We’d like to introduce you to the newest members of ToRD. They updated their look last year, and this year they’ve got a new name to go with it. No longer are our rookies going by the Deadly Viper Assassination Squad. They’ve animorphed into a deadly predator, and are ready to sink their fangs into this coming season – so let us know if you’ve got what it takes to take them on.
Toronto Roller Derby held its 2017 home team drafts in two stages, on August 12 and November 12, and our home teams are now replenished for Season 11, kicking off in January 2017. (Stay tuned for schedule and ticket info coming soon!) In addition to a fresh crop of rookie and transfer skaters making their way to our home teams, we also have a couple of returning skaters, plus some intraleague transfers. Here’s the lowdown on who went where in our two-stage draft.
August Draft – stage 1
Transfer skater: Noodle Kaboodle
|DEATH TRACK DOLLS|
Transfer skater: Brickhouse Bardot
Mina Von Tease
Thighlight of Your Life
November Draft – stage 2
Returning skater: Sammy Destruction
|DEATH TRACK DOLLS|
Returning skater: Rainbow Fight
Transfer skater: Commander Will Wrecker
Helena Beat’em Harder
Transfer skaters are those that moved from one home team to another in this off-season; Returning skaters are those that had previously left their home team (and in both case, ToRD) but have returned to their original home teams. The rest of our draftees have either gotten the call from their previous home on the D-VAS, or are new ToRD members who have transferred here from other leagues. Congratulations to all skaters, and ToRD fans – stay tuned for information about Season 11 coming soon!
Our 2016 season has come to an end, but if you are an experienced derby skater and looking to join us for 2017, now’s your chance! On Monday September 26 we will be holding a Transfer Test at 7pm at the Bunker. To sign up, and for any questions about the transfer test, send us an email at email@example.com!
August 2016 MVPs of the Month – The Gs!
GOOOOoooooooooooooooooooo Forces!!! This dynamic duo is a no brainer for our August MVP(s) of the Month! G and Mr. Force are an integral part of our derby community and have been for years. They are part of the heart of league and do so much to help us keep going and growing!
G-Force has her hand in so many areas of the league we can’t even list all the things she does… but we’ll try! G has been a mainstay for Front of House for the last few seasons. You will also see her at every bout helping out or rocking her booth in our vendor alley selling her amazing chain maille jewelry. G even sold our merch at the Men’s World Cup in Calgary this year! She is the voice of reason during league conversations and she will also be the one to join you for a beer afterwards. Lastly, and this does not get as much attention as it should, is the incredible support G gives to the D-VAS, our newest ToRD members, year after year. She welcomes, she teaches, she makes friends. In short, we ♥ her.
Mr. Force is awesome in his own right. We’re pretty sure the entire league knows of his magical technical and video powers. He is there for every ToRD game, whether it be our bouts, tournaments, away games and tournaments hosted by other leagues, Roll Out or even some of our scrimmages. Mr. Force is a big reason why we as a league and as skaters are able to be better. The footage he shoots helps us in soooo many ways. There is a wealth of knowledge and experience saved in his archives which helps us devise strategies, learn what we need to improve on and see the progress we have made. What is even more amazing is that he makes this all accessible to us and our family, friends, and fans of the derby community. We also love watching his videos to hear Mr. Force just off-camera yelling encouragements “GOOOOOOOOOOOO D-VAS!!”.
Together these two make an amazing pair and one the league would truly be remiss without – WE LOVE YOU FORCES!!
On Saturday August 6, Toronto Roller Derby closed out our historic 10th Season with our annual End of Season Awards bash, which celebrates the best of Toronto Roller Derby, both on and off the track. Here are the 2016 winners:
Best Jammer – Beaver Mansbridge (Gore-Gore Rollergirls)
Best Pivot – LowBlow Palooza (Smoke City)
Best Blocker – Biggley Smallz (Chicks Ahoy!)
Rookie of the Year – Banshee (Chicks Ahoy!)
