Manchester Roller Derby burst into March and our sixth year of action with a double header featuring both co-ed teams. Furious Engine put up a consistent challenge for local rivals the Wirral’s Savage Animals‘ strong defence and nippy jammers, but despite fighting until the final whistle they didn’t manage to topple them, finishing Wirral 256 – 124 MRD
The All-Stars managed to keep hold of their undefeated title, despite a few early upsets that seemed to put Birmingham’s Crash Central in position to take the win. A nail biting game saw MRD take the victory by just 27 points, scores were MRD 168 – 141 Birmingham
Still aching, the Furies flew over to Belfast a week later to take on their B-team – the teams were closely ranked and nobody could call the outcome, but the Furies, focussed on ending a recent losing streak, came off the plane and on to the track with some serious aggression, taking a comfortable win - MRD 254 – 108 Belfast
The last weekend of March saw Chaos Engine heading down to Portsmouth. They’d previously warmed up in a closed game against Super Smash Brollers B-Team but the scores from that one didn’t leave the room. With men’s teams still in the minority the boys have had trouble finding the right match up for them in the past, but they found one in Portsmouth’s Scurvy Dogs. A tight game that saw Chaos maintaining the lead by just a few points for the duration ended disappointingly for the boys as Portsmouth pulled away in the final few minutes - MRD 189 – 170 Portsmouth
At the same time up North the CheckerBroads came away with mixed feelings after their Leeds British Champs match up. Leeds tower above them in the rankings, but Manchester came out strong and the first half was a lead changing frenzy. By the time the final whistle went Leeds had tightened up their defence and came out victorious with scores at MRD 125 – 192 Leeds. The smaller than predicted differential means a win for the Broads in the rankings, but the second loss in a row leaves them in the relegation zone in British Champs Tier 2 North.
Missed out? The CheckerBroads and Chaos Engine will be playing at our next home game on April 11th, and New Wheeled Order play away in Nottingham on April 18th. Furies fans will have to wait until May to catch them in action.
Photography by Mike Gatiss, Michael Barbour & Andy Sainter.