We caught up with MRD skaters Don Gingovanni, Lt. Damn and Darth Sebious following the news that they’d made it through to the final roster of their respective national teams.
Don G and Darth Sebious will be skating with Team England Men’s Roller Derby, and Lt. Damn will be skating with All Ireland Men’s Roller Derby. The final rosters can be found here (Team England) and here (All Ireland).
How did you react when you were told you’d made it through?
Don G: When I got the email saying I was through to the England Squad I was expecting to be told ‘Thanks but no thanks, Don’, so when I read that I was in the squad my brain melted. I probably re-read the email 5 or 6 times before I eventually decided I hadn’t read it wrong. Finding out I was on the tournament roster for the world cup was a little more anticlimactic. I had slept through my alarm clock and so it was 9am (this happens fairly regularly) when I was woken by my phone buzzing with a giant picture of Darth Sebious’s face staring back at me. I mumbled hello and in his very monotone voice he said, “Congratulations Mr England skater”. So in a nutshell I found out I was on the Team England Roster half-asleep, by a seemingly unexcited Seb and in my underpants!
What will you be doing in preparation for the World Cup?
Lt Damn: All Ireland have a dedicated strength and conditioning coach who has designed specific training plans to ensure that we’re all in peak condition in time for the World Cup. The training will include weight training for strength, interval training for fitness and endurance training. This isn’t anything too different to my usual training plan so I’m really looking forward to it. We are reviewing footage of skaters we could play against (including MRD’s Seb & Don) and are discussing tactical play. There are also team bonding sessions and team training to get us to play together as a well oiled machine.
What team do you feel poses the biggest threat to your team and what will you have to do to combat this?
Darth Sebious: The biggest threat is very clear to us: Team USA. Arguably the greatest men’s roller derby team ever put together; these are the best the USA has to offer and what a fearsome team it is. All we can do is train hard, focus on playing together as a team and keeping our cool. England has some amazing talent in the world cup roster and we’re going to be showing people just how good we can play roller derby at the world cup. The team has already played together once over in Holland and we are going to be playing Wales in the New Year. These games leading up to the World Cup are very important for us in terms of bonding and learning how each skater plays, whilst also giving us some breathing room to work on different tactics and line ups. We have a very strong team as well as an excellent team of support staff, and we’re going to be showing the world just how determined we are in March.
Skating Since: September 2010
Favourite Move: Dynamic Wall
Derby Inspiration: Pretty much the Team USA roster!
Skating Style: Controlled and technical
Mission Statement: Always leave yourself options.
Skating Since: Nov 2012
Favourite Move: Hit & Juke
Derby Inspiration: I don’t really have one as it’d be a variety of many skaters
Skating Style: Strong and explosive
Mission Statement: Play it like it’s your last game
Skating since: Mid 2010
Favourite move: Using laterals and good plough work to slow jammers down.
Derby inspiration: I try and draw ideas from as many different skaters as I can.
Skating style: Solid and direct
Mission statement: Have fun, be the best you can be.