Most Outstanding Newcomer – Boxcar (Chicks Ahoy!)
Most Feared Skater – Biggley Smallz (Chicks Ahoy!)
Most Improved Skater – Annguard (Chicks Ahoy!)
Holy Grail – Pretty (Chicks Ahoy!)
ToRD Culture Awards
Most Help off the Track – Morton
Encore Award – Murdercat!
Draw First Blood – Scrappy
Downright Awesome Award – Morton
Heart of Gold – Casey McNally
Tordie of the Year – Dawson
Most awards are voted upon by ToRD members, recognizing their peers for their performances both on and off the track, and are geared mostly towards recognizing members for their contributions to our home team season. Best Jammer is based on statistics from the 2016 Season. Best Blocker and Best Pivot are fairly self-explanatory. Rookie of the Year recognizes the best new skater who developed first and foremost as a ToRD member, and had not previously played for another full contact derby organization, while Best Newcomer recognizes a new skater who has transferred from another full contact league (Boxcar has a long derby lineage, including with Montreal, Rose City and Thunder Bay). Most Feared recognizes a skater who is your worst nightmare to face on the track, and Most Improved Skater recognizes a skater who has shown a noticeable growth and improvement in their play, leadership and skating. While not a skater award per se, the Holy Grail award returned this year, honouring the bench manager who has the greatest impact on their team’s success.
Most Help Off the Track goes to a skater who contributes strongly to the league behind the scenes. The Encore Award (“winning the afterparty”) represents the fun side of Toronto Roller Derby.
The D-VAS introduced a new award this season, the Draw First Blood award. This award goes to a team member that always brings 100% to every practice, consistently shows the most enthusiasm, and pushes the team. A brief collection of accolades from Scrappy’s teammates:
“There’s a lot of personalities, varying skill levels, and personal and team goals to navigate. Scrappy finds the balance with such confidence and positivity. She keeps us focused, makes us work, and brings the fun! … She wanted the team to really work at this sport we all love, but she never made those who needed a lower intensity feel excluded … She motivates the D-VAS into getting the best out of practice and scrimmages. She is gracious and effective when it comes to skater feedback and giving tips to get you to your best level. … she makes the team committed and perform with all their heart, as she always does. All heart, that’s Scrappy.”
The Downright Awesome Award, named for its first recipient in 2009 (“Downright Dirty” Dawson) recognizes someone who makes a positive change in ToRD culture. This is also a pay-it-forward award, with each year’s recipient picking the winner the following year. Last year’s winner, Honey Boom Boom, honored Morton, for all of her hard work behind the scenes throughout the season, including organizing the annual league draft. Previous winners of this award are:
- 2009: Dawson
- 2010: Speedin Hawking
- 2011: Chronic
- 2012: Babushkill
- 2013: Betty Bomber
- 2014: Mr Force
- 2015: Honey Boom Boom
The ToRD Heart of Gold Award, also known as the Crankypants Award (named in honour of our former announcer Cranky), recognizes a non-skater for their contributions to the growth and development of ToRD. This year’s winner is volunteer extraordinaire Casey McNally, who contributes to every single event during the ToRD season, whether that is selling tickets, working the beer table, helping with setup or teardown or even donating raffle prizes. Thank you, Casey, for everything you do for ToRD!
Previous winners of this award are:
- 2012: Mr Force
- 2013: The Reverend Ramirez
- 2014: Wencer / Mr Whistler
- 2015: Derby Nerd
the 2016 ToRDie of the Year is Dawson. ToRDies of the Year goes to a skater who “has experienced on-track success and who has best exemplified the values and spirit of ToRD on and off the track this past season. Our league values include: Community, Inclusivity, Empowerment, Development, and Respect.” A veteran skater, Dawson is the epitome of the heart and soul of Toronto Roller Derby, a magical combination of skill, attitude, fun and passion for the game that is infectious.
5 and 10-years!
