Oi You! Outside Now! EASTBOURNE EXTREME 2019 Brings The Derby To The Beach!

It’s that time of year again. This weekend (13th & 14th July) sees the return of the Eastbourne Extreme roller derby tournament. Taking place on Eastbourne seafront from 10am to 6pm each day with free admission for spectators, merch stalls, snacks and a whopping TWENTY ONE games of roller derby, it’s the highlight of the year in local derby. Saturday this year features a four team women’s tournament, a three team men’s/open to all Sevens tournie and a trio of juniors games. Sunday offers up six mixed league games, featuring rookie, intermediate and advanced level skaters from all over the country, as well as more juniors action.
    You can find all this derby loveliness at the Cage, hard sports courts roughly halfway along the promenade between the Pier and Sovereign Harbour marina. The postcode is BN22 7AA with a cheap car park alongside (a few quid for the whole day) as well as some side street spaces. It’s about 25 minutes walk from Eastbourne train station, but there are plenty of places to stop off on the way, such as after party venue the Crown & Anchor and its near neighbour Fuschardi’s ice cream parlour. The number 99 bus drops off very close to the venue (Fisherman’s Club or Desmond Road stops) and can be picked up from the town centre. Or there’s always the Dotto (tourist land train) from the Pier.
    It’s a Bring Your Own Booze (and soft drinks, food, whatever) event and nearby shops include a Coop, Tesco Express and Best-One, all on Seaside Road about four minutes walk inland. There will also likely be some food stalls a little further east along the prom, where you’ll find other Eastbourne Extreme stuff, such as skateboarding and BMXing, going on. An ice cream van will probably turn up at some point too. There are public toilets (plus drinking water tap) handily located right next to the Cage, although the ladies can have Glastonbury sized queues between games. Sunday’s after party is at the Crown & Anchor near the Pier. Now let’s hear from lots of people about lots of games…

EXTREME FIRST TIMER HYPS SAYS…
This will be my first year at Eastbourne Extreme. I’ve always wanted to go in the past, but it was always just that little bit too far or clashed with something else. This year I’ve moved to South Wales to be with my partner, so I’m a bit closer, and what makes this even better is he’s going to be benching the team I’m playing on. Doing this derby couple life right yo!
    The thought of playing outside didn’t even occur to me until the other week and my first thought was ‘oh no I don’t want to trash my beautiful skates’. So derby mail to the rescue! I lent my old skates to one of my old teammates while she awaited her new pair sent down to me via the network. They’re a different set up and much heavier though, so it’ll be fun learning to skate on those again… and outside – oops!
    I really don’t know what to expect from the weekend but I know it’s going to be a long one. Me and my other half have a British Champs game in Birmingham on Saturday before heading down to Eastbourne that night. I’m then benching the rookie women’s game (the first game on Sunday) for Team White and then playing for La Peste Noire in one of the intermediate games. I’m hoping me and Jay don’t have a domestic over an official review. Seriously though, I’m just looking forward to seeing friends, enjoying the sunshine derby and going the beach afterwards with a celebratory beer and MAXIMUM CHILL. Phew!



SATURDAY: WOMEN’S TOURNAMENT

A main focus of Saturday is the women’s (ie WFTDA gender policy) tournament, which features six 30 minute games. In a rare treat it’s actually going to be the same four teams as last year taking part. Obviously not the exact same squads because that’s not how derby works, but it should be interesting to see how their 2019 results compare to last year’s games. Results were fairly mixed in 2018.
    Brighton’s B-team Rockerbillies suffered three defeats, although often by small margins. The remaining competitors each had one win and one loss against their other opponents, with Surrey taking the title on points differential (or however it’s worked out). It was Eastbourne’s Bombshells who imposed that sole defeat – will the hosts take the title themselves this year? Will Surrey retain? What about Terra Hurtz, the B-team of Chelmsford’s Killa Hurtz? Last year’s Extreme was that team’s public debut, so has a full year of development turned them into title winners? Finally, can the Rockerbillies flip last year’s results on their head and bag the trophy themselves? We’ll find out on Saturday. Here are some words from each team…

ALL GAMES ARE ON TRACK 1
10.00 BOURNE BOMBSHELLS VS TERRA HURTZ
10.45 BRIGHTON ROCKERBILLES VS SURREY
12.30 BRIGHTON ROCKERBILLIES VS TERRA HURTZ
13.15 BOURNE BOMBSHELLS VS SURREY
15.00 TERRA HURTZ VS SURREY
15.45 BOURNE BOMBSHELLS VS BRIGHTON ROCKERBILLIES

BULLET BOMBER (BOURNE BOMBSHELLS) SAYS…
We are super excited for Extreme again this year. It is a lot of work to put on, but it’s so worth it when we see so many people enjoying the event. We are pleased to be inviting back all the women’s teams from last year. It will be interesting to see how we fare against them this year. Bombshells recently played Surrey in British Champs and Surrey took the well deserved win, so we will work hard to even up the scores and have fun while we try. We haven’t played Brighton or Terra Hurtz since last year and it will be interesting to see how we do this year.
    Brighton Rockerbillies have a few skaters we haven’t played before and some old friends who we look forward to seeing on track again. I think it could be a close game. Terra Hurtz are always a little more of an unknown to us as we haven’t played them very many times. They have a few names on their roster who we haven’t seen before. That always makes it harder to predict how the game may go, but also makes it extra interesting.
    The Bombshells team hasn’t changed much since last year, but we will have the added excitement of being able to have our age 16+ Team GB juniors join the Bombshells in our last game of the day against Brighton. We can’t wait to skate out with them in Bombshell tops and they are definitely the players to watch! Eastbourne Extreme is the most important event of our year. We love seeing loads of the derby community all at our favourite place to skate.

