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La Racaille Wins Second Beast in All-Montreal Throwback Final

Beast Winners 2016 Joe Mac

La Racaille, Les Filles du Roi, and the Venus Fly Tramps, the top three teams at the 2016 Beast of the East. (Photo by Joe Mac)

There was a certain sense of nostalgia surrounding this year’s Beast of the East: you could feel it in the lead up to the weekend and you could certainly feel it at the event. It was the ninth edition of the tournament—the longest running multi-team event on the Canadian flat track calendar—but coming as it did during the 10th anniversary of the sport in this country and the 10th anniversary of the host league Montreal, there was a celebratory feeling around the proceedings.

On Friday night, La Racaille coach and retired skater Bone Machine, along with a few others, put up a commemorative poster featuring three framed rosters of the original lists of skaters on all three of the league’s home teams. Former Filles du Roi and New Skid skater Smack Daddy blew the opening whistle at the now annual Toronto-Montreal showdown that night, and all weekend former Montreal skaters dotted the audience. On the track, the tournament welcomed back two of its marquee players: Trash N Smash and the formerly retired Iron Wench.

Montreal rose to the occasion: Les Contrabanditas played their hearts out but came up against their leaguemates La Racaille in the quarterfinals before that same Racaille team and Les Filles du Roi found each other the sole teams remaining in a rematch of the 2010 championship game. It was only the second time since that tournament that a Montreal team had made the final, and it seemed fitting when all was said and done that the winningest team in BOE history was the one that came away with it. It took some late-game heroics from Iron Wench to pull off Racaille’s 141-106 win in a thrilling final. Although some had picked La Racaille to do well, it was not an easy road to the title.

Double Elimination Round

Tri-City’s Venus Fly Tramps, Toronto’s Death Track Dolls, and Montreal’s Filles du Roi and La Racaille all won two in a row on Day 1 to advance directly to the quarterfinals, and while the two Montreal teams seemed to distance themselves from the pack early on, it took a little while for the Tramps to get going, pulling off narrow victories against Hamilton’s Molotov Girls and Toronto’s Smoke City Betties. On the flip side, those Molotov Girls joined Royal City’s Violet Uprising (who had a great showing in losses to FDR and a last-gasp two-pointer to defending champs Casse-Gueules), South Simcoe’s Ghoul Guides and, surprisingly, Quebec’s Rouge et Gore (last year’s finalists) as the four two-and-done teams at the Beast.

The two big first round surprises were Roller Derby Quebec’s comparatively poor showing (after dominating for two years) and the break-out performance by Capital City. Casse-Gueules did eventually make it the final four for the third year in a row, but it took two last-gasp jams in two games they probably didn’t deserve to win to do so (against Violet Uprising early and the Death Track Dolls in the quarters). Rouge et Gore bowed out after losses to the Slaughter Daughters and Capital City’s Cupquakes. Bad luck saw those Cupquakes eventually have to face leagumates the Bacon Pirates in an elimination matchup that proved to be one the best of the weekend with the Pirates eking out a 65-62 win. Capital City’s emergence shouldn’t be too surprising for fans of either their WFTDA team, the Dolly Rogers, or for those who have followed the Fresh and the Furious tournament. Capital City’s winning 2014 entry into that event was full of the stars from this weekend’s teams. Cupquakes jammer Labrosse, Bacon Pirates jammer Kaio-Kensi and blockers Edmonton and Apple Sass were vital performers for that Cannon Dolls team, not to mention that the Slaughter Daughters’ Ice Tina and the Smoke City Betties’ Caume A Kazi were also critical components of that historic Fresh and Furious winning squad.

Playoff Round

Iron Wench 2016

La Racaille’s Iron Wench lived up to her much anticipated return from retirement. (Photo by Joe Mac)

The Venus Fly Tramps got noticeably stronger as the weekend went on, bolstered on day two by the arrival of double threat JANEgerous. They dispatched the Riot Squad with relative ease before giving all they could against a destined La Racaille, falling 105-64 in the semifinal. They eventually nabbed third place with a dominant 172-52 performance against Casse-Gueules; it was only the second time a Tri-City team podiumed (after the Vicious Dishes 2012 win).

FDR eventually ended Capital City’s breakout run with a convincing 95-45 win over the Bacon Pirates in the quarters, while Casse-Gueules pulled off another late comeback to defeat the Death Track Dolls 55-48. But the best of the quarterfinal showdowns was the all-Montreal matchup between La Racaille and Les Contrabanditas that saw some thrilling, historic, one-on-one duels between the aforementioned Trash N Smash and Iron Wench. The 86-76 win was the toughest of the tournament for the eventual champs.

The final lived up to its billing. FDR led La Racaille 80-45 at half and seemed poised to relive the 2010 final that they won, but five minutes into the second half, an Iron Wench 18-pointer got La Racaille back into it and they grasped the momentum and rolled the rest of the game, eventually opening up a bit of a gap on the way to a 141-106 win to become only the second team to repeat as Beast champs.

Numbers of Note

  • La Racaille became the first team to reach 30 wins (31), and the championship was the team’s 6th podium finish in nine years (both are records).
  • This tournament saw the 4th and 5th 150+ point games in Beast history (La Racaille 156, Riot Sqaud 162)
  • La Racaille’s 156-55 win against the Slaughter Daughters was the highest scoring game in BOE history (211 points).
  • Tournament high score was the 162 by Rideau Valley’s Riot Squad. It was only the second time a team has managed 160+ points in a Beast game.

*For complete scores, visit the Beast of the East IX results page.

Beast of the East 9: A Preview of BOE 2016

BOE2016 Banner

This will be the ninth addition of the annual home-team tournament.

If you look closely enough at the podium finishes in the Beast of the East’s eight-year history, you can read in them the history of flat track roller derby in eastern Canada. From Hamilton’s early leadership (the Harlots won the inaugural tournament) through to the rise of Montreal’s dominance (for two years, 2009-10, Montreal finished 1-2-3 with relative ease); then on to the WFTDA era and the New Skids push toward Champs that saw them give over the home teams to a new generation of skaters and allowed leagues like Toronto and Rideau Valley to take control of the Beast. And eventually, Roller Derby Quebec’s competitive rise was captured in Casse-Gueules’ back-to-back finals including last year’s against their RDQ leaguemates Rouge et Gore.

Photo by Derek Lang (www.bagelhot.com)

HCRG’s Steel Town Tank Girls and ToRD’s Smoke City Betties kick off the inaugural Beast of the East in 2008. (Photo by Derek Lang)

But the BOE has existed long enough and been host to so many myth-making moments that the tournament’s history is rich on its own. La Racaille’s five podium finishes (one win, three runner ups, and a third pace finish) is a record, and a consistency that is reflected in their record-holding 26 tournament wins. Along with Les Filles du Roi (23) and Rideau Valley’s Slaughter Daughters (20), they are the only teams to have compiled over 20 wins in the event. It’s likely that Les Contrabanditas (19) will join them this year and an inspired run could see ToRD’s Gore-Gore Rollergirls reach that feat as well (they currently sit on 17).

The 20-win Slaughter Daughters, who’d first competed in the tournament as the Bytown Blackhearts, loaded with first generation Vixens went on one of the most incredible runs in BOE history: three straight finals framed by championships in 2011 and 2013 (they remain the only team to repeat as tournament champs and along with La Racaille, they only teams to reach three straight finals). Last year, they defied a league shakeup and provided one of the great stories of the 2015 tournament with an inspired run to the final four.

Purchase this and other photos by Derek Lang at bagelhot.com

ToRD’s Gore-Gore Rollergirls were the first team to top 100 points; they did so against Ottawa’s Capital Carnage in 2009. (Photo by Derek Lang)

What you can also see in the history of the tournament is the evolution of the game itself. In the beginning games were fast-paced but unphysical; they were incredibly low scoring; for example, only two teams managed 60 points in 2008. In 2009 an awesome Gore-Gore Rollergirls managed the tournament’s first 100-point game. I t would happen once again the following year, then a few times in 2011 and it eventually became a regular feat. 150 points is the new 100: it’s happened only three times, with last years Daughters setting the new record with 164 points (they also set a record for biggest win, 164-2). Because of the rise in scoring, the safest record could be FDR’s 2010 tournament record for points against: 9. They won their two first-round games by a combined score of 207-13, never giving up more than 12 points in a game throughout (until the 30-minute final when they gave up 20 to La Racaille).

Despite annual blowouts (unavoidable given that the tournament features house league teams randomly selected and then randomly bracketed), the tournament has a tendency to deliver thrills as well. Last year there were two one-point games in the first round; in 2014 the quarterfinals had an average differential of only 12 points (including an overtime game) and the final was a 15-pointer (129-114) decided over two 20-minute halves; in 2011 the Slaughter Daughters won the Beast by two points after an epic last-jam comeback.

What has become standard, at least since 2010, is that the tournament is impossible to predict. Attempting to forecast the outcome is a bracket-busting exercise in futility. This year’s could be even more unpredictable than most given the five first timers (most ever) including representatives from two leagues competing for the first time: South Simcoe Rebel Roller’s Ghoul Guides and Hamilton Area Roller Derby’s Molotov Girls. The other newcomers are Royal City’s Violet Uprising (their Killer Queens participated in 2014) and Capital City’s Bacon Pirates and Cupquakes (the Beauty School Dropouts competed last year).

Purchase this and other photos by Derek Lang at bagelhot.com

Trash N Smash (right) duels with Slaughter Daughter pivot Hannah Murphy in a 2009 BOE quarterfinal game. (Photo by Derek Lang)

Quebec’s Casse-Gueules will be looking to become the third team to advance to three straight finals and given the experience that their roster has gained playing at the WFTDA level, that could be a possibility. 2014 champs, Toronto’s Gore-Gore Rollergirls are also in the midst of a strong ToRD season and could be looking to erase memories of a disappointing 2015 tournament. Rideau Valley always sends strong squads, with the Riot Squad returning this year to join the Daughters. And of course Montreal can never be overlooked. FDR had a third-place showing last year and should be strong again, but look out for La Racaille, recent winners of Montreal’s annual round-robin tournament. Most fans are as looking forward to the return of Iron Wench as they are the tournament itself. Wench was the offensive centrepiece of La Racaille’s three-straight finals appearances from 2008-2010 and has not appeared in the tournament since. She will be joined in her return to the Beast by another fan favourite, Montreal co-founder Trash N Smash, who will try to help Les Contrabanditas get that 20th victory (they are the only Montreal team never to win the Beast).

If I had to make a prediction (and I do because I’m a sucker for punishment), I’m going with the sentimental choice and picking La Racaille to take it, knocking off Casse-Gueules, who will reach their third-straight final. I also wouldn’t be surprised to see the Daughters go on another spirited run (along with the Riot Squad) and for the Gore-Gore Rollergirls and Les Filles du Roi to be in the mix as well. The Venus Fly Tramps had a strong tournament least year and could return, at least, to Sunday’s quarterfinals. I expect the Rouge et Gore to round out that final eight. If you’re looking for a darkhorse, one of the Capital City squads could surprise, so might as well pick the Bacon Pirates (who had a strong 2015 season).

*Take a look back at the history of the Beast, including winners, records and every score of every game.

Banner_Cn_Skids_.jpg

**Friday night will feature the now annual New Skids on the Block vs. Toronto All Stars showdown. However, the anticipation that had built over the past two seasons has dissipated somewhat as each team seems to be on the opposite trajectory. Last year these teams played in a 9-point thriller, but it should be the Skids with ease in 2016.

Beast of the East 2008-2015

To get ready for the 2016 Beast of the East, take a look back at the history of the tournament.

BOE2016 BannerBeast of the East: By the Numbers

YEAR

CHAMPION

RUNNER UP

THIRD PLACE

2008 Hamilton Harlots (HCRG) La Racaille (MTLRD) Les Filles du Roi / Les Contrabanditas (MTLRD)
2009 La Racaille Les Contrabanditas Les Filles du Roi / Smoke City Betties (ToRD)
2010 Les Filles du Roi La Racaille Les Contrabanditas
2011 Slaughter Daughters (RVRG) Gore-Gore Rollergirls (ToRD) Death Track Dolls (ToRD)
2012 Vicious Dishes (TCRD) Slaughter Daughters Chicks Ahoy! (ToRD)
2013 Slaughter Daughters La Racaille Death Track Dolls
2014 Gore-Gore Rollergirls Casse-Gueules (RDQ) La Racaille
2015 Casse-Gueules Rouge et Gore (RDQ) Les Filles du Roi
Photo by Derek Lang (www.bagelhot.com)

Hamilton Harlots won the first Beast of the East in 2008. (Photo by Derek Lang)

NOTABLE NUMBERS (Records etc.)

Most Wins: 26 (La Racaille 2008-2015); La Racaille has the most podium finishes (1 champ, 3 runners up, 1 third place)

Most Losses: 15 (Thames Fatales 2008-2015)

Points Per Game (tournament): 110 (Death Track Dolls 2013)/ 109.5 (Slaughter Daughters 2013) / 102.5 (La Racaille 2013)

Points Against (tournament): 9 (Les Filles du Roi, 2010)

Most Points (single game–20 mins): 164 (Slaughter Daughters 2015); 159 (Rouge et Gore 2013); 154 (Les Contrabanditas 2015)

Combined Points (single game–20 mins): 184 (Rouge et Gore 159 vs. Debutantes 32 2013)/ 181 (La Racaille 117 vs. Contrabanditas 64 2013)

Biggest Differential: 162 (Slaughter Daughters 164 vs. Thames Fatales 2, 2015);

Biggest Shutout: 148-0 (Les Contrabanditas 148 vs. Chrome Mollys [GTAR] 0, 2011)

[*The Gore-Gore Rollergirls were the first team to score 100 points in a bout–a 103-11 victory over Capital Carnage in 2009; Les Filles du Roi did it vs. the Vicious Dishes in 2010; four different teams accomplished it in 2011; the Vicious Dishes did it three times themselves in 2012, while three other teams did it that year as well. Since then, it has become common. Rouge et Gore (2013) were the first team to score 150 points in a game; in 2015 both Les Contrabanditas and Slaughter Daughters did so].

[*2012 was the first time both finalists (Vicious Dishes, Slaughters Daughters) lost a game on the way to the finals]

PARTICIPANT HISTORY

(BOE 8: 2016 participants first)

Team League BOE Record Notes
la-racaille-logoLa Racaille MTLRD 26 – 12 Semis 12. Second in 08, 10, 13. Champs in 09. 3rd in 2014
Contrabanditas LogoLes Contrabanditas MTLRD 19 – 12 2nd place in 2009. 3rd in 2010. Quarters 2011, 12, 13.
Les Filles du Roi LogoLes Filles du Roi MTLRD 23 – 9 Semi-final 08, 09, 13. Champs in 2010. Third place 2-15. Quarters 2012
riot squad logoRiot Squad RVRG 5-8 Fifth appearance (2010, 11, 13, 14). Quarterfinals 2014
slaughter daughters logoSlaughter Daughters RVRG 20 – 10 Eighth appearance. Champs 2011, 13; 2nd place 2012. Semis 2015.
Tramps logoVenus Fly Tramps TCRD 4 – 8 Fifth appearance (2009-2011, 2015)
deathtrackdolls_logoDeath Track Dolls ToRD 12 – 13 Quarter finals in 2009, 14; 3rd place in 2011, 13.
Smoke City Betties LogoSmoke City Betties ToRD 6-12 Eighth appearance. 2008-2014. Semi final 2009. Quarter final 2012
Gore-Gore Rollergirls logoGore-Gore Rollergirls ToRD 17 – 10 Forfeit 2009 at 3-0. Runners-up 2011; Champs 2014
casse gueules logoLes Casse-Gueules RDQ 9 – 4 Fourth appearance (2013-2015). Champs 2015. Finalists 2014
rouge et gore logoLe Rouge & Gore RDQ 8 – 5 Fourth appearance (2013-2015). Quarter final 2013, 14. Finalist 2015
 BP less angryBacon Pirates  CCDD  –  First appearance
cupquakes_0Cupquakes  CCDD  –  First appearance
 molotov_0Molotov Girls HARD  –  First appearance
 logo-violet-uprisingViolet Uprising  RCRG  –  First appearance
GhoulsFINAL Ghoul Guides  SSRR  –  First appearance
 

