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Published on August 24th, 2011 | by DerbyLife

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Inside World Cup 2011: Team Argentina

Head Coach Crazy Legs of Team Argentina answers our questions about developing her country’s first national roller derby team for the 2011 Blood And Thunder World Cup.

DL: What was it like putting together your country’s first team?

CL: Last December we started thinking about being part of the World Cup, keeping in mind the talented Argentinean players residing in the US, and the passion for Roller Derby in our country opened a possibility. Going to Toronto, which is not close in proximity to Argentina (at all), and knowing the challenges off skates we’re going to face, from Visas to planes, hotels, food… and I can keep counting… but not being part of the first Roller Derby World Cup was not an option.

DL: What are you doing to prepare the team for World Cup?

CL: A couple of weeks ago the Coach went to Argentina to meet the players, we had an intensive boot camp that made us stronger. As for the players from other leagues, we follow their home teams and watched their videos.

The players that reside in Argentina train every week and it’s our goal to train with the entire team before Toronto. Meanwhile, mental encouragement, sugar and spice, tough training on and off skates is part of our routine.

DL: What kind of challenges are you experiencing? (Fundraising, equipment, practice, etc.)

CL: We are working hard to try to support the team costs, it’s going to be the biggest challenge, we need to cover equipment, which is hard to get in this part of the world, shipping is a very big issue, from skates to toe stops, safety gear, and all that a roller girl needs, uniforms… I’m pretty sure all the teams from overseas are struggling with the plane tickets, visas and others…

The skaters are working very hard with different events to afford part/all of the expenses.

DL: What are the benefits or great experiences you are having from creating a World Cup team?

CL: I think the answer is in the question, creating a World Cup Team is an amazing experience overall – overwhelming, fun, hard, challenging but rewarding, and being part of this journey is something we are going to take pride for the rest of our lives.

We are not paid professional athletes, we all have lives, jobs, family, problems, leagues, practices and on top of that we give to this sport so much energy. Being able to hang in here, knowing that you are as much into Roller Derby as your teammate, is rewarding. Representing the colors of our country and playing the sport we love is an unique experience.

DL: How are locals responding to a first national team?

CL: Sports are popular in Argentina – soccer, tennis, basketball, rugby, just to name a few – and it’s a challenge to tell people that there are no balls in derby, but for being a brand new sport, we have lots of support and curiosity from the Argentineans.

DL: What would help you most right now?

CL: At this time we are trying to get sponsors. The costs are very high, from the plane tickets to the stay, the food, transportation, uniforms, equipment. As we mentioned before it is very expensive to get good (even good enough) equipment shipped to Argentina. Not impossible, but very expensive.

Moral support is also welcome since the more pumped we get, the closer Toronto seems to be.

DL: How do you expect to perform in the World Cup?

CL: We want to be considered a team that will keep on fighting and never give up. We’ll show our passion by leaving everything at the track. This is the biggest moment in our Roller Derby carreer, and we are taking it with a smile on our face, a teammate next to us and all the love for Roller Derby.

DL: What are your hopes for your team?

CL: We want a team united, and to be able to take on the challenge as a one solid unit. We are a group of strong Argentinean women, empowered by the skates, and we want to share some of that.

DL: What does this first World Cup mean to you or your team for the future of roller derby in your country?

CL: We are ambassadors of Roller Derby, first steps, I mean strides, on a path that will open up and show the sport to every inch of the world. We want to come back to our country and recruit more roller girls. We would like support from the government, so maybe we could have a place to skate. We want more people to understand the game. We love the possibility of meeting and learning from the best players in the world and bring all that back and sharing it, not only with the Argentinean community, but all Latin America.

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