THE GOLDEN SNATCH (SURREY ROLLER GIRLS) SAYS…
Last year at Eastbourne was a real ‘cherry on top of the cake’ moment for a lot of us at Surrey. Having taken a season out of British Champs to grow and develop as a team, we came to Eastbourne with the aim of having fun and gelling even more as a team. It was tough and HOT! We all rocked our denim shorts as we took on some of our favourite teams in super fun games. To come out as the winners was such a joyful moment for us and it felt like the perfect end to a season of growth.
    This year, as defending champions who are also back in Champs, we’re bringing the fire, the fierceness, but most importantly the fun. (And sun cream. Also important). Our roster has been shaken up a fair amount. We have some amazing rookies who have come up the ranks, and we’ve adopted some cracking pals from Croydon, but we are still unapologetically Surrey and determined to uphold our reputation as a fun and lovely team to play.
    We can’t wait to see our Brighton pals – it’s been so long! We’ve beaten them every time the last few bouts BUT they push us so hard and improve every time so we’re not at all complacent. Terra Hurtz are a super strong team who work incredibly well together and have smart tactics; they’ll be a challenge for sure. And of course the babes of Eastbourne; they beat us by a whisker last year, but we got them back at Champs. Who can say who will win the third round?
    You can expect us to be strong, loud, occasionally scrappy and chaotic but in our own special way. We are all so different on and off the track and that diversity is one of our greatest strengths. It makes us unpredictable, it makes us strong, it makes us family. And yes, fun is a big priority… but we want to lift that trophy again. See you on the track for high fives and hard hits, and see you on the beach afterwards. Bring on EE 2019, we absolutely cannot wait!

SLAMATEE (TERRA HURTZ) SAYS…
Last year was the first tournament for our newly formed Terra Hurtz, and we loved every minute of it! The event was the highlight of our 2018 and we are so happy to have been invited back this year to meet the same opponents. Playing outdoor derby is rewarding as many of our skaters love the opportunity to try something new, and the whole weekend offers something for everyone. We’re looking forward to weird suntan marks, lots of cheering and an excellent selection of supporter attire.
    We are delighted to have some new skaters with us on track this year. Keep your eyes peeled for Cherry Bomb and Gemolition, our dangerous blocking duo, in particular. Our speed demon jammer Liannabal Lector is also one to look out for, but blink and you’ll miss her! We have been training hard this year and are fresh from our win at home last week, so watch out for our power walls and tough-nut offense. We will be catching any rogue jammers, don’t you worry. And remember our chant: HYDRATE, GYRATE.

VARIOUS BRIGHTON ROCKERBILLIES SAY…
SLAP DASH:
This is a really exciting event for us because we’re mixing some of our more experienced players with some of our newest B-teamers. We’re hoping having three games will give everyone some really valuable game experience and we’ll do our best to learn and develop from each game. In terms of tactics I don’t want to give too much away. We had a group viewing of the footage from our last game against Glasgow which was really helpful and gave us some great things to work on together. Look out for a certain offence strategy that we will be debuting.
    G-FORCE: With a mixture of levels in the squad we’ve had to adapt some of our tactics to fit everyone’s style of play. We’ve been working hard on making sure our defence is strong and coordinated as we know the Eastbourne Extreme teams can hit hard. We also have some great offence up our sleeves to ensure our jammers are free to rack up those points. Last year as one of the new Fresh Meat intake I came to watch the Rockerbillies at Extreme. The whole event is so different to any other games I’ve seen or played, not least because it’s outside which is scary in itself. It can be really draining playing in full sunlight and having three games spread over the day, but I think that does bring out the best in our team. Everyone looks out for each other and makes sure we all stay sun creamed and hydrated (whether we like it or not!). Plus what’s better than the traditional team dip in the sea after the day is done? It’s how every roller derby game should end!
    GOLDIBLOCKS: Last year was a whirl of sun cream, hot tarmac, hotter denim, cool shades, ice cream breaks, fantastic announcers, cooling off in the sea – did I forget to mention roller derby in that? It was a great day and we all had loads of fun, despite losing all our games! Our opponents were really experienced and very strong, so despite our best efforts and some amazing jamming, we found ourselves behind in each game. The intense heat also didn’t help matters. As we’re playing the same teams as last year, we’re feeling much better prepared as we know what we’re likely to be up against.
    As with the run up to last year’s Extreme, we’ve had a fair amount of change on the team recently, so for quite a few it will be their first experience of the tournament. We’ve been working hard so we’re feeling ready for the challenge. We know the other teams are likely to be bigger than us, but we know how to use our size and speed to our advantage – and let’s face it, size isn’t everything. Our aim for the games this year is to close the gap in the scores between us and our opponents, to use the new tactics that we’ve been drilling hard, and as ever, to have fun and learn.



SATURDAY: MEN’S/OPEN TO ALL SEVENS TOURNAMENT

Saturday’s men’s/OTA tournament follows the Sevens ruleset and features three teams rather than the four that took part last year. Eastbourne’s own Bomb S’Quad line up against the returning Surrey Jammerwockies. The third side is a special EE19 team composed of players from various different leagues. Let’s hear from them all…

ALL GAMES ARE ON TRACK 1
11.30 BOMB S’QUAD VS EE 19 TEAM
14.15 BOMB S’QUAD VS SURREY JAMMERWOCKIES
16.30 EE19 TEAM VS SURREY JAMMERWOCKIES

BULLET BOMBER (BOMB S’QUAD COACH) SAYS…
Last year’s tournament was great fun as Eastbourne Extreme always is. We are pleased to be able to invite Surrey back again this year. Our teams have always been close and we love playing them. As well as Surrey we will also be playing the EE19 Team, who are made up of some familiar names. We think both games will be quite tough. Our team has some new skaters playing this year alongside some of the founding members and some of our derby friends.
    The Bomb S’Quad have not played any games this year so everyone’s looking forward to getting back on track together. Eastbourne Extreme is the most important event of the year for all of the Eastbourne teams. It is a chance for our friends and family to see us play as it’s our only hometown venue. It’s also a brilliant opportunity to recruit new local skaters as it’s an outdoor event with lots of passers by who are interested in extreme sports. This is so important to help keep building the league year on year.