Past Participants

Hamilton Harlots HCRG 8 – 6 2008-2010, 2012. Champs in 08. Became Hammer City B-team.
Death Row Dames HCRG 3 – 5 2008-2010. Quarter final in 2010. No longer operating.
Steel Town Tanks Girls HCRG 1 – 1 2008. No longer operating.
Bay Street Bruisers ToRD 1 – 3 2008, 2009. Became ToRD B-travel team. No longer operating.
D-VAS ToRD 0 – 1 2008. Now ToRD houseleague farm team.
Chicks Ahoy! ToRD 11-12 Seven appearances. 2008-2013, 2015. 4th in 2011. 3rd 2012
London Thrashers FCDG 0 – 1 2008. No longer operating.
Bytown Blackhearts ORD 0 – 1 2008. Split from ORD to become Slaughter Daughters, first team in RVRG
Capital Carnage ORD 0 – 2 2009. No longer operating.
Devil Dollies QCRG 1 – 1 1st US team (2008)
Derby Dames Grn Mtn 2 – 1 2nd US team, 1st to reach quarter finals (2010). Now a travel team.
Derby Debutantes GTAR 2-10 2009-2013. Now GTA B/Farm team.
Chrome Mollys GTAR 0 – 2 2011. No longer operating.
Vicious Dishes TCRG 10-9 2009-2013. Quarter finals 2010, 11. Champs 2012
Total Knock-Outs TCRG 3-6 2011, 13, 15. Quarterfinals 2013
Luscious Lunch Ladies FCDG 2-3 Quarterfinals in 2014
 Thames Fatales  FCDG 7-15  2008-15. Quarterfinals in 2010, 2013.
Babes of Thunder TBRD  2-2 2012. Quarter finals in 2012
Reines of Terror MRR  0-2 2012. No longer operating.
Les Duchesses RDQ 1-4 2011, 2012. Promoted to RDQ travel team
Prime Sinisters RVRG 4-3 2014, 15
 Motor City Madames  DRRD  0-4  2012, 2014. Now Durham B-travel team
 Atom Smashers  DRRD 1-4  2014, 2015. Now Durham A-travel team
Killer Queens RCRG 0-2 2014
Beauty School Dropouts CCDD 0-2 2015
Skateful Dead KDG 2-2 2015

YEAR-BY-YEAR RESULTS

(Generally, all games 20 minutes until final, which was 30, but by 2012 had become 2 20s)

Beast of the East 2008 PosterBeast of the East 1: 2008

First Round (Single Elimination)

POOL A

Steel Town Tank Girls 40 vs Smoke City Betties 18
La Racaille 65 vs The Bytown Blackhearts 29
Death Row Dames 17 vs Devil Dollies 54
D-VAS 27 vs Les Contrabanditas 50

POOL B

Gore-Gore Rollergirls 13 vs. Hamilton Harlots 52

Bay Street Brusies 45 vs Thames Fatales 38
London Thrashers 13 vs Chicks Ahoy 65
Death Track Dolls 23 vs Les Filles du Roi 37

Quarter Finals

Steel Town Tank Girls 30 vs La Racaille 32

Devil Dollies 16 vs. Les Contrabanditas 42

Chicks Ahoy 30 vs Les Filles du Roi 38
Hamilton Harlots 53 vs Bay Street Bruisers 15

Semi Finals

Hamilton Harlots 58 vs Les Filles du Roi 29

Les Contrabanditas 32 vs La Racaille 39

Final

Hamilton Harlots 55 vs. La Racaille 18

* Read the Derby Nerd’s reflections.

Beast of the East 2009Beast of the East 2: 2009

First Round (Double Elimination)

Capital Carnage 11 vs. Gore-Gore Rollergirls 103

Death Row Dames 23 vs. Thames Fatales 19

Les Contrabanditas 59 vs. Venus Fly Tramps 26

Slaughter Daughters 24 vs. Smoke City Betties 32

La Racaille 67 vs. Bay Street Bruisers 10

Chicks Ahoy! 48 vs. Vicisou Dishes 32

Les Filles du Roi 77 vs. Death Track Dolls 6

Derby Debutantes 6 vs. Hamilton Harlots 69

Gore-Gore Rollergirls 32 vs. Death Row Dames 5

Capital Carnage 20 (eliminated) vs. Thames Fatales 67

Les Contrabanditas 34 vs. Smoke City Betties 20

Venus Fly Tramps 14 (eliminated) vs. Slaughter Daughters 48

La Racaille 36 vs. Chicks Ahoy! 35

Bay Street Bruisers 16 (eliminated) vs. Vicious Dishes 21

Les Filles du Roi 34 vs. Hamilton Harlots 25

Death Track Dolls 61 vs. Derby Debutantes 20 (eliminated)

Gore-Gore Rollergirls 35 vs. Les Contrabanditas 26

Death Row Dames 15 (eliminated) vs. Smoke City Betties 24

Thames Fatales 28 (eliminated) vs. Slaughter Daughters 68

La Racaille 35 vs. Les Filles du Roi 43

Chicks Ahoy! 21 (eliminated) vs. Hamilton Harlots 38

Vicious Dishes 27 (eliminated) vs. Death Track Dolls 32

Quarter Finals

Gore-Gore Rollergirls (forfeit) vs. Smoke City Betties

Les Contrabanditas 28 vs. Slaughter Daughters 25

Les Filles du Roi 24 vs. Hamilton Harlots 11

La Racaille 77 vs. Death Track Dolls 17

Semi Finals

Smoke City Betties 23 vs. Les Contrabanditas 33

La Racaille 38 vs Les Filles du Roi 20

Final

Les Contrabanditas 34 vs. La Racaille 49

* Read the Derby Nerd’s commentary.

* Read DNN’s bout-by-bout recap by Justice Feelgood Marshall

Beast of the East 2010 PosterBeast of the East 3: 2010

First Round (Double Elimination)
Thames Fatales 38 vs. Smoke City Betties 11
La Racaille 81 vs. Chicks Ahoy!12
Green Mountain Derby Dames 40
vs. Riot Squad 17
Death Row Dames 63 vs. Venus Fly Tramps 6
Les Contrabanditas 72 vs. Death Track Dolls 9
Gore-Gore Rollergirls 43 vs. GTA Derby Debutantes 20
Vicious Dishes 37 vs. Slaughter Daughters 20
Les Filles du Roi 92 vs. Harlots 6
La Racaille 91 vs. Thames Fatales 0
Chicks Ahoy! 89 vs. Betties 15 (eliminated)
Green Mountain Derby Dames 29 vs. Death Row Dames 15
Venus Fly Tramps 43 vs. Riot Squad 14 (eliminated)
Les Contrabanditas 63 vs. Gore-Gore Rollergirls 17

Derby Debutantes 38 vs. Death Track Dolls 29 (eliminated)
Les Filles du Roi 115 vs. Vicious Dishes 7
Harlots 28 vs. Slaughter Daughters 24 (eliminated)
Thames Fatales 24 vs. Venus Fly Tramps 15 (eliminated)
Death Row Dames 42 vs. Chicks Ahoy! 34 (eliminated)
Gore-Gore Rollergirls 45 vs. Harlots 20 (eliminated)
Vicious Dishes 52 vs. Derby Debutantes 24 (eliminated)

Quarter Finals

La Racaille 57 vs. Vicious Dishes 4
Les Contrabanditas 64 vs. Death Row Dames 11
Gore-Gore Rollergirls 45 vs. Green Mountain Derby Dames 22
Les Filles du Roi 91 vs. Thames Fatales 12

Semi Finals

La Racaille 69 vs. Les Contrabanditas 46
Les Filles du Roi 65 vs. Gore-Gore Roller Girls 1

Third Place

Les Contrabanditas 91 vs. Gores 21

Final

Les Filles du Roi 36 vs. La Racaille 20

*Read the Derby Nerd’s preview and recap.

