Photographer: Patrik Blom
- How come you started playing derby?
My husband had seen Whip it on the flight on his way to Las vegas, he called home and said that this is something you ought to do, that it was really something for me. Then my sister in law told me that a league was about to start in Gothenburg, but at that time I was pregnant, so… But after I was done with that and had become Villa again and the family was alive and kicking, by coincidence I noticed on Facebook that there was a tryout, may 8th, 2011, ooiiiih! I didn’t dare attending on my own, because I´m so “old”, so I brought my friend Frida (Free da Fiction) and we got hooked! Seriously, I loved it from the very beginning and I knew that I would! I bought my quads (skates) before I went to the tryout actually.
- Why derby?
Why not?…No, but it´s a tough sport, a full contact sport. There is speed, bruises, sisterhood, guts and determination, love! The most beautiful thing is that you can go anywhere in the world, if there’s a derby team where you´re at then you’re welcome to practice with them and you can crash on anyones sofa in the team, in general, as a derby player, you’re so welcome everywhere with other players and that so nice!
You get derbyfied: I’ve never in my life worn pantyhose, no way I would go to a resturant and eat wearing only tights and panties. Haha. You dress the way you want to, you have a derbynamne, you have a warriorface if you want to. Everyone finds their own fierceness and we all own the track! I feel like a superhero out there, I´m not regular me, you can connect with your inner alter ego… Moahaha!
- What is your background pre-derby?
I’ve always done sports in some form, soccer, rhythmic gymnastics, kick-and thai boxing… Soccer was the one thing that really won my heart, played for 20 years home in Slätta (Skövde). I moved to Gothenburg 2004 and would have loved to play soccer here but couldn’t bear playing on gravel since I was used to playing on grass, my winner instinct and my skin couldn’t bear sliding on gravel since I always believe I’m playing on grass. I’ve also skated a bit on inlines, on a very chill and relaxed lets-skate-a-bit-after-work-level.
Photographer: Patrik Blom
- How is the process going from skating as a rookie to bouting?
Working out, studying, understanding…Breathing, living derby – which is very easy to do. Just like everything else: practice makes perfect, then when you think you are ready, you do the minimum skills. It’s a test consisting of both a practical and a theoretical part. If you pass then you’re ready to start practicing for bouts. The whole way up to that point is a blast! Now I’ve played in two bouts, one in Malmö and one here in Gothenburg and it’s da booooomb! So worth it and insanely cool!
- What is your favorite position to play in derby and why?
I’m a jammer and I think that it´s awesomely fun, it’s also hard but kick ass when it just works out. I also enjoy being that lonely blocker that’s a pain in the ass, but so far I’ve only done that on practice. The position as a jammer, for me, is a challenge. I have to, during the game, be fast, explosive, tricky, tiny, big, strong, get up, get down, determined, quick on my feet – you name it!
- How did you prepare for the bout, both as a team and on your own?
We practice as usual, take it a bit slower the practice just before the bout to feel the calm before the storm, work on the unity in the team. We have meet ups and discuss strategies and such.
Myself, I try to compose myself, calm my thoughts and go over in my head how I should play, which just happens, it’s not something I have to force, I think of alternatives on the track, sneaky practices in my head and make small but fast movements when I´m at work. I try not to be too happy, rather finding my cool.
Photographer: Patrik Blom
- Do you have a specific ritual, both as a team and on your own?
I scream very high and short right before, it really helps…haha.
As a team, we huddle upp, hands in the middle and shout “Mammi ska ha sitt!”, which is a inside joke, coming from our head coach from one of our bootcamp afterparties with Kallio last year…haha…it’s just a thing that has gone into our hearts really!
- How did it feel playing on your hometown?
Freaking. Fantastic. I know I curse a lot, but I find I need it to reinforce the description of that feeling. It was insane! We thought there would be coming like 300-350 persons and we had closed off the seats on one side but had to open it when people were let in and one side started to fill and then that other side filled as well. What’s happening? We were kind of in chock, of happiness. My god! Over 850 persons attended! It was crazy! The audience just killed it! I get chills just from thinking of all the support they showed us! Everytime one of our jammers got through the pack they almost blew off the roof with their cheering! You never heard the ref calls, the whistles, you just heard the cheers and it was so awesome and I just wanna do it again and again! I am so grateful and in love with the Gothenburg supporters and so proud of my team, we killed it, we derbyfied Gothenburg and that’s that for that!
- Were there any moment that were especially memorable before/ during or after the bout?
Before: Seeing all the people that just kept pouring into the place.
During: Hearing the audience screaming my name, hearing them roaring everytime a jammer passed. I also love those moments when you pass the pack and never get touched, it doesn’t happen a lot, but when it does…How we stepped it up in the second half and just owned it! How we work together and just make it work!
After: All the joy during our after bout dinner, how freaking awesome we were, what a fantastic league, being grateful for so many people helping out, thus making the bout possible! GBGRD fooo shoooe!
Photographer: Fredrik Tanfara
- How do you view your individual efforts in the game?
It felt like I had three blockers on me all the time and that was rough. I really did my best then but I know I can do better, I just have to get quicker in my thought process. But I did good.
- Are there anything you are especially proud of?
I’m proud of our league, of the audience and supporters, I would have wanted to perform a little better, but in the future I will… and next time, may 12th, we´re gonna win against Hamburg in Hamburg! Word!
- So, whats ahead in your derbyfuture?
Keep practicing, both on and off skates, going to bootcamps, learning new things, refine old skils, just go go go til this body breaks down, savor every moment. We are here to stay! GBGRD 4-ever!