SURREY ROLLER DERBY SAY…
Both Surrey leagues (ourselves and Surrey Roller Girls) have a tradition of attending Eastbourne Extreme. It’s our most anticipated event of the year being such a melting pot – often literally – of everything roller derby. Despite some big changes to our league, including the fact that Surrey Roller Boys is no more (we’re just Surrey Roller Derby now, mixed and open to all) we weren’t going to pass up the opportunity to roll out a team at Extreme.
    Surrey Roller Derby have a lot of new skaters in the league who are now starting to bout. The team is excited that EE19 will see Screamadelica’s (#42) first game with the league. She’s already been to a few closed door mixed openers, only raising the anticipation among the rest of us as to what she’ll be bringing to the track. What’s becoming another unofficial tradition is having a few guest skaters for the tournament. This year they’re from Kent and Windsor. We are extremely grateful for their last-minute support and are looking forward to getting to know them over the weekend.
    A much loved and respected member of our league and the community recently passed away suddenly and unexpectedly. Brother Lee Shove had an active, leading role in our league as well as being involved with the local junior league, London Skate, and regularly attending all of the roller discos in the area. He will be sorely missed, and many skaters will be holding him in their hearts and minds over the weekend.

THRASH UNREAL (EE19 TEAM) SAYS…
I’ve been playing roller derby for nearly five years now and this weekend is my first time skating at Eastbourne Extreme. I’m a little bit apprehensive, not because I’m worried about the outdoor skating (I’ve got a lot of experience skating outdoors, having done the London Street Skate a few times and spent a fair bit of time in skate parks) but because I’m actually playing seven games over the weekend. That’s between the OTA/men’s tournament, skating for Surrey Rollergirls in the women’s tournament and playing two pickup games on the Sunday.
    This will also be my first time skating with all of the other skaters on the EE19 team – despite playing a lot of pickup games in my time I’ve never skated with any of them, and on top of all that it’s my first Seven game as well! Looking at the other two rosters, I’d say the one to watch from Eastbourne is SpankMeSideways, he’s always a laugh whenever I’ve skated with or against the Bomb S’Quad, and if last year’s anything to go by he’ll do the entire thing with old-school hockey socks on over his skates again. The sweat must be unreal! From the Surrey side watch out for Jam Tart’s ridiculous level of skill on skates and the contortion acts he manages to pull as a jammer.
    I did actually make it along to Eastbourne last year but I was on crutches after breaking my ankle falling off a skateboard, so I’m incredibly hyped to actually be there on skates this year! My best mate’s coming along (AND WILL BE STAYING OFF SKATES, FURY, IF YOU’RE READING THIS), there’s gonna be plenty of chances to catch up with old friends and make some new ones, and I’m planning on a nice cooling dip in the sea on the Saturday afternoon once I’m done skating. I’ll also be doing a bit of announcing too, so listen out for my dulcet tones over the PA. It should be a pretty amazing weekend!

SATURDAY & SUNDAY: JUNIOR TOURNAMENT
The event’s third tournament takes place over both mornings of Extreme on the venue’s second track. This features three junior squads that include a host of players who took part in last summer’s Junior World Cup in Philadelphia. Team Purple are Eastbourne Roller Derby’s own New Bournes. Team White are Devon All Star Hitters plus skaters from Malmö, Cardiff and Manchester. Team Black is composed of Hereford Poison Berries plus skaters from Sheffield and elsewhere.

SATURDAY @ TRACK 2
11.00 BLACK VS WHITE
11.45 BLACK VS PURPLE
12.30 PURPLE VS WHITE

SUNDAY @ TRACK 2
10.30 PURPLE VS BLACK
11.15 PURPLE VS WHITE
12.00 WHITE VS BLACK

RACHELL (TEAM PURPLE) SAYS…
I’m RacHell #16 and I skate for New Bournes Roller Derby. I’ve been skating since May 2017 making this my third Extreme but the first that I will properly be competing in. My first Extreme I had a broken wrist and last year I was preparing for the Junior Roller Derby World Cup so didn’t want to risk an injury. Extreme is one of my favourite times of the year as it brings together so many skaters from so many parts of the UK and puts us all in the strange situation of skating outdoors, something that puts everyone out of their comfort zone. Most importantly though it reminds me of how proud I am to represent Eastbourne Roller Derby as the weekend never fails to impress.
    I’m lucky enough to be skating with both the juniors and the adults this year, meaning I have a number of teammates to feel very safe with on track. From the juniors I would warn skaters to be wary of Jemma English #10 as it’s one of her last chances to represent New Bournes so I’m certain she’ll be giving it her all. I would also keep an eye out for Lan-kill-shire #514 and i meant to do that #84 as they have both passed their level 3 minimum skills only very recently but definitely don’t skate like it! There isn’t any specific skater people should look out for on our women’s roster as when we work as a team we’re all as good as each other. However, we have been working very closely on our offence, so maybe you’ll get a glimpse of some of our offensive tactics on track.
    As for our opponents in the junior tournament, I think we are definitely in for a challenge. On Team White there is Team Europe skater Vilda #04 who is more solid than a brick wall, as well as Giraffic Jam #8, a fellow Team GB jammer that could get past almost any wall. For Team Black the two names that stand out for me as the biggest threat are sisters Marnie Moo’vova #143 and Hi Velocity #342 who also skated last year with me for Team GB. They are both as agile and sturdy as each other, being very versatile and experienced skaters.
    As the only adult game I will be competing in this weekend is against Brighton Rockerbillies I am very happy as they are all friendly faces. I hope that the pressure doesn’t get to me too much as I’m aiming to be one of Eastbourne Roller Derby’s top jammers for EE19. I’m sure the weekend will be very successful as per usual, hopefully bringing in an even larger crowd than last year.