*Watch the archived bouts.

Beast of the East 2011 posterBeast of the East 4: 2011

First Round (Double Elimination)

Duchesses de Quebec 4 vs. Derby Debutantes 124

La Racaille 55 vs. Riot Squad 7

Chicks Ahoy! 63 vs. Total Knockouts (TKOs) 7

Filles du Roi vs. Death Track Dolls 47

Vicious Dishes 50 vs. Gore-Gore Rollergirls 48

Contrabanditas 148 vs. Chrome Mollys 0

Slaughter Daughters 38 vs. Venus Fly Tramps 28

Thames Fatales 75 vs. Smoke City Betties 12

Derby Debutants 8 vs. La Racaille 100

Duchesses du Quebec 4 vs. Riot Squad 97 (Duchesses eliminated)

Chicks Ahoy! 40 vs. Death Track Dolls 21

TKOs 0 vs. Filles du Roi 81 (TKOs eliminated)

Vicious Dishes 21 vs. Contrabanditas 27

Gore-Gore Rollergirls 131 vs. Chrome Mollys 10 (Mollys eliminated)

Slaughter Daughters 62 vs. Thames Fatales 12

Venus Fly Tramps 66 vs. Smoke City Betties 14 (Betties eliminated)

Derby Debutants 29 vs. Filles du Roi 62 (Debutantes eliminated)

Death Track Dolls 84 vs. Riot Squad 8 (Riot Squad elimanted)

Vicious Dishes 49 vs. Venus Fly Tramps 3 (Tramps eliminated)

Thames Fatales 36 vs. Gore-Gore Rollergirls 49 (Thames eliminated)

Quarter Finals

La Racaille 11 vs. Gore-Gore Rollergirls 88

Contrabanditas 49 vs. Death Track Dolls 58

Chicks Ahoy! 48 vs. Vicious Dishes 8

Slaughter Daughters 81 vs. Filles du Roi 3

Semi Finals

Gore-Gore Rollergirls 51 vs. Death Track Dolls 11

Chicks Ahoy! 19 vs. Slaughter Daughters 33

Third Place

Death Track Dolls 42 vs. Chicks Ahoy! 31

Final

Gore-Gore Rollergirls 85 vs. Slaughter Daughters 87

* Read the Derby Nerd’s preview and recap.

* Watch the archived bouts

Beast of the East 5 (2012)Beast of the East 5: 2012

First Round (Double Elimination)

Chicks Ahoy! 51 vs. Slaughter Daughters 41

La Racaille 46 vs. Gore-Gore Roller Girls 30

Motor City Madames 36 vs. Hammer City Harlots 57

Les Contrabanditas 54 vs. Death Track Dolls 20

Vicious Dishes 139 vs. Reines of Terror 0

Les Filles du Roi 79 vs. Babes of Thunder 8

Derby Debutantes 6 vs. Thames Fatales 112

Smoke City Betties 108 vs. Les Duchesses 13

Chicks Ahoy! 10 vs. La Racaille 39

Slaughter Daughters 72 vs. Gore-Gore Rollergirls 52 (Gores eliminated)

Hamilton Harlots 39 vs. Les Contrabanditas 84

Motor City Madames 28 vs. Death Track Dolls 95 (Motor City eliminated)

Vicious Dishes 30 vs. Les Filles du Roi 47

Reines of Terror 34 vs. Babes of Thunder 71 (Reines eliminated)

Thames Fatales 64 vs. Smoke City Betties 69

Derby Debutantes 30 vs. Les Duchesses 120 (Debutantes eliminated)

La Racaille 59 vs. Death Track Dolls 31 (Dolls eliminated)

Hamilton Harlots 30 vs. Slaughter Daughters 131 (Harlots eliminated)

Vicious Dishes 123 vs. Les Duchesses 0 (Duchesses eliminated)

Thames Fatales 20 vs. Babes of Thunder 77 (Thames eliminated)

Quarter Finals

Chicks Ahoy! 83 vs. Babes of Thunder 22

Les Filles du Roi 67 vs. Slaughter Daughters 71

Les Contrabanditas 54 vs. Vicious Dishes 64

Smoke City Betties 59 vs. La Racaille 78

Semi Finals

Chicks Ahoy! 31 vs. Slaughter Daughters 65

Vicious Dishes 67 vs. La Racaille 48

Third Place

Chicks Ahoy! 87 vs. La Racaille 48

Final

Vicious Dishes 118 vs. Slaughter Daughters 63

* Read the Derby Nerd’s preview and recap

* Watch the archived bouts

BOE 2013 PosterBeast of the East 6: 2013

First Round (Double Elimination)

Chicks Ahoy! 58 vs. Riot Squad 50

Vicious Dishes 25 vs. Les Filles du Roi 50

Death Track Dolls 129 vs. Casses Gueules 7

Thames Fatales 34 vs. Les Contrabanditas 76

TKOs 133 vs. Debutantes 8

Rouge et Gore 12 vs. La Racaille 116

Gore-Gore Rollergirls 29 vs. Slaughter Daughters 105

Luscious Lunch Ladies 37 vs. Smoke City Betties 47

Les Filles du Roi 91 vs. Chicks Ahoy! 13

Vicious Dishes 33 vs. Riot Squad 44 (Dishes eliminated)

Contrabanditas 30 vs. Death Track Dolls 96

Thames Fatales 29 vs. Casses Gueules 18 (Gueules eliminated)

La Racaille 103 vs. TKOs 32

Rouge at Gore 159 vs. Debutantes 32 (Debutantes eliminated)

Smoke City Betties 2 vs. Slaughter Daughters 117

Luscious Lunch Ladies 50 vs. Gore-Gore Rollergirls 94 (Ladies eliminated)

Thames Fatales 53 vs. Chicks Ahoy! 46 (Chicks eliminated)

Riot Squad 57 vs. Contrabanditas 86 (Riot Squad eliminated)

Gore-Gore Rollergirls 42 vs. TKOs 85 (Gores eliminated)

Smoke City Betties 56 vs. Rouge et Gore 58 (Betties eliminated)

Quarter Finals

Les Filles du Roi 76 vs. Rouge et Gore 26

Contrabanditas 64 vs. La Racaille 117

TKOs 35 vs. Death Track Dolls 79

Thames Fatales 31 vs. Slaughter Daughters 113

Semi Finals

Filles du Roi 60 vs. La Racaille 85

Death Track Dolls 40 vs. Slaughter Daughters 68

Third Place

Death Track Dolls 136 vs. Filles du Roi 29

Final

La Racaille 74 vs. Slaughter Daughters 103

Read the Derby Nerd’s preview and recap.

VIDEO: Watch Double Elimination Archives Part 1 here.  Watch Part 2 here. Watch quarter finals here. Watch the third place and championship games here.

