Maryborough Roller Derby members training at Aldridge State High School.
Maryborough Roller Derby members training at Aldridge State High School. Contributed

Strap your skates on for rollicking good time

THEY are the fast and furious on skates but away from the track, members of the Maryborough Roller Derby are just your professional business people, housewives and working mums.

This dedicated team is looking for new members and players, and will hold a six-week, learn-to-skate program in June.

The MRD committee were recently granted a Get Going grant and have just bought 12 sets of gear including skates, knee pads, and helmets - all the protective gear.

"People will have the opportunity to sign up and see if it is something they can do," MRD committee president Renee Hatherell said.

"There is a commitment to train and get to competition level - it's a great opportunity.

"We have some players who are ready to compete but are holding off for our first bout - they are also helping and training our newer members."

Renee, aka Busty Nock'erz, said the MRD first formed in 2012.

"Our major hurdle is not having a venue to bout or to showcase roller derby," she said.

"We need a place that will have room for the track, a five-metre safety area plus spectator space - if anybody has a suitable space please contact us.

"One of our goals is to bring teams to Maryborough and showcase what roller derby is and to help boost our local economy - show off our town."

Busty Nock'erz said the sport was for men and women of all shapes and sizes, over 18 years.

"Don't be afraid to check it out - there's a lot of safety involved," she said.

"You don't have to be a player to be a part of roller derby - we need scorers, referees, spectators.

"What attracted me to the sport is that rivalry is expected and it's not nasty - I love the camaraderie between players.

"I couldn't skate at all - zero experience - now I can backwards skate, I can jump, and I can fall spectacularly and make it look good.

"There has been a lot of development and confidence building - and a lot of falling but I just keep getting back up."

Roller derby facts

  • Roller derby is a contact sport played by two teams of five members roller skating in the same direction around a track
  • Gameplay consists of a series of short match-ups (jams) in which both teams designate a scoring player (the jammer) who scores points by lapping members of the opposing team
  • The teams attempt to assist their own jammer while hindering the opposing jammer - in effect, playing both offence and defence simultaneously