SUNDAY: MIXED LEAGUE GAMES
Sunday is dominated by six mixed league games spanning the skill levels. Here they are in handy chronological order:

10.00 WOMEN’S ROOKIE GAME @ TRACK 1
BLACK WIDOW VS WHERE’S THE BALL

KITTY LESTRANGE (BLACK WIDOW) SAYS…
This is my first-time skating at Eastbourne Extreme, but my fourth time attending. I’ve been skating for four years and have broken both of my legs at different times in that period, one break worse than the other. Since 2018 I’ve been working hard towards re-passing my minimum skills, and last week I finally did it! This is my first ever game and to say that I’m excited is an understatement. I cannot wait to see all of my hard work pay off as I finally play my first game of roller derby at an event that I absolutely love.
    Extreme is an amazing event that me and my boyfriend now always try to attend. It’s a perfect blend of sun, sea and derby. I’m not going to lie; when I first watched people skating and competing outdoors it genuinely terrified me. Watching people land on the concrete then get straight back up to continue playing put a lot of confidence in me – if they could do it, then so could I. I’ve only started skating outdoors this year in preparation for EE. I was sure there was no way that I’d be able to do it, but after more and more practise it became easy. I’m still slightly scared, but it’s more excited/scared now.
    To be honest Team Black Widow hasn’t really talked tactics or anything yet. As we’re playing in the women’s rookie game, for a lot of us this will be our first experience of something like this, so we have no idea what to expect during the game. I’m sure a lot of us are just hoping to survive the whole game haha. I have every faith in my team that we’re going to do everything we can, and give it 110% during the whole event. We’re going to be looking out for the sweep on our own team and watching for the offence and star passes that might slip by us.
    I’m expecting to have the absolute time of my life experiencing a derby game for the first time. I play with my own team a lot and train against high level skaters every Friday with Devil Dogs Roller Derby (Stoke-on-Trent), so this will be a nice change to play against skaters of my own level. As for the weekend I’m looking forward to nothing but sunshine, fish and chips by the sea and experiencing new things. There are eight of us travelling down this weekend to either play in or NSO the games. I’m excited to be spending my weekend, and my first playing experience, with my fellow teammates and friends.

11.30 MEN’S INTERMEDIATE GAME @ TRACK 1
THE ABLOCKADOS VS YOU’VE BEEN TANGOED

LAW HAVE MERCY (THE ABLOCKADOS) SAYS…
I first attended Extreme in 2017 as an NSO, but I took part in the Saturday tournament at last year’s event with my old league, the Surrey Roller Boys, who are playing again this year. I always have a blast at EE. It’s rare to have the opportunity to do some outdoor skating and (although it’s harder work on the legs and can be punishingly hot in the summer) it’s dead good fun having a bit of skatey bash by the beach. There’s always loads of top folk around at Extreme too.
    The aBlockados are composed of skaters from leagues all over at varying levels, some of whom I’ve never skated with before. Bear Skillz from Lincolnshire Rolling Thunder and Boomstick from Dorset Knobs are both very speedy, jukey jammers who can be points machines if the opposing wall don’t watch out. We blockers will be sticking to the basics to begin with and playing it by ear depending how the game pans out.
    You’ve Been Tangoed have got some pretty handy skaters too. My old teammate Jam Tart is a seasoned street skater who jams like Stretch Armstrong (you can hit him but he’ll bounce right back) and Crush of Blood is a literal juggernaut – nobody wants to get hit by him. I expect a physical game, but we’re ready for whatever they have in store for us. It should be a really fun game. I expect the usual from Eastbourne: sun, sea and tons of fun.

13.00 WOMEN’S INTERMEDIATE GAME 1 @ TRACK 1
YELLOW IS IT ME YOU’RE LOOKING FOR VS DABBA DEE DABBA DIE

SWEETNESS AND FIGHT (YELLOW IS IT ME) SAYS…
I have only been to last year’s Eastbourne Extreme, but it was so much fun I wanted to come back this year and many more to come. It’s a really fun-filled event. Although I was terrified of playing outside the first time, in practice it was fine. I don’t have experience skating with or against many of the skaters in the game I’m playing, so I can’t really give any tips on skaters or tactics to look out for I’m afraid. All I can say is I’m expecting lots of hitty fun in the sun with great people from all over the country. This is definitely one of THE places where people at all levels can play and watch roller derby, meet other skaters, and share a love of the sport.

13.15 WOMEN’S INTERMEDIATE GAME 2 @ TRACK 2
BOURNE REDDY VS LA PESTE NOIRE

THE GOLDEN SNATCH (BOURNE REDDY) SAYS…
This is my second year skating at Eastbourne Extreme, although it’s my first time playing in one of the Sunday games. It really is a derby ‘bucket list’ item – everyone should do it! Last year I was super scared about playing outdoors, but ultimately I just had to adjust a few things and it turned out fine. Taping my fingers was a good idea though: hot tip for newbies. In terms of our team (Bourne Reddy), keep an eye out for Lily Malicious and Amazing Graze – they’re Eastbourne players and wicked sharp jammers to boot. I’m glad I’m not blocking them for once!
    As for our opponents La Peste Noire, their squad includes five or six of my Surrey teammates. They’re all brilliant so I’m utterly terrified. Watch out for Moni Bitchell’s hits (they HURT) and the gorgeous footwork and jukes of Top DPS. Plus if you see me running away it’s because I don’t want to block Boo-dica, she’s too strong. Help me. If I survive that game I’m also super pumped to be benching the advanced game for the Pink Panthers, and then jumping directly into the sea with my pals afterwards. Bring on the sun cream, post-bout ciders, and John Hesse’s excellent photography. (He’s the only person I am willingly photographed by in derby, to be honest.)