BEAST 2014 posterBeast of the East 7: 2014

First Round (Double Elimination)

Smoke City Betties 49 vs. Casse Gueules 54

La Racaille 117 vs. Riot Squad 32

Gore-Gore Rollergirls 125 vs. Motor City Madames 22

Les Filles du Roi 78 vs. Atom Smashers 50

Slaughter Daughters 40 vs. Lunch Ladies 80

Les Contrabanditas 122 vs. Thames Fatales 23

Killer Queens 30 vs. Death Track Dolls 91

Rouge et Gore 61 vs. Prime Sinisters 79

Casses Gueules 106 vs. La Racaille 69

Smoke City Betties 36 vs. Riot Squad 66 (Betties eliminated)

Gore-Gore Rollergirls 53 vs. Les Filles du Roi 47

Motor City Madames 57 vs. Atom Smashers 122 (Madames eliminated)

Luscious Lunch Ladies 60 vs. Les Contrabanditas 39

Slaughter Daughters 60 vs. Thames Fatales 45 (Thames eliminated)

Death Track Dolls 55 vs. Prime Sinisters 26

Killer Queens 29 vs. Rouge et Gore 135 (Queens eliminated)

La Racaille 101 vs. Atom Smashers 33 (Smashers eliminated)

Les Filles du Roi 47 vs. Riot Squad 89 (FDR eliminated)

Les Contrabanditas 35 vs. Rouge et Gore 40 (Ditas eliminated)

Prime Sinisters 57 vs. Slaughter Daughters 21 (Daughters eliminated)

Quarter Finals

Casses-Gueules 50 vs. Prime Sinisters 46

Luscious Lunch Ladies 62 vs. Riot Squad 71 (Overtime)

Gore-Gore Rollergirls 64 vs. Rouge et Gore 61

Death Track Dolls 61 vs. La Racaille 86

Semi Finals

Casses-Gueules 75 vs. Riot Squad 68

Gore-Gore Rollergirls 68 vs. La Racaille 67

Third Place

La Racaille 148 vs. Riot Squad 131

Final

Casses Gueules 114 vs. Gore-Gore Rollergirls 129

*Read the Derby Nerd’s preview and recap.

*Video: Watch Day 1 here (begins without commentary); Watch Day 2 here.

boe-15-poster.jpgBeast of the East 8: 2015

First Round (Double Elimination)

Total Knock-Outs 93 vs. Beauty School Dropouts 45

Les Filles du Roi 90 vs. Casse-Gueules 70

Slaughter Daughters 164 vs. Thames Fatales 2

Les Contrabanditas 61 vs. Gore-Gore Rollergirls 74

Prime Sinisters 89 vs. Atom Smashers 56

La Racaille 117 vs. Chicks Ahoy! 40

Venus Fly Tramps 73 vs. Death Track Dolls 39

Rouge et Gore 130 vs. Skateful Dead 25

Total Knock-Outs 61 vs. Les Filles du Roi 78

Beauty School Dropouts 49 vs. Casse-Gueules 80 (Beauties eliminated)

Slaughter Daughters 71 vs. Gore-Gore Rollergirls 70

Thames Fatales 25 vs. Les Contrabanditas 154 (Fatales eliminated)

Prime Sinisters 81 vs. La Racaille 50

Atoms Smashers 62 vs. Chicks Ahoy! 63 (Smashers eliminated)

Venus Fly Tramps 68 vs. Rouge et Gore 91

Death Track Dolls 48 vs. Skateful Dead 80 (Dolls eliminated)

Total Knock-Outs 40 vs. Les Contrabanditas 92 (TKOs eliminated)

Gore-Gore Rollergirls 25 vs. Casse-Gueules 58 (Gores eliminated)

La Racaille 59 vs. Skateful Dead 77 (Racaille eliminated)

Venus Fly Tramps 128 vs. Chicks Ahoy! 24 (Chicks eliminated)

Quarter Finals

Les Filles du Roi 70 vs. Venus Fly Tramps 49

Prime Sinisters 34 vs. Casse-Gueules 145

Slaughter Daughters 88 vs. Skateful Dead 78

Rouge et Gore 55 vs. Les Contrabanditas 31

Semi Finals

Les Filles du Roi 29 vs. Casse-Gueules 83

Slaughter Daughters 10 vs. Rouge et Gore 84

Third Place

Les Filles du Roi 116 vs. Slaughter Daughters 110

Final

Casse-Gueules 161 vs. Rouge et Gore 142

* Read the Derby Nerd’s preview and recap.

 

 

Chicks Dispatch Dolls With Ease in ToRD Semifinal

Dolls Chicks Russell

This was the fourth semi-final meeting between the Chicks and the Dolls, but the first since 2011. The Chicks have won all four games. (Photo by Greg Russell)

After a regular season matchup that saw these two teams separated by only 25 points, expectations were high for Toronto Roller Derby’s semi-final showdown between three-time ToRD champs Chicks Ahoy! and two-time champs the Death Track Dolls; they were only heightened when the Chicks—tops in the league during the regular season—lost their page playoff quarterfinal to the Gore-Gore Rollergirls, while the Dolls easily toppled the Smoke City Betties in theirs. However, when the final whistle blew, it concluded the most complete 60-minute game that the Chicks have put together this season, one that resulted in a statement making 238-74 win, a victory that set up a historic, and perhaps fitting, showdown against the Gores, their long-time rivals, in the Battle for the Boot X.

Rocket Sleeper Neil

Dolls jammer Holly Rocket attempts to evade a hit from Chicks pivot Sleeper Hold. (Photo by Neil Gunner)

Breakout rookie jammer Holly Rocket got the Dolls off to a quick start with lead jammer status and 4 quick points on the opening jam, but it would be a misleading start as the Chicks would roar back with five straight lead jammers to take a 32-7 lead and prompt the Dolls to take their first time out (one of two in the half). Early on, the game was fast paced and wide open, leading to relatively spread out packs; it was a style of play far removed from the slow, defense-heavy style that had given the Dolls some success this season, but the Chicks seemed to thrive, winning one-on-one battles in the pack and transitioning nicely between offense and defense.

While the Dolls’ time out was followed by back-to-back leads (the only time they’d pull this off in the half), it didn’t lead to anything sustainable and was followed by remarkable stretch of seven straight lead jammers for the Chicks, a dominant run that saw them outscore the Dolls 51-0—concluded by a 28-point power jam skated by Boxcar—and all but put the game away. Boxcar was actually one of the big storylines in this playoff game. The first-year transfer had no luck in the regular season game against the Dolls managing only 1.8 points per jam and a 27% lead percentage; however, in the first half alone, the veteran scored 63 points (10.5 PPJ) on the strength of a perfect 100% lead percentage (leading to full game totals of 101 and 92%). She was not alone in having success either, as of the fours Chicks jammers only rookie Banshee was held to less than double-digit totals in the opening period: Monster Muffin had 51 points and Pink Slamminade notched 28.

Ro Bomber Boxcar Greg

Betty Bomber and Robotomy attempt to contain Boxcar who torched the Dolls for 101 points. (Photo by Greg Russell)

While the Chicks began to tighten up the packs late in the first half, seemingly playing into the Dolls’ hands, the Chicks also played a relatively cleaner first half overall and the pack advantages lead to clear defensive advantages as well. Despite continuing to play well as a duo with Commander Will Wrecker, veteran Doll Dawson had an uncharacteristic five penalties in the opening half, and Stringer Belle eventually fouled out with an unusual eight penalties, an indicator of how out of sorts the Dolls were. Of the 21 first half penalties the team accumulated, four of them were to jammers, and the Chicks took advantage of those power jam opportunities to extend their considerable lead to 148-34 at the break.

If the result was not already a foregone conclusion at half, the Chicks made sure to dispel any notions of a Dolls’ comeback with a thoroughly crushing opening 10 minutes of the second period: over the opening nine jams of the frame, the Chicks nabbed all lead jammer statuses and put the game definitively out of reach with a 39-1 run; a run that increased their lead to 187-35.

