LA Derby Dolls vs. TXRD Lonestar Rollergirls
Here are the ground rules: five players from each team enter the track -- four blockers and one jammer. The whistle blows and the group of blockers start skating. The second whistle lets the jammers begin their jam. The jammers must skate through the group of blockers, go all the way around the track and catch up to the group again. Now, for every opposing blocker they pass, a point is gained.
It's those times when the jammers enter the group of blocks that the most fun is found. The blockers use their bodies, shoulders and hips, to block the jammer from getting through. This usually can ensue the falls and scraps that makes the audience go "ohhhhhh." Even at last night's game, LA Derby Doll's Jihad, flew into the audience leaving her with 20 or so stitches to be had (the audience must sign waivers to gain entry). At a practice skirmish on Thursday night, both teams lost a member due to injuries.
It's a dangerous sport, and these girls love it. They love it so much, they pay a monthly fee to play and have required practices 2 to 3 times a week. Eventually, they hope the monthly fees will go away, but rent for their permanent space at the Little Tokyo Shopping Center and a 5-million dollar insurance policy is killing them.
Last night's sold out game left the LA Derby Dolls 12 points behind Texas, who won with 39 points. By halftime, both teams were neck and neck, but Texas' Co-Captain, Smarty Pants is fast. Really fast. We can't believe how she could glide through a group of blockers with such ease.
There will be more Derby Doll coverage to come. The next game (or bout as they call it) will be on February 10th in Little Tokyo (tickets sold through their website). Games sell out, so buy early. The good seats go fast, so show up an hour early to grab one and if you grab a trackside seat and spill beer onto the track, these girls will kick you in the face with a skate (it almost happened last night).
For more on the Derby Dolls, check out LAist Andy Sternberg's report for Annenberg Radio.
More pictures after the jump.