Aotearoa Roller Derby

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Aotearoa Roller Derby
Founded2011
LeagueRoller Derby World Cup
ColoursBlack and white
Head coachMick Swagger (coaching manager)
Bruiser (assistant coach)
Justass For All (assistant coach)
ManagerAna Phylaxis
Championships8th place at 2011 Roller Derby World Cup, 5th place at 2014 Roller Derby World Cup
BroadcastersDerby News Network
Websitewww.rollerderby.org.nz/the-team/

Aotearoa Roller Derby is the New Zealand national representative women's flat track roller derby team. It was founded in 2011 as Roller Derby Team New Zealand, to compete in the inaugural Roller Derby World Cup.[1][2]

2011 World Cup campaign[edit]

Roller Derby Team New Zealand competed in the inaugural Roller Derby World Cup, held 1–4 December 2011 in Toronto, Canada.[3]

Selection and build-up[edit]

Roller Derby Team New Zealand Probables v. Possibles bout, 22 October 2011. World Cup MVP, Skate the Muss, second from left.

Roller derby skaters throughout New Zealand were invited to try out for places in the training squad.

The squad met monthly to train in Hamilton.[4] Final selections for the team to travel to Toronto for the Roller Derby World Cup were released after a final training and selection bout between the "Probables" and the "Possibles" in New Plymouth in conjunction with the AoteaRUMBLE roller derby training retreat.[5]

Competition[edit]

Team New Zealand was drawn in Group C, with Team USA and Team Scotland.[6]

  • In their first bout, Team New Zealand was beaten 377:8 by Team USA.[7]
  • In their second bout, Team New Zealand beat Team Scotland 124:111.[8]

Team New Zealand was ranked 9th after the group stage.[9]

  • In the first round of the Elimination stage, Team New Zealand beat Team Germany 142:127.[10]
  • In the quarter final round, Team New Zealand was beaten by Team USA 470:8.[11]

Team New Zealand entered the Consolation Stage at Round 2.

Team New Zealand finished the World Cup in 8th place.

Skate the Muss was awarded the title of MVP for the team.[14]

2011 team roster[edit]

logo as Team New Zealand as used in 2011

The travel team for the 2011 World Cup was announced on Tuesday 25 October 2011.[15] (Skaters' league affiliations as of the time of the announcement)

Number Name League
Axl-Slash-R Northland Nightmares
Bad Jelly the Bitch Pirate City Rollers
Big Mack Pirate City Rollers
Black Panther Dead End Derby
Evil K'Neevil Dead End Derby
Fia Fasi Oe? Pirate City Rollers
Hurricane Hori (Captain) Pirate City Rollers
Lawless Mess Dead End Derby
Miss Chevus Mynx Dead End Derby
Miss Metal Militia Hellmilton Roller Ghouls
Pentakill Pirate City Rollers
Perky Nah Nah Pirate City Rollers
Pieces of Hate Pirate City Rollers
Poison Petal Hellmilton Roller Ghouls
Poison Pixie Mount Militia Derby Crew
Skate the Muss Pirate City Rollers
Solid Sarge Northland Nightmares
Terror Satana Pirate City Rollers
Tuff Bikkies Richter City Roller Derby
Pieces of Hate (head coach) Pirate City Rollers
Fia Fasi Oe? (assistant coach) Pirate City Rollers
Elle Qaeda (manager) Pirate City Rollers

2014 World Cup campaign[edit]

Roller Derby Team New Zealand competed in the 2014 Roller Derby World Cup, held in Dallas, Texas on 4–6 December 2014.[16]

Selection and build-up[edit]

The selection process for the 2014 team was fraught with controversy. The first issue was the decision by the New Zealand Roller Derby Association (NZRDA) to require that the coach of the team not be a skating member of the team. As roller derby is a young and rapidly evolving sport, this considerably restricted the pool of candidates for the position as most of the people with the best understanding of the rules, tactics and other requirements of the current state of the game were active skaters with a reasonable expectation of being selected to play. Stacey "Pieces of Hate" Roper was appointed to coach the team. Zephyr and Fia Fase Oi? were appointed selectors alongside the coach and Danger Spouse was appointed team manager. Zephyr was also appointed assistant coach.

