Mildura Weekly : Friday November 29 2013 Vol 8 No 5
Mildura Weekly – 29/11/13 83 www.milduraphonebook.com.au By ADAM LUITJES WITH more than 30,000 mem- bers world-wide, roller derby is fast becoming the largest female amateur sport in the world, and with a freshly formed league, it’s Sunraysia’s turn to experience what the fuss is all about. The action-packed sport is played with two teams of five, roller skating around a track in short bursts called ‘jams,’ and with physical contact and protec- tive gear, it’s similar to American Gridiron – but on wheels – with players using themselves instead of sticks or balls to score points. Mildura Roller Derby League vice-president Nicola Moras ad- mits that roller derby is uncon- ventional, but believes that’s the reason it has created such a cult following. “It’s a sport with an ele- ment of differ- ence,” she said. “The idea is for a team’s quick- est skater to be- come the ‘lead jammer’ and skate around the track whilst the other four players block for her. “Scrimmag- es go for two minutes of ab- solute chaos, and because of the high intensity action it’s become an international sensation.” Although it has experienced a humble beginning in Sunraysia, Nicola believes the game has the potential to take the region by storm. “Roller derby has a big fu- ture in Sunraysia,” she said. “The MRDL was formed in 2011, but it has been only recently that we have witnessed a rapid rise in numbers. “We now have 19 official members, and every week we welcome new players, so the signs are very encouraging.” Nicola says a big effort pro- moting roller derby has success- fully lifted the profile of the sport in Sunraysia, and she believes it won’t be long before MRDL will be at competition standard. “The standard of the league is definitely improving,” she said. “At the moment we are only training, because the majority of the girls haven’t got the confi- dence or skills to be competition ready. “The goal is to be able to compete against leagues like Broken Hill and Bendigo next year, and then eventually run our own competition.” Nicola’s involvement with MRDL started 10 months ago, and she says that despite her inexperience, she has enjoyed every minute being a part of the league. “I am a roller derby addict,” she said. “A friend recommended roller derby as a fun way to keep fit, and I didn’t like netball or the gym, so I decided to give itago. “I had only roller skated twice before, but once I completed my fundamental skills training I gained confi- dence and fell in love with the game.” With the MRDL offer- ing basic roller derby and skat- ing training, Nicola is urging all Sunraysia women to give the sport a go. “We’d love to see plenty of new faces,” she said. “For the inexperienced skaters we hold ‘fresh meat’ fundamental coach- ing sessions to teach correct technique in an encouraging, safe environment. “Roller derby is a fun, physi- cal activity that caters for people of all abilities and fitness levels – plus it’s an amazing workout.” The MRDL ‘fresh meat’ fun- damental sessions are held at the Sun City Rollerama every Sunday from 4pm. More information is available by contacting Nicola on 0409 656 669. It’s fast, it’s physical, and it’s fun... it’s been called American Gridiron on wheels. There’s 30,000 enthusiasts world-wide, and now the call has gone out to our female readers... Get your skates on! • DERBY DAY: Mildura Roller Derby League participant Sam McCoy leaps over fellow skater Thelma Vlamis, ABOVE. Roller Derby is considered one of the fastest rising sports on the planet, with local members pictured in action. Photos DARREN SEILER and RENEE IERINO. Book your Classifieds online It’s Easy and Secure! Just go to www.milduraweekly.com.au and follow the prompts. Your Classifi ed will appear in the selected editions of The Mildura Weekly, as well as online.
Friday November 22 2013 Vol 8 No 4
Friday December 6 Vol 8 No 6