At every End of Season event, we recognize our veteran members who have reached their 5-year mark with Toronto Roller Derby. The people to hit that milestone this year were:
- Biggley Smallz
- Free Range Clam
- Joss Wheelin’
- Lexi Con
- LowBlow Palooza
- Mazel Tough
- Moose Knuckles
- R2 Smack U
- Viktory Lapp
As this was Toronto Roller Derby’s 10th Season, we were thrilled to be able to honour members who go back to the very beginning! 10 years is a long time, and it is an age in roller derby terms. Congratulations to the following folks for sticking with it:
- Betty Bomber – D-VAS (original), Death Track Dolls, CN Power / ToRD All-Stars
- Classic Joker – ToRD Officials
- G-Force!! – Chicks Ahoy!, CN Power, D-VAS
- Mia Culprit – D-VAS (original), Gore-Gore Rollergirls, Smoke City Betties, CN Power / ToRD All-Stars
- Penny Whistler – ToRD Officials
Two other one-time awards were handed out:
In honour of their continued service to and work for Toronto Roller Derby, G-Force!! and her husband Mr Force were recognized as The Big Gs, with a trophy that featured a dinosaur on it. As one of the rare 10-year skaters in ToRD, and a long time trainer, advisor and committee member G-Force!! has put in countless hours over the years. If you lined up those hours end to end they would certainly break a metaphor halfway around the world. Mr Force of course is the brains and brawn behind layer9.ca, the most extensive archive of ToRD video footage going back to the first season. ToRD would not be where we are without their efforts.
Former league president, and retiring skater Mazel Tough was honoured with the Tough as Nails award. In her years with the league Tough served multiple years on the executive and basically made everything work. Her leadership, perseverance, commitment and friendship will all be missed greatly.
Thank you to everyone on the EoS Committee for putting together a wonderful, fun event to mark Season 10, thank you also to Bill Murray for being our host, and congratulations to all of this season’s winners!
MVP of the Month
Toronto Roller Derby is 100% volunteer-run. That means that everything from training to outreach to event planning is made possible by the efforts of our league members.
Every month, we recognize one member of the ToRD community for their extraordinary contributions to the league. Because there are many aspects to building and promoting a derby league, MVPs are recognized for lots of different reasons. But they all share one key attribute: they are the ones that take on the big, messy, and tough jobs. And we could not play the sport that we love without their help. Help us celebrate and thank Toronto Roller Derby’s MVPs!
July 2016 MVP of the Month – MORTON!
When something needs to get done, Morton makes it happen! Not only did she co-lead our WFTDA-Recognized Tournament Quad City Chaos in March 2016, but even before the start of this year’s season, Morton ensured that we had not one, but two!, successful home team drafts (and draft parties)! The home team draft is a core activity so that we can continue to successfully grow our teams and talent… and now she is gearing up to make it happen all over again this year!
That’s not all folks. Morton is an active member of our league’s Board of Directors and her love of the sport and league really shines through when she offers and completes updates to important league policies. She is a person of a thousand ideas! In addition to all of this, Morton not only skates with our home team SCB but she is also rocking things on the All-Stars team this year! An injury may have her recovering off-skates right now, but we are all looking forward to her being back on track and delivering the pounding hits she does so well! Thanks Em!
Our 2016 season has come to an end! Want to get in on Season 11 for 2017? Sign up for our Fresh Meat program!
- Toronto Roller Derby will be starting our next Fresh Meat Program on Sunday August 7th at 1:30pm at the Downsview Bunker. This is a program that will take you from whatever your current level is to being ready to play in games!
- We will be hosting a Meat ‘n Greet at the Bunker on Monday July 18 at 7pm to answer all your questions – it will be in two parts:
1) a chance to watch derby and have people in the community explain to you how it works, answer any questions you have
2) a presentation about the program, what to expect and what’s involved – we will also have a vendor on site to answer questions/sell derby gear. You can also send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org to find out more about this year’s program!