14.30 MEN’S ADVANCED GAME @ TRACK 1
BLUE STEEL VS MAULIN’ ROUGE

BLIZZARD OF OZ (MAULIN’ ROUGE) SAYS…
I’m Blizzard, a blocker with Kent Men’s Roller Derby. This will be my fourth Eastbourne Extreme and the fourth year I came up with the team name, so even if we don’t win the game I still feel like a winner. In 2016 I was expelled for leaping contact, but we won, so that was ok. In 2017 the format was changed to Sevens and we could form our own teams, so I put together an unstoppable force and we were unstoppable. In 2018 we were back to the standard format, which is much fairer on everyone and makes the games closer, making it more exciting to watch. This year we’re in the standard format again and I’m looking forward to some tough competition.
    Eastbourne Extreme is as much a social get together for all our friends as it is a competition. Even if I couldn’t skate I would still come down to enjoy the sunshine and company. Eastbourne Roller Derby always puts together a top class event, the only one of its kind. I’ve skated outdoors on this kind of surface since the early 80s, so the surface isn’t new for me or most of the older skaters, but I understand that people who have learned to skate indoors and have never been on tarmac could find it a bit daunting – a good amount of off track practice always pays off.
    The men’s advanced teams this year are made up from some top skaters, so we can expect some big hits and extremely fast play. We on Maulin’ Rouge will be looking to keep it nice and clean, stay together and, like, score points and stuff. Watch out for our nippy jammers Alpha Papa and Boomstick; I’ll be doing my best to clear them a path. Opponents Blue Steel will be also trying to score points and they have some very versatile skaters who can block effectively as individuals, so we’ll need to keep them occupied. Watch out for Bang showboating when he gets the star. Citizen Pain is an immovable object, and Mal Pack-a has the strength to push past most walls. What am I expecting? To drink tea, eat cake and skate, in that order.

16.00 WOMEN’S ADVANCED GAME @ TRACK 1
PINK PANTHERS VS BLUE-PERS

SWANN (BLUE-PERS) SAYS…
This is a homecoming to Eastbourne Extreme for me. I was heavily involved with the organisation of the event for the first two years and I skated in the advanced women’s game in the third year, but this will be my first time skating at EE since then. The tournament is super close to my heart. It was the first UK event of its kind, and it’s become a solid part of the UK derby calendar for many. I haven’t skated outside for a while and I fear for the welfare of my toe stops!
    With any mixed team, there tends to be a mish mash of play styles and strategies, so the Blue-Pers will just be looking to have a fun game where we utilise the strengths of our players. I’ve skated with and against a few of the squad before. She Ruthless and I met five years ago in Gran Canaria, and she’s a super strong blocker who I wouldn’t want to jam against! As with our team, I’m sure our Pink Panthers opposition will take a while to figure out tactics. I’m looking forward to skating against Trev as I train with Kent from time to time. It’s always fun to skate against friends, and she’s a great, agile jammer. Mostly I’m expecting sunburn. That’s what I’ve taken away from every Extreme so far, anyway!

FACEBOOK EVENT PAGES
https://www.facebook.com/EastbourneExtremeRD/
https://www.facebook.com/events/224234975146502/

[Photos by John Hesse]

Let’s Take This OUTSIDE! Eastbourne Extreme 2016 ROLLER DERBY Preview!

ee16p1

It’s that time of year again. This weekend (Saturday 16th & Sunday 17th July) large swathes of the UK roller derby community – and many from elsewhere in Europe – will descend on Eastbourne seafront for a two day festival of outdoor derby action. The format for this event changes every year. For 2016, the Saturday features all four of Eastbourne Roller Derby’s teams taking on challengers. Then on Sunday there are five mixed games, featuring skaters from dozens of different leagues in men’s, women’s and co-ed games of varying skill levels. This preview contains a guide to Saturday and Sunday’s events (in chronological order) including some thoughts from folks who are taking part…

HOW TO GET THERE
The action takes place from 10am to around 6pm each day at the Fishermans Green Tennis Courts. That’s a mile along the coast (heading North East) from Eastbourne Pier – use the postcode BN22 7LH in maps apps. There’s car parking adjacent, it’s 25 minutes walk from Eastbourne train station and several local buses stop nearby. Admission is totally free. As well as the roller derby, Extreme has roller hockey, skateboard/scooter ramps and lots of other extreme sports to check out. There are public toilets right by the derby area (expect long queues for the ladies at times) and a few food outlets along the seafront, plus a large landscaped park with lake across the way. The nearest shop for booze and munchies is Spar on the corner of Beach Road and Seaside (about five mins walk). There are also after parties both evenings – a roller disco on the Saturday and pub takeover on the Sunday. Yay!

THE HISTORY OF DERBY AT EXTREME
The Philosofear (ERD):
“Roller derby first appeared at Eastbourne Extreme in 2011. There was an indoor scrimmage and a few jams outside as a demonstration (which I attempted to ref badly!). In 2012 the Bombshells ran a one-day tournament at Extreme. We didn’t take part as we weren’t bout-ready since most of the team hadn’t yet passed minimum skills. In 2013 we were ready to participate and so we had a tournament on the Saturday for newer teams like ourselves, plus one on the Sunday for more established leagues. From there it has grown every year. Now that we are Eastbourne Roller Derby, we like to use Extreme as an opportunity for all of our different teams to play, which means it’s the biggest event in the ERD calendar. But the mixed team games also give skaters from all over the country (and a few from the continent) an opportunity to skate at Extreme.”

WELCOME TO ERDBY
Regular readers might have noticed we’ve changed our identity. This website was formerly called the BBCD (Bourne Bombshells Cheer Division). When we first formed as an unofficial group for fans of roller derby in Eastbourne, the Bombshells were the town’s only derby team. In the past couple of years that has all changed. With the addition of the men’s team Bomb S’Quad, the co-ed A-Bombs and New Bournes juniors – all operating under the banner of Eastbourne Roller Derby – we thought we should change our name to fully reflect our support for all of these teams. So as of this week we are now ERDBY, which as well as being an anagram of ‘derby’ (clever, huh? – or maybe not) also stands for Eastbourne Roller Derby Big Yay! As well as this website, you can find us intermittently posting at facebook.com/erdbigyay and twitter.com/_erdby. Get in touch via erdby@yahoo.com if you like. But enough about us, let’s get stuck into the cavalcade of roller derby that this weekend holds…

