The WFTDA has accepted 28 leagues into its apprentice programme, which now has leagues from 17 countries eagerly working towards WFTDA membership.
Leagues from Ireland, the Netherlands and Australia were accepted into the program, alongside leagues from France, Finland, the United Kingdom, Canada and the USA. One of these leagues is Northern Brisbane Rollers, one of three Australian leagues accepted as apprentices in this round and one of eight currently in the program.
Northern Brisbane spokesperson Lil Gee Unit says joining the WFTDA will benefit not only their league, but roller derby across Australia as skaters and officials raise their level of gameplay and understanding of the rules.
â€œWe are looking forward to developing the sport in Australia and contributing to putting Australia on the map in the international roller derby scene. We are keen to develop our officials, skaters and members based on access to information and support via the global WFTDA network. We want to learn as much as possible from our membership to improve the sport.
â€œOur long term goal is to play at an international WFTDA tournament, and we would like to be involved with the first ever Australian sanctioned tournament.â€
WFTDAâ€™s Growing Global Reach
The 28 new apprentice leagues are from nine different countries all over the world. Europe is well represented, with nine leagues taking up the challenge. Three leagues each from Australia and Canada join the fold, as do 13 from around the USA. Ireland and the Netherlands are now represented in the programme for the first time.
There are 111 leagues currently in the apprentice program and the new crop of apprentices join leagues from Argentina, Belgium, Brazil, Denmark, Japan, New Zealand, Puerto Rico and Sweden.
Leagues from 13 countries make up the WFTDA membership, but of the 212 current member leagues, 180 (84.9%) are from the USA. The rest is made up of 11 UK leagues (5.1%), Canada (3.3%) and Others (6.6% combined).
List of New Apprentice Leagues
Albany All-Stars of Albany, New York, USA
Amsterdam Derby Dames of Amsterdam, Netherlands
Bangor Roller Derby of Bangor, Maine, USA
Central Arkansas Roller Derby of North Little Rock, Arkansas, USA
Central Maine Roller Derby of Bangor, Maine, USA
Dub City Derby Girls of Boca Raton, Florida, USA
Dublin Roller Derby of Dublin, Ireland
Dupage Derby Dames of Chicago, Illinois, USA
Eerie Rollergirls of Erie, Pennsylvania, USA
Heart of Appalachia Roller Derby, Charleston, West Virginia, USA
Herault Derby Girlz of Le Cres, France
Kallio Rolling Rainbow of Helsinki, Finland
Nantes Derby Girls of Nantes, France
Newcastle Roller Girls of Newcastle, England, UK
Northern Brisbane Rollers of Brisbane, Australia
Northside Rollers of Melbourne, Australia
Pensacola Roller Gurlz of Pensacola, Florida, USA
Perth Roller Derby of Perth, Australia
Port City Roller Derby of Oswego, New York, USA
Resurrection Rollergirls of Rohnert Park, California, USA
rocKArollers – Roller Derby Karlsruhe of Karlsruhe, Germany
Rockin City Rollergirls of Round Rock, Texas, USA
Roller Derby Bordeaux of Bordeaux, France
Royal City Roller Girls of Breslau, Ontario, Canada
Seaside Siren Roller Girls of Essex, England, UK
St. Albert Heavenly Rollers of St. Albert, Alberta, Canada
Team United Roller Derby of Urbandale, Iowa, USA
Winnipeg Roller Derby League of Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada