By Kevin Nimmock
The Invermere Killer Rollbots are back and they are looking to show their continued dominance over opposing roller derby teams from B.C. and Alberta.
The Rollbots have an upcoming home game against the Lady Macs from Canmore, a team they have been looking to compete against for three years. The game is at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, May 23rd at the Eddie Mountain Memorial Arena. The cost is $10 for adults and $5 for kids.
Both teams have a number of veteran players as well as new skaters, so it should be a good match up, said team captain Jess de Groot in an email.
Roller Derby is popular in the Columbia Valley because it combines the atmosphere of a community festival with a high-impact, fast-paced sport.
The sport involves two teams of five players roller skating in the same direction around a track. Gameplay consists of short matchups, called jams, in which a scoring player from both teams, called jammers, score points by lapping members of the opposing team.
At the Rollbots upcoming game, fans will be able to partake in an Arrowhead Brewing Company beer garden. There will also be a half-time belly dancing performance from Arabian Mountain Spice.
Invermere is a great supporter of roller derby, said Ms. de Groot. We always have great attendance at our home games and the crowd really gets into it.
She attributes her teams popularity to their success in recent competitions. She said the team plays at a high level, allowing audience members to see something truly unique.
The Rollbots are a fun team to watch, said Ms. de Groot. We have some heavy hitters and skilled jammers. We work hard to find teams that will challenge us and play good derby so we can put on a great show for the audience.
The Rollbots used to be part of the East Kootenay Roller Derby League before disaffiliating this winter. Last year, the Rollbots won the league championship after beating the Bavarian Barbarians from Kimberley.
On June 6th, the Rollbots will have a rematch against the Barbarians in Invermere. Ms. de Groot said she is looking forward to the clash with her teams closest rival.
We have played the Barbs quite a few times, and its always a very high-action, intense game, she said. It will be very interesting to see the two teams meet up again on the track.
With few competitive sports available to women in Invermere, roller derby has provided an exciting opportunity for women looking to compete.
Its a unique opportunity to see these women who live regular lives in our town, get on roller skates and be very physical and athletic, Ms. de Groot said.