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SATURDAY 16TH JULY SCHEDULE

10.00-12.00 MEN’S ROLLER DERBY SEVENS (THREE GAMES)
10.00 ERD BOMB S’QUAD V SCERD WEALD WARRIORS
10.50 ERD BOMB S’QUAD V MEDWAY MAYHEM
11.40 MEDWAY MAYHEM V SCERD WEALD WARRIORS

The day kicks off at a frighteningly early hour (hey, anything before 2pm at a weekend is early for us) with a three team men’s tournament. Derby Sevens is a special format of 21-minute long games with squads consisting of seven players rather than the usual fourteen. This format has proved very popular with men’s teams in the UK as many don’t yet have enough players for a full size squad. Eastbourne’s Bomb S’Quad are taking part, along with two teams from Kent. We caught up with all three sides to find out what to expect…

ERD BOMB S’QUAD
Tenacious P:
“The Bomb S’Quad were established in early 2015 and the past year has seen us have numerous closed door and open door games, most recently in the Roller Derby Sevens Southern Men’s Cup. Our first open door as a team was at Extreme last year where (with a few guest skaters) we took the win over Surrey. We’ve played some of Medway at Team England Sevens back in May and watched them in their games as part of the Southern Cup. They are a hard team to play; they have some great jammers and are as tough as nails. Weald Warriors were also a part of the Southern Cup and are another strong team. We like the Sevens format as it’s quick, tough and challenges you to the limits as you hardly ever come off. As a Jammer (which I am) you tend to do one on, one off – hit a few two minute jams and you soon feel it! I think we have the edge but you never know as both Kent teams have improved so much over the past six months.
    Playing outdoors is a real challenge. The hits hurt more, the sunburn is a killer and endurance is pushed to its limits. We usually have a small advantage as playing outdoors for us starts in June, or even May, but this year the weather has been so bad that we’ve only been outdoors twice. Look out for Pont Blank, our new captain, who is back from his travels with a renewed vigour. Also Animal, one of our newer skaters (and family member of Chasin’ Status), who is one of our most skilled skaters. Extreme is our showcase event. As we’re without a local home venue, this is the time of the year we get to show the people of Eastbourne what we can do!”

SCERD WEALD WARRIORS
BrutAl Deluxe:
“Based primarily in Rochester, Weald Warriors stemmed from Rochester Royal Rollers to become the men’s competitive arm of Southern Co Ed Roller Derby. The Warriors were introduced to the world this year at the inaugural Sevens Men’s Southern Cup. What can we say about Medway Mayhem? Light and shade. Yin and Yang. WW and MM. We have battled Mayhem before and this good-natured local derby derby is guaranteed to entertain. We cannot wait to show the boys next door how we do this on the street. Weald Warriors are yet to go to war with Bomb S’Quad – we look forward to showing these old men of the sea what this young team can do. As a new team building up its player base, the Sevens format has been essential in allowing us to compete with more established teams in a fast, fun and free-flowing format. This will be our first time competing at Eastbourne Extreme, and we’re looking forward to getting to grips with outdoor skating. Get ready for shades, sunshine, and funny pad tan! We will bring the war to Eastbourne Extreme as we look to secure our first win. Watch out for Chandler Bang and his deceptively laid back jamming style, and the double threat vision in pink that is PRO-LAPS.”

MEDWAY MAYHEM
Brute:
“Mayhem was Kent’s first men’s roller derby team when we formed in July 2015. We have played our local rivals Weald Warriors twice in the Sevens format and we currently hold a 2-0 win record. We haven’t faced the Bomb S’Quad but we can’t wait to test ourselves against them! Mayhem hosted both heats of the recent Men’s Sevens Southern Cup tournament. We ended up finishing joint fifth with Bomb S’Quad in that tournament. Eastbourne Extreme has been a calendar event for us. We’ve known of it for a couple of years and we’re honoured to be invited. A few of us play on challenge teams with Tenacious P of Bomb S’Quad and we know how good he is. Also watch out for Crash Mat from the Warriors. Mayhem players to look out for? Well, you’ll just have to wait and see…”

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12.30-14.00 WOMEN’S GAME
ERD BOURNE BOMBSHELLS V BRIGHTON ROCKERBILLIES

[PLEASE NOTE: THERE IS A MORE DETAILED PREVIEW OF THIS PARTICULAR GAME AT THE WEBSITE OF OUR CHUMS BRATS – CLICK HERE FOR THAT] Amazingly the two longest running Sussex derby leagues have yet to meet in an open door game. The Bombshells and Rockerbillies both took part in last year’s Eastbourne Extreme tournament, but didn’t end up playing each other. The two leagues have met a few times behind closed doors, so it will be interesting to see how they match up in front of an audience…

ERD BOURNE BOMBSHELLS
The Philosofear:
“Playing outdoors is something we’re used to as we train outside in good weather for a few months before Extreme. I’d also say we know the Brighton Rockers league pretty well (especially as I’m an ex-Brighton player). A lot of us attend their bouts regularly and quite a few of them have been to our scrimmages. Their B-team Rockerbillies have a few newer players on their roster, who we are not that familiar with, but also a lot of skaters who are well-known to us. I’d say that Lab Wrath and Van Hayley are Brighton skaters to watch out for. I’ve seen both of them play a few times and they’re strong. We’ve also heard that the Rockerbillies have a transfer skater from Helsinki who is a good jammer. For the Bombshells, Beast and Smash’er Fierce are both great blockers who are very hard to get past. Bullet Bomber is a brilliant all-rounder. And Crash’s jamming has been on fire lately. As for our tactics – I’m not telling!”

BRIGHTON ROCKERBILLIES
Van Hayley:
“Last year’s Eastbourne Extreme was crazy! Three games in one day, all in the blazing sunshine. It was really tough and very intense, but it was a great experience. There were a few casualties but we all learnt a lot, and there was lots to see when we weren’t playing. The tarmac is super grippy so it really favours fast, jukey jammers. It also chews through wheels and toe stops pretty quickly! Being outside in the sun by the sea sure beats being inside a leisure centre any day, even if we did all get a bit burnt last year. We love the Bombshells! We’ve played a lot of scrims and closed door games with them and it’s always great. They always give us a run for our money. They’re a really tough team but they’re so much fun to skate with – we’re really lucky to have them so close by! They’re also great to hang out with. We didn’t get to play them at Eastbourne Extreme last time because of the way the tournament format worked out, so we can’t wait for this year. Watch your backs Bombshells!”