Try-outs to select a 30-player development squad were held in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch in December 2013. The squad was announced on 23 January 2013 and trained in various locations throughout the country. The final squad of 20 were announced on 9 October 2014.

Bullying and discrimination controversy[edit]

In early October the team manager was removed from her role by the NZRDA board. In a statement to the New Zealand roller derby community she cited "abuse and defamation" from the head coach as contributing to her failure in the role, saying "The entire situation was very unhealthy for me and after a complete failure to effect real improvement I went into emotional hiding".

On 24 October 2014, New Zealand's television 3 News published an interview with Marcia "Meat Train" Taylor about a discrimination complaint she had filed with the Human Rights Commission directed toward the team's head coach. The complaint alleged that Roper had published comments about Taylor on her Pieces of Hate Facebook fan page which showed that Taylor had been unlawfully discriminated against in the selection process because she was hard of hearing.[17] The comment was subsequently removed.

An official statement released on 25 October 2014, by the New Zealand Roller Derby Association (NZRDA)'s Facebook page drew substantial criticism and condemnation from the New Zealand roller derby community. When the situation received attention from international blogs, the NZRDA removed their statements and associated comments from all social media channels; a move that many felt made matters worse.[18] The statement then was displayed on the NZRDA's website, where visitors were unable to leave any public comments or feedback, leading to accusations of censorship.[19]

On 27 October, a Change.org petition was started that called for the immediate dismissal of Stacey Roper as the head coach of Team NZ Roller Derby.[20] The petition was not effective. Roper remained coach and accompanied the team to the 2014 Roller Derby World Cup.

Taylor was invited to join one of two International Vagine Regime (LGBT) teams playing an exhibition game at the World Cup. Taylor's Pangina team won the clash, beating Queerope 260:182.[21]

A feedback survey was circulated within the New Zealand roller derby community in December 2014, but while respondents were thanked for their feedback, no further public statements were made. Several leagues resigned from the NZRDA in the wake of the affair, leaving the association effectively defunct. The NZRDA website registration lapsed in July 2015.

Competition[edit]

Team New Zealand was drawn in Group A, with Team Wales, Team Norway and Team South Africa.[22]

Team New Zealand won all three of their games to emerge top of their group.

In the Round of 16 the team faced the Netherlands, winning 356:91 and advancing to the quarter finals in fifth position.

In the quarter finals they lost 284:56 to Australia, who ultimately placed third, finishing the tournament in fifth place.[23]

2014 team roster[edit]

The travel team for the 2014 Roller Derby World Cup was announced on 9 October 2014.[24] (Skaters' league affiliations as of the time of the announcement)

Number Name League
Terror Satana (C) Pirate City Rollers (Auckland, NZ)
Justass For All (C) Swamp City Roller Rats (Palmerston North, NZ)
Elicia Nisbet-Smith Rose City Rollers (Portland, USA)
Hannah Jennings Rose City Rollers (Portland, USA)
Tank-U Paradise City Roller Derby (Gold Coast, AUS)
Ivy K'nivey Victorian Roller Derby League (Melbourne, AUS)
Serious Crash Unit Otautahi Roller Derby League (Christchurch, NZ)
Nicki Noxious Rogue Rollers (Dunedin, NZ)
Evil K. Neevil Dead End Derby (Christchurch, NZ)
Jem Molition Richter City Roller Derby (Wellington, NZ)
Renee Brown Swamp City Roller Rats(Palmerston North, NZ)
Anna Pave-U'Ova Richter City Roller Derby (Wellington, NZ)
Ashlee Mackenzie Richter City Roller Derby(Wellington, NZ)
Melicious Mayhem River City Roller (Wanganui, NZ)
Lady Trample Pirate City Rollers (Auckland, NZ)
Fia Fasi Oe? K-Town Derby Dolls (Kawerau, NZ)
Miss Metal Militia Hellmilton Roller Ghouls (Hamilton, NZ)
Miss Crunchbull Hellmilton Roller Ghouls (Hamilton, NZ)
Jordon Leah Parore (Skate the Muss) Pirate City Rollers (Auckland, NZ)
Coup D'eTalia Pirate City Rollers (Auckland, NZ)
OrKazzmic (non-traveling alternate) Dunedin Derby (Dunedin, NZ)
Diva DemolisHer (non-traveling alternate) Dunedin Derby (Dunedin, NZ)
Pieces of Hate (head coach) N/A
Zephyr (team selector/assistant coach) N/A
Karen Edwards (team manager) N/A