Rabies Biggley Gunner

Chicks pivot Rosemary’s Rabies and Biggley Smallz hold back Scorpion Mouse (AKA Devochka). (Photo by Neil Gunner)

Biggley Smallz continues to be the linchpin of the Chicks’ pack providing reliable one-on-one last-line of defense blocking at the front of the pack; heavy hitter Vag Lightning also played one of her best all-around games of the season, continuing to deliver devastating hits (including one late shoulder-to-sternum blow to relief jammer Ellen Rage that left the Doll slow to get up on the inside of the track), Vag also delivered timely offense and played a—comparatively—clean game. But there truly were strong performances and stand out moments through the Chicks’ lineup and their pack was bolstered by the return of pivot/jammer Sleeper Hold, who was excellent with the stripe; the 2015 ToRD leading scorer was never needed in the jammer rotation on this night.

Vag Neil

Chicks blocker Vag Lightning had a strong game, providing big hits and timely offense. (Photo by Neil Gunner)

Midway through the second, with the game out of reach, the Dolls did go on their most spirited run of the bout. Nabbing five leads in a row (and six of seven) culminating in a 26-4 run that inspired the bench, but didn’t put too much of a dent in the deficit. While the ToRD season is a wrap for the Dolls now, the future does look potentially bright. Dasilva continues to develop into a on-track defensive force and Wheatabitch has steadily improved all season, both benefiting from playing with vet Betty Bomber this season (who, in addition to linemate Robotomy, announced that she will be moving at the conclusion of the season); the most optimistic aspect of the team is the jammer rotation where Bat Ma’am (29 points, 33%) and Holly Rocket (28, 43%) have shown that they can lead an offense and Ellen Rage is developing into a viable double threat.

However, that mid-period run was short-lived and the Chicks recovered to close out strong, wrapping up the 164-point playoff victory with relative ease and extending their season.

The Dolls are not done for the year, however, as they will travel to Montreal for the Beast of the East in a few weeks with the Betties and the Gores, while the Chicks now have nearly two months to prepare for their sixth Battle for Boot against long-time foes the Gores on June 11. The two teams have each won three previous championships.

*ToRD’s farm team, the D-VAS, also kicked off its 2016 season on Saturday, falling to Hamilton’s Hammer City Rollergirls 218-109. Both games will be archived on layer9.ca. Also, Rogers TV broadcast the games; keep an eye out for intermittent replays in the coming weeks.

DVAS Hammer greg.jpg

The D-VAS and Hammer City gave fans a glimpse of the future of the respective leagues. (Photo by Greg Russell)

 

Canadian Power Rankings: April 1, 2016

Captain Lou El Bammo, Dick Dafone, and Derby Nerd rank Canada’s top A-level travel teams every two months (or so). Read the the final 2015 Power Rankings here.

TEAM (League) CHANGE NOTES (Rollergirl.ca /WFTDA rank)
1. New Skids on the Block (Montreal Roller Derby)

Montreal Roller Derby: New Skids on the Block

 –  For the past two seasons it seemed as if it were only a matter of time before Montreal was knocked from its perch atop Canadian roller derby, but last year they once again pulled away from the crowd. They kicked off 2016 with a massive 264-point win against Rideau Valley and retain top spot.(1 / 15)
2. Terminal City All Stars (Terminal City Roller Girls)Terminal City All Stars
 –  Although yet to see action in 2016, Terminal City is coming off of the second most successful WFTDA playoff run in Canadian history and seem to have bolstered their roster for another push in 2016. (2 / 24)
3.Calgary All Stars (Calgary Roller Derby Association)Calgary All Stars Logo +1   Idle thus far in the season, Calgary is coming off of a season in which they lost nine in a row to drop out of the playoffs: but those nine games featured some fantastic opponents (Arch Rival, Rat City…) and with the experience gained, the team seems poised to truly breakout. (4 / 62)
4.Rideau Valley Vixens (Rideau Valley Roller Girls)

Vixens Logo

 -1   A somewhat surprisingly narrow win over Capital City to kick off 2016 was followed by a big loss to Montreal, both results causing the Vixens to drop a spot. There are some questions surrounding the offense, but a 2016 schedule featuring strong opponents could help excel growth. (5 / 38)
5. Misfit Militia (Orangeville Roller Girls) 

Misfit Militia Logo

unranked  New league, new roster, same steady roller derby. Recently granted full WFTDA status, the once rogue Misfits have now gone mainstream and the rest of the country (if not the WFTDA) should look out. A season opening 163-point spanking of Killamazoo is a sign of things to come. (3/-)
6Tri-City Thunder (Tri-City Rller Derby)Tri-City Thunder Logo  Dealing with a significant roster overhaul, Thunder has looked uneven so far in 2016, but have done enough to hold down their power rankings spot. A big loss to Queen City was balanced out by victories against Quebec and Toronto. (6 / 51)

7All Stars (Toronto Roller Derby)New CNP Logo

 -2  With only three skaters remaining from the roster that kicked off last season, the 2016 ToRD All Stars could be in for a rough ride this year. A victory over Quebec was followed by losses to long-time rivals Tri-City and Queen City (by 161 points) that drops them two spots. (10 / 42)
8. Lumbersmacks (Muddy River Rollers)Lumbersmacks Logo +1  Muddy River has followed a successful 2015 season with two straight wins to kick off this year: A first victory over Quebec (in its third try) was followed by a surprisingly one-sided victory over Capital City. (8 / 105)
9. All Stars (Winnipeg Roller Derby League) winnipeg logo -1  Another team idle thus far in 2016 (they will kick off their season in a few weeks against Fargo Moorhead), Winnipeg is given the benefit of the doubt based on their strong 2015 season. (14 / 107)
10. Dolly Rogers (Capital City Derby Dolls)
Capital City Derby Dolls Logo
unranked  After skirting the edges of the Power Rankings for years, Capital City finally breaks through. It’s been a busy, but uneven, start to 2016 with losses to Muddy River and Rideau Valley balanced out with a somewhat surprising win over Montreal’s Sexpos and a sanctioned win against Quebec.  (11/ -)

The Rankings

Ten years into the Canadian flat track experiment and one thing remains the same: Montreal Roller Derby is the model league in competitive Canadian flat track. After a record-setting run through the WFTDA D1 playoffs that saw them come within 28 points of qualifying for champs, Montreal seems set up for another successful 2016. Terminal City also had an impressive playoff, matching Montreal’s previous Canadian-best result, and at the beginning of 2016, these two teams seem to be a lap ahead of the rest of the Canadian competition.

2016 could be a big year of change in the Canadian scene and these changes are reflected in this Power Ranking. Misfit Militia, now the travel team of the Orangeville Roller Girls, is back in top-flight action and (re)debuts at an impressive 5th place. This team has massive potential to do some serious damage in sanctioned play, but it does remain to be seen how they hold up against a higher quality of opponent than they have been playing for the past few seasons. The other debutantes, Capital City Derby Dolls’ Dolly Rogers, have long been a team on the Rankings Crew’s watch list and finally cracks the Top 10, literally knocking Quebec’s Les Duchesses from the list with an  early-season victory. Long Ottawa’s second team, a narrow loss to the Vixens last month proved that they have made up a lot of ground on their cross-city rivals.

While Calgary, Rideau Valley, Tri-City, Muddy River and Winnipeg (more or less) hold their spots in the rankings, Toronto tumbles two spots. After a massive roster overhaul, it could take some time for this team to gel, and it could take a significant amount of time to build the roster back up to rival the Toronto rosters that spent years battling Montreal and Terminal City for the top two spots in the Power Rankings.

The Watch List

Anarchy Angels (Mainland Misfits Roller Derby) (9th)

E-Ville Dead (E-Ville Roller Derby) (12th)

Les Duchesses (Roller Derby Quebec) (13th)

Brute-Leggers (Royal City Roller Girls) (15th)

There are no surprises on the watch list to kick off 2016. Of the four, three have, at one time or another, been ranked in the Top 10, while the Brute-Leggers made their way onto the Watch List by the end of last season. All full WFTDA members, these teams have the potential to play higher calibre competition and could very easily see themselves climb back into the upper echelons of Canadian roller derby.