14.30-16.00 JUNIOR ROLLER DERBY
ERD NEW BOURNES V EXTREME JUNIORS CHALLENGE TEAM

Eastbourne Roller Derby also has a junior league, the New Bournes. They will be taking on a team of skaters from various other junior derby leagues on Saturday afternoon. The New Bournes coaches have this to say…

ERD NEW BOURNES
Beachy Headcase & Drag N Fly:
“New Bournes have been going for 2.5 years and we now have around sixteen active members aged between 5-17. About half of our skaters are level 3 skaters, which mean they play full contact roller derby the same as adults. The other half are still working their way through minimum skills and play level 2 roller derby, which is more positional with less hitting. The nearest active junior league that we know about is based in Calais! Hopefully we are playing them soon. But we also have friends in Devon (DASH) and Hereford (The Poison Berries). Both those teams are represented during our mixed game at Extreme. There are other teams up and running but the distances are vast! More teams are popping up all the time though. We took a few players to a mixed game in May hosted by Hereford, and another mixed game in Neath last December. We jump at opportunities and are willing to travel! The challenge team we face on Saturday includes skaters who have travelled from Devon, Hereford, Sheffield and even Charleroi in Belgium.
    Derby outdoors is really good fun. It can be a bit slower and it’s rougher when you hit the ground because it’s tarmac not wood/vinyl, but the sea air is lovely and beats playing sports halls. Outdoors eats rubber and chews up pads but we still love it. Obviously we would love to win this weekend, but it’s just exciting for the junior league to finally be able to play in their purple team kit. We have played a few mixed games with the opposing team, but I can truly say that they are all awesome, and junior roller derby is really great to watch. Beyond this weekend, the New Bournes are planning to play our first game against a full team in the autumn, and hopefully we are going to participate in Europe’s first junior roller derby tournament in Copenhagen next Easter!”

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16.30-18.00 CO-ED GAME
ERD A-BOMBS V FULL METAL ROLLER DERBY

Saturday’s action finishes with a co-ed game, featuring Eastbourne’s A-Bombs (a mixture of Bourne Bombshells and Bomb S’Quadders) against Full Metal RD from Stevenage. What can people expect from this game?

ERD A-BOMBS
Tenacious P:
“The A-Bombs are Eastbourne Roller Derby’s newest team. A co-ed (male/female) league, we had our first game at Extreme 2015 where we took a hard fought loss to the much more experienced Portsmouth Scurvy Wenches. A year on and we’ve seen the hard work in practice begin to pay dividends with a win against My Mom (and Friends) and placing third at England Men’s Host Roller Derby Sevens back in June. We’ve not played Full Metal Roller Derby as a co-ed team but the Bombshells played them last year in British Champs and we played a few of them as part of the My Mom game earlier this year. Full Metal Roller Derby have heart and fight, never giving up. That makes them a tough team to play.
    Co-ed is very different to other types of derby. It takes the skill and precision of women’s derby and the power and strength of men’s derby and throws it in together. For me personally, I think it’s a much more fun game to play, where skill is tested against power, speed against force. It has the excitement of the men’s game and the precision of the women’s, with the best players from each league on the track. I think we have a small advantage but the weather has seen only limited opportunity to practice outdoors. The bigger advantage is that we have trained co-ed for over a year now. That’s massive. We know each other and test each other every session. Bullet Bomber is always a skater to look out for, but also keep an eye on Aladdin Sane and Beast who have taken their blocking to a new level this year.”

FULL METAL ROLLER DERBY
FMRD:
“Full Metal is a co-ed league based in Hertfordshire. We’ve been bouting as a co-ed team since the start of this year, but our women’s team has been playing since 2015. A few of us have played against the A-Bombs in a challenge team game. We know that they are a strong team with solid walls and good communication. Co-ed derby is harder hitting than women’s derby, but more tactical than men’s derby. It’s a perfect balance between the two, usually played at super quick speeds. Eastbourne Extreme is legendary in the derby world and we’re really honoured to have been invited to play. The biggest difference is the surface we play on. Skating outdoors on gravel is a whole different world to skating on a smooth wooden sports hall floor. Any bump could send you flying if you’re not prepared! But it’s something we’ve been training for and we’re excited for it. We’ve been working on how to beat the A-Bombs’ favourite cube wall recently, so we feel like it’ll be really evenly matched game and great fun to watch. Close points are inevitable!”

19.00-LATE AFTER PARTY @ MY SKATEWORLD
Saturday’s after party is a full on roller disco at My SkateWorld. This venue is located on an industrial estate a mile or so inland from where the day’s derby takes place – the postcode is BN23 6LY. There will be skating, a DJ, live music and £1 shots of Sourz. Admission is £5 for adults (including a voucher for a free drink) and £2 for youngsters. These can be bought online from ERD or on the door (subject to availability).

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SUNDAY 17TH JULY SCHEDULE

10.00-17.30 MIXED TEAM GAMES (FIVE GAMES)
10.00 ROOKIE WOMEN’S GAME
11.30 CO-ED INTER/ADVANCED GAME
13.00 MEN’S MIXED LEVEL GAME
14.30 WOMEN’S MIXED LEVEL GAME
16.00 CO-ED ADVANCED GAME

Sunday features a rapid succession of full games featuring skaters from various different leagues. Previewing each game individually seemed a bit tricky, so instead we asked a couple of ERD stalwarts to give us an overview of the whole day.

Will Sunday’s games feature many ERD players?
Tenacious P: We are returning to a format we used back in 2014 for the Sunday with mixed teams representing skaters from all over the UK (and a few from Europe). This means you get some of the best league skaters in the country working together on track with each other.
The Philosofear: We have 140 skaters playing in Sunday’s mixed games and 25 of those are from ERD. So it’s roughly 18% ERD and 82% from elsewhere.