2018 World Cup campaign[edit]

New Zealand was named as one of the 40 teams to compete in the 2018 Roller Derby World Cup to be held in Manchester, UK. [25]

Team New Zealand organisation[edit]

With no national body or group set up to manage the 2018 Roller Derby World Cup campaign following the collapse of the NZRDA, Team New Zealand veterans Terror Satana and Justass For All began the process of organising volunteers to create an executive group to oversee the campaign, including management, coaching, and selection.

Members from top-level competitive New Zealand leagues including the Pirate City Rollers, Richter City Roller Derby, Dead End Derby, Dunedin Derby, Auckland Roller Derby League, Whakatāne Roller Derby League, and Swamp City Roller Derby were nominated to represent their respective leagues' interests and formed the Team New Zealand Executive Committee in June 2016. This followed an earlier proposal sent to all New Zealand roller derby leagues proposing that this committee be formed.

Later that year, the executive committee opened applications for coaching manager, assistant coach (x2), and team selector (x2) to form the Coaching & Selection sub-committee. Team USA and Victorian Roller Derby League veteran skater and coach Mick Swagger was selected as coaching manager; Justass For All from Swamp City Roller Derby and Bruiser from Dead End Derby were named assistant coaches; and Sugar Hit from Pirate City Rollers and Baddy from Dead End Derby were announced as team selectors.

Team New Zealand try-outs and squad selection[edit]

Try-outs to select from an initial pool of 50 skaters were held in Auckland, Palmerston North, and Christchurch in December 2016. That initial squad was announced on 2 January 2016. A second selection to cut the squad from 50 to 32 skaters took place over one weekend in February 2016, with the selection and announcement of that squad made at the same time. The process and selection of the 32 skaters drew criticism on social media, which the Team New Zealand Executive Committee responded to by introducing changes to their selection policy and process. A final selection to choose 20 skaters from the 32-strong squad for the World Cup charter was completed in July, with the final squad of 20 announced on 18 July 2017.

2018 team roster[edit]

(Skaters' league affiliations as of the time of the announcement)

Number Name League
Anna Pave-U'Ova Victorian Roller Derby League (Melbourne, AU)
Axle Rosé Dunedin Derby (Dunedin, NZ)
Ballistic Button Pirate City Rollers (Auckland, NZ)
Coup D'eTalia Pirate City Rollers (Auckland, NZ)
EVenger Bay City Rollers (Napier, NZ)
Evil K. Neevil Dead End Derby (Christchurch, NZ)
Hui Pirate City Rollers (Auckland, NZ)
Ivy K'nivey Victorian Roller Derby League (Melbourne, AUS)
Justass For All Swamp City Roller Derby (Palmerston North, NZ)
Lady Trample Victorian Roller Derby League (Melbourne, AU)
Little Yellow Jacket Dunedin Derby (Dunedin, NZ)
Mackenzie Auckland Roller Derby League(Auckland, NZ)
maDD Honour Swamp City Roller Derby (Palmerston North, NZ)
Maggie Mayhem Dead End Derby (Christchurch, NZ)
McFeerce Whakatāne Roller Derby League (Whakatāne, NZ)
Riley (Papercut) Pirate City Rollers (Auckland, NZ)
Sugar Hit Pirate City Rollers (Auckland, NZ)
Terror Satana Auckland Roller Derby League(Auckland, NZ)
Tuff Bikkies Richter City Roller Derby (Wellington, NZ)
TutanKarnage Pirate City Rollers (Auckland, NZ)
Mick Swagger (coaching manager) N/A
Bruiser (assistant coach) N/A
Ana Phylaxis (team manager) N/A

Renaming and rebranding to Aotearoa Roller Derby[edit]

