me from Granite City Roller Derby. The team has pretty mixed levels with most players only having played one scrim/bout and a couple of players who have a lot more experience. Our aim is to play a great game and have fun.

Will you have a chance to play together before your game?

We'll meet on Wednesday evening to train on the track for the first time as a team, but not all the players will be in Manchester then. That's not really playing to our advantage compared to Team Israel who have trained together as a team. But then again as our team consists of mostly Riga Roller Derby players, it comes down to players from other leagues on how quickly and efficiently we can adapt.

Who will be there to support you?

My Granite City Roller Derby pals!

What are you doing to prepare for your game?
What are you doing to prepare for your game?

I've been working on passing all my mins (which I've just done yayyy!). I've been watching games on YouTube to learn more about the gameplay and as off skates training I've been running 1-2 times per week as I'm also training for Edinburgh half marathon later this year. When it comes to the actual game day, I don't really know what to expect as it will be my first game. I'll try to not let the nerves take the best of me, so taking a moment to chill and enjoy the game.

Who are you most excited to see play?

Oh man where to start, the list is long! Mutch Mayhem, Lady Trample, ShortStop, Bonnie Thunders, Brawn Swanson, Scald Eagle, Miracle Whips etc etc.. In addition to all the big names, I'm also really looking forward to see our Granite City Roller Derby players, Jo Mamma and Riot represent Team Scotland.

Good luck Thunder Kads, we look forward to cheering you on track!

By granitecityrollerderby, Feb 1 2018 09:00AM

Today we continue our World Cup posts with #407 Jo Mamma, who told us how she's feeling about skating in the World Cup.

How are you feeling about the world cup?

I’m looking forward to being part of such a big event, and hoping to make the most out of watching some amazing teams and skaters. I still can’t believe I’m skating in it!

What are you doing to prepare?

I’ve been working with a PT since about October when I started thinking seriously about injury prevention playing high level games. I got new skates that don’t hurt my feet too (and full length plates!) which has helped a lot.

What has Team Scotland training been like?

I’ve loved training with the Scotland squad – it’s become a regular fixture now and I’m already looking for things to fill that time once it’s over! It’s really shown how to utilise skaters to their best effect, but mostly I feel we’ve really bonded as a team and I’ll be really proud to share the track with everyone. Skating with these guys for 3 hours or more at a time really forces you to up your level.

What have you learned from Team Scotland training that you'll take back to your league?

The very first thing I noticed was that there is no time to do nothing in derby. I think (hope) I got over this quickly and now see ways to make things happen on track rather than waiting for them to happen.

What do you do to prepare before a game?

The team has a really good off skates warm up, but I pretty much just stick my skates on, stretch and warm up edges and I am good to go.

How do you plan to keep ypur energy levels up over 4 days of competition?

I think the adrenaline will carry me through a lot, but other than that I will be sure to take time to myself when I need it and eat well. Nothing fancy.

Who is coming to support you?

My partner Ben (who skates with PoS), my mum and dad, my sister and her boyfriend, and I’m sure a few of the Granite lot will give me a wee cheer or a wave! It’s gonna be fabulous to have what’s essentially a ‘home’ crowd.

Who are you looking forward to playing?

The format of the structure is such that we only know our first 2 opponents (New Zealand and Germany) – after that, we see how the chips fall. It’ll be a really interesting format that all the teams will have to mentally adjust for.

What teams / skaters are you most excited to see play?

I want to see all of the UK teams play for sure. I’m super-duper excited to watch the upcoming Baltic Nations game in which one of our recently mins passed skaters at Granite is skating. I’m also keen to see how Belgium are getting on since the last time we played them. Of course all the final day games are going to be incredible.

What are your plans post world cup?

I’d like to focus on my jamming for Granite. I’m getting really into my strength training so I’ll be using some of the freed up practise time for more of that, as well as being able to do some of my more risky sports again like mountain boarding and park skating. I’d like to have more opportunity to get my figure skates out too, and I’m hoping to do my Institute of Civil Engineers career appraisal. So I won’t be sitting still!

We wish Jo, Riot and all of Team Scotland luck this week!

Photos in this post are courtesy of Len Rizzo.

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