Les Duchesses has slipped out of the Top 10 due to losses to Capital City and Muddy River, but have already scored a 2016 win over Royal City (who themselves scored a win over Lansing so far this season). The Anarchy Angels made their WFTDA sanctioned debut at the recent Wild West Showdown and destroyed the low-level competition there, winning three games by a combined score of 1245-138 (!!). E-Ville had similar (unsanctioned) results at the same tournament against the same competition, winning their two games 767-150.

Players to Watch 2016

There’s a theme to this season’s Players to Watch: four of the six skaters we’ve got our eyes on are recent transfers to their team. Starting at the top, Bazinga has joined her former Pile O’ Bones teammates (Palmer and Maiden Sane) in transferring to Terminal City and adds another solid blocker to an already impressive pack. Calgary’s jammer rotation is bolstered by the arrival of double threat Hilary Boswell from Saskatoon. Speaking of double threats, former Hammer City skater JANEgerous has joined the Tri-City roster and has already been a key player for the team early in 2016, jamming and blocking as needed at the recent Quad City Chaos, her presence making a potentially painful rebuild a little easier to manage. Finally, part of the reason Royal City is a team to watch has a lot to do with the team’s depth, and their jammer rotation has loaded with another weapon in the form of the jukey Katie McPherson who transferred from Wellington Roller Derby at the end of  last year.

There are, however, a few home-grown skaters that we are watching as well. Toronto’s Beaver Mansbridge was first called up to the All Stars for the 2015 playoffs and at this year’s season-opening Quad City Chaos was the key kog in the team’s jammer rotation. Powerful, athletic, Beaver is poised for a breakout season in 2016. Similarly poised for a breakout is Montreal’s Falcon Punch. This Team France skater is no newcomer, and even had a great 2015 season for the Skids, but this year she will be the centerpiece of Montreal’s offense and expected to carry more of the offensive load.

Nerd Glasses

*These rankings were compiled by the Derby Nerd, Captain Lou El Bammo, Dick Dafone

*These are the first Power Rankings of the year. Read the final Power Rankings of 2015 here.

-Respectful disagreement and debate is encouraged!-

Queen City Cleans Up at QCC 2016

Toronto Queen Neil

Toronto’s All Stars and Queen City’s Lake Effect Furies dueled in the Saturday night headliner at QCC 2016. Queen City took the win 257-96. (Photo by Neil Gunner)

Coming into Quad City Chaos 2016, three of the four teams were looking for early boosts on their way back to a WFTDA Division 1 playoff while the fourth was simply looking to make a strong impression and gauge where they stood against far more experienced opponents. Given these goals, the results were uneven.

Roller Derby Quebec’s Les Duchesses certainly left an impression, getting better as the weekend progressed: a fairly big loss to Toronto followed a narrower, more impressive, loss to Tri-City before they capped off the tournament with a win over Royal City’s Brute-Leggers. Tri-City and Toronto, meanwhile, show that they both still have some considerable work to do to return to the D1 playoffs. Given the results on the weekend, that is virtually out of reach for Toronto, who could find themselves in a battle for a D2 playoff spot come the end of the regular season.

Buffalo’s Queen City—long the little sister of the three—looks poised to return to the top division for the second year in a row and, arguably, looks better than they ever have in WFTDA play.

SANCTIONED RESULTS

Qeeun Dominant Gunner

Queen City dominated the story and were led by strong pack play from Bricks Hit-house (left) and co-captain Tabrina Schreier. (Photo by Neil Gunner)

Queen City simply dominated QCC on Saturday. In the midst of a three-game losing streak to their Tri-City rivals (albeit by a combined score of 30 points), the Lake Effect Furies overwhelmed Thunder in the two teams’ opening game of the tournament. Tri-City managed to take a slim lead on the third jam of the game, before the Furies grabbed it back a jam later. By the break, they were up by 77 points. The second half saw them pull away even more and closed out strong, holding Thunder scoreless over the final eight jams on their way to the 209-71 win.

Queen City and Toronto provided a remarkably similar story. Although the Furies had ended a three-game losing streak to their Toronto rivals in last year’s playoffs (by only three points, mind you), it had been five years since their only other win against the ToRD All Stars. Also similar was the back-and-forth start: Toronto took an early lead that was quickly overcome. And once the Furies pulled ahead, they never looked back. Up by 93 points at the half, they kicked off the second with a 63-13 run on their way to a remarkable 257-96 victory, easily the largest gap between these two teams in their six-game, six-year competitive history (Toronto had won a 2012 showdown by 92 points, the previous largest gap).

Thunder jane aggro Greg

Tri-City Thunder went 2-1 and featured strong play from double threats JANEgerous (left) and Aggrosaurus. (Photo by Greg Russell)

Despite the loss to Queen City, rebuilding Tri-City Thunder has to feel good about the tournament. The loss to the Furies was followed by an at-times frustrating game against Quebec that they, nonetheless, managed to win by 54 points. And the team ended the tournament on the highest of notes, notching its first win against Toronto since 2010. It was the first time the teams had met since QCC 2012, with Toronto seemingly distancing itself from its southern Ontario rivals. Early in this game, it did look as if Toronto would hold Thunder off once again, but patience and persistence paid off and eventually Toronto ran into penalty trouble (a theme on the weekend), lost its leading scorer to injury (another theme) and were down 113-85 at the break. The hosts fought back early in the second, at one point pulling within three points (127-124) before Tri-City once again pulled away, controlling the game late on the way to the 49-point win and a 2-1 tournament record.

Toronto Quebec Neil

Toronto’s All Stars and Quebec’s Les Duchesses kicked off QCC 2016; the game was the best of the tournament for the hosts. (Photo by Neil Gunner)

Despite the losses to Toronto and Tri-City on Saturday, Quebec should also head home feeling very good about their tournament experience. Those two opponents represent two of the most experienced and high-ranked teams that they had ever faced (along with Montreal’s Skids last year). Then, on Sunday against Guelph’s Royal City, Les Duchesses managed to pick up its first WFTDA sanctioned win after an 0-4 start to the season. It was an impressive 189-133 win against a surprisingly undisciplined Brute-Leggers team that was hit with jammer penalty problems in particular.

Finally, for the rebuilding hosts (who lost two of their more experienced players to injuries at the last minute), it was an ultimately disappointing season-opening tournament. However, it was also an important first step in a year that could be a challenging one. The experience gained by the Toronto skaters, many of whom were playing at this level for the first time, cannot be overlooked as well (only three skaters remain on the charter roster from last year’s QCC). After this weekend, Division 1 seems like too high a hope, and the team may even be in a fight to hold on to a Division 2 playoff spot

REGULATION RESULTS

Sexpos Greg

Montreal’s smothering defense and explosive offense was far too much for the other B-teams in the tournament. Les Sexpos outscored Toronto and Queen City by a combined 590 points. (Photo by Greg Russell)

Montreal, Queen City and Toronto all squared off at the B-team level as well, with Les Sexpos, as expecting, dominating, although the level at which they dominated may have been surprising: a 272-point win over Toronto on Saturday was followed by a 318-point win over Queen City on Sunday. This is the first year for Queen City’s B-team, the Subzero Sirens, and they went winless, dropping their Sunday showdown against Toronto 244-98. Toronto’s reshaped travel-team structure has skaters doing double duty, and the bolstered B-team roster on Sunday perhaps represented the best performance by a Toronto team on the weekend (although penalties remained a noticeable issue, with five foul outs marring the team’s Saturday performance against Montreal).

STAND-OUT PERFORMANCES

Banshee Greg

Toronto’s Banshee continued her breakout rookie season by winning B-team jammer MVP. (Photo by Greg Russell)

There were, as to be expected a number of standout performances at QCC, including the eventual tournament MVPs. B-Team jammer MVP was the scrappy, seemingly tireless Banshee from Toronto, who is in the midst of a breakout rookie house league season as well while playing for the Chicks Ahoy!. Queen City’s Librawlian took home jammer MVP for the A-team portion of the event and deservedly so as she is emerging as one of the elite jammers in the game. Les Sexpos’ Magnum PEI was B-team blocker MVP; the powerful former New Skid was the anchor of a dominant Montreal pack. Tri-City’s AnneX was the A-Team blocker MVP: a multi-talented blocker and on-track leader who emerged as a skater to watch during last year’s playoffs was the key cog in Tri-City’s pack on the weekend.