After a Team New Zealand training in June, the 32-skater squad, the Coaching & Selection Committee, and the executive committee collectively agreed to rename the team from 'Team New Zealand Roller Derby' to 'Aotearoa Roller Derby.' The executive committee released a statement about the decision, saying that "roller derby communities here and abroad have led the way in terms of progressive inclusivity [and] New Zealand’s roller derby team are proud to continue that tradition by fully embracing our country’s indigenous name". The move was widely praised on social media.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Roller Derby World Cup Teams Roster, "TEAMS | Blood & Thunder Roller Derby World Cup Hosted by Toronto Roller Derby", Retrieved on 9 December 2011.
  2. ^ Roller Derby Team New Zealand Information Page, "Information – Roller Derby Team NZ", Retrieved on 9 December 2011.
  3. ^ Derby News Network, "Scores | Derby News Network", Retrieved 9 December 2011.
  4. ^ The Dominion Post, "Tuff Bikkies up against world's best", Retrieved 11 December 2011.
  5. ^ AoteaRUMBLE 2011 Event Page, "AoteaRUMBLE 2011 – Mountain City Rollers", Retrieved 9 December 2011.
  6. ^ Derby News Network, "Roller Derby World Cup Groups Set" Archived 3 December 2011 at the Wayback Machine, Retrieved 10 December 2011
  7. ^ Derby News Network, "World Cup: USA Hammers New Zealand, 377–8" Archived 29 April 2012 at the Wayback Machine, Retrieved 10 December 2011
  8. ^ Derby News Network, "World Cup: New Zealand Holds Off Scotland, 124–111" Archived 29 April 2012 at the Wayback Machine Retrieved 10 December 2011
  9. ^ Derby News Network, "World Cup Elimination Round Set" Archived 5 December 2011 at the Wayback Machine, Retrieved 10 December 2011.
  10. ^ Derby News Network, "World Cup: (9) New Zealand Upsets (8) Germany, 143–127" Archived 29 April 2012 at the Wayback Machine, Retrieved 10 December 2011.
  11. ^ Derby News Network, "World Cup: (1) USA Flattens (9) New Zealand, 470–8" Archived 29 May 2014 at the Wayback Machine, Retrieved 10 December 2011
  12. ^ Derby News Network, "World Cup Consolation: (5) Sweden Dodges (9) New Zealand, 94–66" Archived 7 December 2011 at the Wayback Machine, Retrieved 10 December 2011.
  13. ^ Derby News Network, "World Cup 7th Place: (6) France Rejects (9) New Zealand, 180–129" Archived 29 April 2012 at the Wayback Machine, Retrieved 10 December 2011.
  14. ^ Roller Derby AU "DAY FOUR: Roller Derby World Cup", Retrieved 9 December 2011.
  15. ^ Roller Derby Team New Zealand home page, "Roller Derby Team NZ – Page 1" Archived 19 December 2014 at the Wayback Machine, Retrieved 9 December 2011.
  16. ^ World Cup 2014, "Scores | Roller Derby World Cup", Retrieved 5 December 2014
  17. ^ 3news.co.nz, "Roller derby coach under fire for jab at deaf player", Retrieved 27 October 2014.
  18. ^ Dennison, Kevin (24 October 2014). "Sorry, Not Sorry: NZRDA Issues Defensive Statement in Wake of Discrimination Complaint". Derby Frontier. Retrieved 27 October 2014.
  19. ^ A Good Old Ramble, "The New Zealand Roller Derby Community in Crisis", Retrieved 27 October 2014.
  20. ^ Change.org, "Petitioning New Zealand Roller Derby Association for the immediate dismissal of Stacey Roper as Head Coach of Team NZ Roller Derby", Retrieved 27 October 2014.
  21. ^ DerbyCentral.Net, "Queerope takes on Pangina", Retrieved 24 October 2015.
  22. ^ Roller Derby World Cup 2014, "Roller Derby World Cup Schedule" Archived 8 December 2014 at the Wayback Machine, Retrieved 5 December 2014
  23. ^ 2014 Roller Derby World Cup
  24. ^ Roller Derby Team New Zealand home page, "Roller Derby Team NZ", Retrieved 5 December 2014.
  25. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 22 August 2017. Retrieved 21 August 2017.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)