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Featured Skater of the Month- Illbilly #76

Posted in Lifestyle, Roller Derby, on

Featured Skater of the Month- Illbilly #76

 Skate Name & Number: illbilly 76

Years Skating: My whole life- for as long as I can remember!

Years Involved in Roller Derby: About 4 years to date

When did you get involved in Roller Derby? Just before the first men’s European Championships.. about three months before to be exact.

Can you remember the first game you watched?  Yes the first game I been taken to see was a game in Liverpool where the LRB played but I can’t remember the opponent I just remember Liverpool winning I think.

What League/s are you currently part of? Southern Discomfort MRD, Team England MRD and Central City Rollergirls

Brief history of your time in Derby: I started with the Crash Test Brummies and spent a long time with those awesome guys until I recently made the move to play in London with SDRD. I also started my coaching career with the incredible Evolution Roller Derby before I made the move to Birmingham to CCR.

How did you come to choose your derby name?  Well I had no idea tbf and when my mate said lets go play men’s roller derby in Birmingham I took my old skate park helmet which was a lazy legs rock splitter (basically its builders helmet that is padded properly like a skate helmet) and I wore it backwards and it was red and it looked like a fireman’s helmet so my friend Riley Coyote said I should be ‘fireman slam’. But after my first session with the boys I went to a festival and came back on my second session and was somewhat rough round the edges and was too “sick” to skate so from then on I was illbilly.         

How would you describe your skating style? Not sure really if I was to describe in three words it would be strong fast footwork. 

What is your position of choice? Blocker or Jammer

Tell us about your kit- what is your current set up?

Skates: Currently like this moment I’m riding a Riedell 951 jam skate that I have been on for about two years. Powerdyne Arius plates, Moto bearings, and Reckless Morph wheels 88/95a

Protection: Deadbolt Blocker Elite knees, Atom elbow, Triple8 wrists , S1 Lifer Helmet and I’ve just been given some impact shorts to try from the good guys at Armourflex

What is on your 'most wanted' kit list at the moment? Well!! I’ve been dying to get my feet into a pair of Antik AR1 boots for a while and especially now the new AR1 boots are about to be available I really can’t wait!

How do you prepare for a bout? Well I train. Train hard and train smart that’s the key. If you eat right and rest right normally then your cool but for me it’s all about the confidence you get from putting in the work first hand.

What kind of off skates training do you do?  I train with a group of nut cases in Birmingham at the Ring MMA/Boxing Academy where we do all sorts of cross training, weight lifting and agility / explosive strength training. I also train at England’s national sports centre in Lillishal where I can get personally trained with more specific fitness goals.

Has Roller Derby changed your life? If so, how? Yes for sure, I started as a complete noob as we all do and it soon took over my life. The best thing for me is the vitality for life it gives me. I love my friends that play and I love sharing all of that with them. It keeps me entertained and busy and with goals to achieve. I like how my partner also skates so we share that which is awesome! I also like trying to give back in any way I can to the sport and the leagues I’m involved with. 

What is your proudest roller derby moment? There are so many! Eating a whole pack of ham at the first UKRDA men’s game at Alexandra Palace (POWER HAM CHALLENGE!) , competing at the first MERDC. Every time I coach Central City would be one. Also making the England men’s team and competing at the first world cup for sure!

Who are your derby heroes?  TJ Blinkley, Quadzilla, Smarty Pants, Jurrasick Park, Haterade to name but a few also maybe Sutton Impact and Ballistic Whistle ;)

Do you have any upcoming bouts that you’re really excited for and why?  Yes SKOD 2015 and British Champs with CCR and the exciting season SDRD have in front of us! I literally can’t wait!!

Other than playing are there any other ways that you involve yourself in Roller Derby? I’ve probably mentioned Central City Roller Girls who have just honoured me by making me head coach. All of the girls are incredible I hope to make them proud. Also I’m sponsored by who are fantastic. They have really looked after me and are an incredible company to be involved with and I’m so honoured to represent them because the products are ground breaking and at the forefront of the sport.

What are your thoughts on Roller Derby as a sport “past, present, future” ?  The past from what I know of was a passion and love for skating and the sport which has grown into what we see today which is ever evolving and fun and I love that I will continue just see that grow and grow.

Anything else you would like to share?

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