Boxcar Neil

Veteran skater Boxcar, who transferred to Toronto in the off season, was great both in the pack and with the star this weekend. (Photo by Neil Gunner)

There were, of course other stand outs as well. Quebec’s Beat’on the Quads continues to develop into a force with the jammer star. Tri-City’s Crazy Squirrel had a slow start to the tournament but by the Sunday final against Toronto was back in full flight. Before suffering an injury in the final game of the weekend, Toronto’s Beaver Mansbridge continued her 2016 emergence as a top-flight jammer. Queen City’s packs dominated all weekend and featured a number of strong performances, but Bricks Hit-house stood out in particular for her strength and persistence.

2016 is the tenth anniversary of flat track roller derby in Canada, and it’s worth noting some of the historical figures who also took part in the tournament. Remarkably, four skaters took part who can trace their careers back to that first year of Canadian derby. Montreal’s Lady J and Cheese Grater (who way back in ’06 was actually skating for Hammer City’s Steel Town Tank Girls) and Toronto’s Mia Culprit and Boxcar (who was skating for Montreal at the time) all took part in the historic Betties’ D-Day tournament in Toronto in August 2006. Boxcar, back to high-level competitive derby, was strong in the pack and eventually shifted to the jammer rotation where she had continued success.

Nerd Glasses

*For complete results visit the QCC 2016 page at flattrackstats.com.

*The games were all broadcast live on Layer9.ca and simulcast on WFTDA.TV. They are all archived at layer9.ca.

Quad City Chaos 2016: Preview

QCC Banner

This weekend Toronto Roller Derby will host the 7th annual Quad Chaos, an annual Canadian roller derby tradition dating back to 2010 when Montreal, Hamilton and Vancouver joined Toronto for a weekend-long round-robin tournament. That historic weekend also featured the first all-Canadian WFTDA matchup (Montreal and Hamilton were actually the first international participants to play a sanctioned game outside of the US).

Over time the tournament grew in prestige, and the 2014 and 2015 versions were full D1 competitive tournaments, annually providing the best flat track roller derby in the country. This year, the narrative is a little different, but the stakes are arguably higher as the tournament features a few up-and-coming WFTDA Canadian teams and three teams—Toronto, Tri-City and Queen City—battling for their Division 1 lives.

TorontoRollerDerbyAll-Stars

Toronto Roller Derby All Stars (42nd)

The hosts are the highest ranked team in the tournament and in 2015 ran the table, impressively knocking off Boston, Steel City and Rideau Valley to kick off its 2015 season and improve its overall record at the tournament to 12-6. This year, however, the team that will take to the track looks vastly different. Only three skaters return from the roster that swept last year’s Quad City Chaos. With so much change to the team, it’s hard to judge how things will go this year and QCC will mark the 2016 debut of the team that is coming off of a rough 2015 that saw them go 6-9 (including playoffs) but only 3-9 after the QCC sweep.

Toronto has a deep history with two of its competitors in the tournament, although in the case of Tri-City, it’s been a while since the two teams met on the track: four years to be exact. Toronto is 2-1 against Tri-City with both wins coming at the Quad City Chaos (2011, and ‘12 versions). Since 2010, Toronto has faced their Buffalo rivals five times, winning three in a row from 2011-2013 before getting upset 232-229 by Queen City in the first round of the WFTDA playoffs last year. Toronto has never faced Quebec.

Furies-Team

Queen City Roller Girls: Lake Effect Furies (47th)

Queen City is coming off of a strong year in which they made their Division 1 playoff debut (where they had the distinct pleasure of getting stomped by Gotham). They were 4-4 in regular season sanctioned play before a 1-3 showing in the playoffs that included a thrilling last-jam three-point victory over Toronto in the first round, marking the first time they’d beaten them since 2010. This is the Queen City’s second QCC appearance, and they’ll be looking to improve upon the 0-3 mark they recorded the last time they were here in 2013.

The Furies will be playing two games this weekend, taking on the hosts and Tri-City. They should still be riding high from that last-minute victory over Toronto and with a roster virtually unchanged from last season may be able to make it back-to-back wins vs. the hosts. Queen City has had similar trouble with Tri-City over the years. The first meeting between the two teams was way back in 2010 when Queen City suffered a narrow 20-point loss. They tables were flipped in 2011, but in the three meetings since that time, Queen City has been unable to overcome their rivals, culminating in a tight 12-point loss at last May’s Beaver Fever.

Queen City kicked off its 2016 season with a crushing win over Roc City earlier this month.

Thunder 16

Tri-City Roller Derby: Thunder (51st)

Tri-City is coming off its second straight Division 1 playoff appearance, but as with their Toronto counterparts, slipped to last in their division playoff last year. However, Thunder had a strong regular season going 7-3, and while a number of core skaters are gone from the team, their roster remains more consistent than Toronto’s and they have a deep, experienced coaching staff. Tri-City has twice appeared at QCC, but not since 2012. It has a total record of 3-3 at the tournament with two losses coming to Toronto and the other to Montreal.

Tri-City has not played Toronto since that 2012 tournament and last earned a victory over its southern Ontario counterparts in October 2010. Overall Tri-City has a favourable 4-1 record against Queen City dating back to 2010 as well, and since 2012 has managed narrow 16-, 2-, and then 12-point victories over the Furies. Last year’s win, a 12-point upset at Beaver Fever, kicked off a 4-1 run that essentially clinched Thunder’s D1 playoff spot. Tri-City Thunder has never faced its third opponent, Quebec.

Duchesses 16

Roller Derby Quebec: Les Duchesses (unranked)

The biggest question mark at QCC 2016 is the unranked Les Duchesses. A fresh face on the WFTDA scene, RDQ has yet to garner any ranking points although their close rivalry with 105th ranked Muddy River gives a sense of where they stand. Les Duchesses went 4-2 last season with their only losses coming to Montreal (both the Skids and the Sexpos). However, the league has been turning heads at every other level: both home teams squared off in last year’s Beast of the East final and their 9-skater farm team won the Fresh and Furious tournament. RDQ seems poised to break out.

However, Les Duchesses’ WFTDA career has gotten off to a rough start, with 2016 season-opening losses to Ottawa’s Capital City (146-113) and Muddy River (203-182), a team they had beaten three times over the previous two seasons. At this level, RDQ has never faced Toronto, Tri-City, or their Sunday opponent Royal City, whose 104th place WFTDA ranking puts them theoretically even with their Quebec opponents.

QCC 16

The Rest of the Pack

With Queen City’s Furies not playing on Sunday, Royal City’s Brute-Leggers (104th) will come to town to take on Quebec. 8-1 in sanctioned play in 2015, their first year as full members of the WFTDA, the Brutes are a tough, smart team capable of punching well above their weight, and opened 2016 with a decisive win over 98th-ranked Lansing. Their showdown with Quebec should be a fascinating matchup between two teams on the rise.

2013 marked the beginning of B-team play at QCC, and that tradition continues this year. Toronto will play Montreal’s Sexpos (who first appeared at QCC in 2014) and Queen City’s Sub Zero Sirens, while the Sirens and Sexpos will also square off. The Sub Zero Sirens have already picked up two wins in 2016, while the Sexpos suffered a loss to Capital City in its season opener.

Nerd Glasses

**All games will be produced by William Clarke (in collaboration with producer/director Honey Boom Boom and tournament head announcer Mr. Whistler), broadcast at layer9.ca, and simulcast on WFTDA.TV. For a complete schedule click here.