What are some of the other leagues who have players taking part?
Croydon are well represented as are newer leagues like Medway and SCERD, but in truth we have people from all over – Portsmouth, London, Oxford, Norfolk… the list goes on.
There are a few leagues with a lot of participants. Southern Co-Ed Roller Derby are very well represented. We’ve also got a lot of skaters from Croydon taking part. CRD have been a huge part of Extreme since the beginning and Extreme wouldn’t be the same without them. Several other teams have quite a few players taking part; Seaside Sirens, Brighton Rockers, Medway Mayhem, Killa Hurtz and Portsmouth. Portsmouth are another team who have a history of involvement in Extreme and they’re one of our favourite leagues.

There are a mixture of men’s, women’s and co-ed games at various skill levels taking place. How are the games likely to differ in terms of pace/physicality/etc?

This year we have our usual rookie game, which is always fun to watch and features a number of players skating in their first ever game. The Intermediate and advanced co-ed games were both massively oversubscribed. We also have mixed level men’s and women’s games. This mix of games and levels makes for interesting viewing with both the women’s and co-ed advanced game being of a very high level. Expect those two to be fast paced whilst the men’s and the inter co-ed will be a bit more physical.
The co-ed advanced game will be the highlight of the Sunday. There are quite a few high level players and it’ll be great to watch. Expect lots of apex jumping, huge hits and fancy footwork! But my favourite game will be the rookie women’s game (which I’m benching). For a lot of the rookies this will be their first time skating outdoors and for some it’s also their cherry popper game. I love the support that rookies often get from friends and family (eg homemade signs and banners) which means a great crowd cheering during the game. And more experienced players often shout advice from the crowd, which makes it all rather loud and fun!

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Are there any particular players taking part on Sunday that the crowd should look out for?
We have Noise Tank and Gin Atomic skating again this year. Both are always excellent fun to watch, and of course look our for the Portsmouth players in the co-ed advanced game who work so well together.
In the advanced co-ed game there quite a few well-known players who are always fun to watch; Noise Tank, Kaizen, Mother Mercy and Hench are all crowd-pleasers. In the inter-advanced women’s game, Tori Bee and Gin Atomic are two of the top players. Both are very strong double threats. In the inter-advanced co-ed game, Tenacious P’s jamming is always amusing – he looks like he’s having so much fun. And I’m hoping to see some big hits from Clark…SMASH and Smash’er Fierce. In the rookie women’s game, expect some strong jamming from new Bombshells InnsterSlam and T-Wrecks. And in terms of blocking, Heisen Bird, Bettsy Bruis’er and Puschifer are ones to watch. In the men’s game, look out for ElderLee’s blocking. Chandler Bang’s jamming is also great to watch – he’s got some fancy footwork.

Is there anything else (other than roller derby) at Extreme that you recommend?
Battle Extreme will be good to check out. This is a slalom skating competition that’s been held at Extreme for many years now. It’s being held right next to the roller derby. It’s run by My SkateWorld who are also hosting our Saturday night after party.

What should spectators expect from the weekend in general?
With two massive days of skating, loads of side events (raffles etc), 50+ officials and two after parties, Extreme 2006 should be the best one yet. There’s also our first dedicated after party on Saturday night this year with skating, music, a DJ and more!
Spectators can expect lots of sun, cake and dogs! (As well as the roller derby of course). As the venue is right on the seafront, bring swimming/beach gear. Plus, if any spectators own skates, bring them! Eastbourne seafront has a skate lane and it’s always fun to grab an ice cream (I’d recommend Fusciardi’s Ice Cream Parlour, which is a short skate away from the Extreme venue – head towards the pier) and go for a gentle skate along the seafront. We have two after parties. On Saturday we have a party and roller disco, with bar, food, DJ and live music at My SkateWorld (which is where Eastbourne Roller Derby have our mid-week training). Then on the Sunday we’ll be heading to the best pub in Eastbourne, our fabulous team sponsor The Crown and Anchor. Their food is amazing!

11.30-12.30 MINI BLOCKING BOOT CAMP WITH GIN ATOMIC & NOISE TANK
Gin Atomic:
“There are twenty spaces available for this one hour mini boot camp aimed at rookie and intermediate skaters. Sign up at the admin desk on the day – first come first served! We’ll be covering three different blocking techniques, including backwards and lateral. Skating outdoors is a good way to practice using your edges, and these three different techniques will help blockers with being more adaptable to the various different types of floor you encounter when playing.”

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18.00-LATE AFTER PARTY @ THE CROWN & ANCHOR
The whole weekend comes to an end with an after party at The Crown & Anchor. This pub is a regular haunt for Eastbourne Roller Derby events. It’s located on the seafront just before (derby side) of the Pier – around 15 minutes walk. Pop along to toast the end of another great weekend of outdoor roller derby.

ALL WEEKEND – LIVE STREAMING ON FACEBOOK

If for any reason you can’t make it down to Eastbourne for this weekend’s action, you’ll be able to watch all of the games via a live online stream. See the links below for more info.

[Photos by John Hesse]

SOCIAL MEDIA LINKS
FB LIVE STREAM: https://facebook.com/EastbourneextremeRD/
FB EVENT PAGE: https://www.facebook.com/events/480442415476756/
ERD ON FACEBOOK: https://www.facebook.com/EBRollerDerby
ERD ON TWITTER: https://twitter.com/ebrollerderby

THE VENUES
FISHERMANS GREEN TENNIS COURTS: https://www.google.co.uk/maps/place/Fisherman’s+Green+Tennis+Courts/@50.7777313,0.3062278,15z/data=!4m2!3m1!1s0x0:0x6545daa5ced75dc7?sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwjc_rOM3PPNAhVEAsAKHQzTANMQ_BIIbjAK
MY SKATEWORLD: http://www.myskateworld.co.uk/
CROWN & ANCHOR: http://crownandanchoreastbourne.co.uk/