A referee from a Birmingham roller derby league has made UKRDA history by becoming the first man to represent his league at the organisation.
Major Travis T, who is affiliated to Central City Rollergirls, joins existing CCR reps Nancy Spinatra and Germaine Leer. He said, “Whilst I might not be a player, I think that it’s important that there is a voice present from the other side of the track. In order for UKRDA and UK roller derby to be successful, the standards of the officials working the games need to be of the highest quality.”
Although roller derby is a predominantly female sport, men’s derby has grown in popularity in the UK during 2011, and UKRDA is open to women’s, men’s, or co-ed adult leagues, and encourages diversity.
Nancy Spinatra, who is also the organisation’s president, said she is pleased to have Travis on board. “Roller derby is a sport for male and female skaters, refs and NSO’s, and Travis brings with him a wealth of ref, coaching and skating experience both from UK and International roller derby that can now be shared with all UKRDA members.”
Travis recently refereed at the first roller derby world cup in Toronto, and although the UKRDA encourages all women’s leagues in the UK to join WFTDA, he believes UK leagues also need their own official body. “Although WFTDA is driving the sport internationally, there are a lot of UK leagues that aren’t ready to become WFTDA apprentices yet, but still need the guidance of a national governing body to develop.”
“I hope to help progress the standard of officiating within the UKRDA, along with trying to assist on the other issues and challenges facing the organisation.”