Hard Knox Rollergirls

The Hard Knox Rollergirls are Knoxville's first competitive roller derby team. Come see what all the fuss is about.

January 2014 Featured Skater: Sadie Hellcat

Sadie Hellcat is well known for her big smile, hard hits, and naughty behavior, but what is the driving force behind all that ferocity? Why does she arm-wrestle opposing skaters at after parties? Who is her celebrity doppelganger? And what is up with that big hunk of cat fur??? Read on to find out!

Photo by Mark Gunnar Quist

Photo by Mark Gunnar Quist

How long have you been involved with derby? What leagues have you skated for? ?

I have been playing derby 6 years now. Hard Knox is my second league. I got my start (and passion) in derby with the Charlotte Rollergirls. They taught me SO much about the sport and the finer points of jammer kills.

Did you know how to skate before derby? ?

I have to admit, I did speed skate when I was in elementary and middle school. My mother (derby name: Peeder Pants) won awards for figure skating in her day, and I was lucky enough to acquire her talents as a skater. I spent many a Saturday at the skating rink (best babysitter in town) while my parents ran their boat shop in South Florida.

What have you learned about yourself since you started skating? ?

What have I learned about myself since I started skating?? Excellent question! I would have to say, I am the only one in control of my life! I can speed it up, slow it down, knock someone over with one fell swoop, or power to chariot a jammer by the hem of my short plaid skirt away from an angry pack trying to take her out of bounds in the next turn. I have the power to make or break a relationship with people.  Like one of my best friends Joseph Wilkie used to say at work, “Don’t tell me what to do or I will go home!”?(That and the fact that people think I am Lindsay Lohan’s not so skinny twin sister! Derby and “Bad Behavior” are synonymous with each other!)

Photo by Rebecca Sword

Photo by Rebecca Sword

Is there a skill that you find particularly challenging or are working hard on these days?

I do find jamming to be rather challenging! Its funny, one night I was skating against Big Ugly Bang, and she blocked me out of bounds fairly easy. She almost scolded me for not being a better jammer. It’s cute she thinks I would be more “sturdy” on the track. I do admire the jammers!  They take the hits and keep pushing! I will work on being more sturdy and not giggle when someone blocks me out of bounds while I am jamming.

Did you play sports as a kid? Do you play any other sport now?

I did play sports as a kid. I loved softball and racquetball. I was a hyper chunky monkey in elementary school. My parents did not want me to develop unhealthy habits or a sedentary lifestyle. I was lucky enough to ride my bike to school and being an only child, I wanted to do something to have friends and stay active. Sports! That was the answer!  I learned I had a pretty good little talent to be a pretty awesome catcher in softball.  I guess being short made me more compact to not get hit with the bat swinging super close to my head! Maybe it was just that I did not care and wanted to just be a part of the action… Our team won championships a couple of times and I was hooked! I love competition!  I like mountain biking, and I am super HOOKED ON DERBY! There is no other sport like it and never will be! Derby is a bad expensive drug to me! Try to make me go to rehab? I say no no no!

What team have you most enjoyed playing against?

OMG! That is such a difficult question! All the teams have been so great in one way or fashion. I would have to say that one of my favorite derby teams would have to be the Low Country Highrollers from Charleston, S.C. Those girls are just nuts and fun! The Charlotte Rollergirls played them a lot. Playing with Hard Knox? My favorite, most aggressive game was against Cincinnati Rollergirls! It was nerve racking to know how great this team was ranked and that Sadistic Sadie (long time derby crush of A-list skaters to meet) was bench coaching the opposing team! I was giddy with excitement knowing that she was in our house critiquing our every johnny-crash and jammer kill we delivered to her skaters. I was pretty much beside myself. I was in the penalty box closest to their bench, and I found myself yelling during a quiet moment, “Sadistic Sadie! I love you!!!!!!”  I am sure at that moment she wanted to punch me, or at least set my skates on fire, but for one shining moment, I got to check one goal off of my life list! Plus? I got MVP blocker for that bout! Winning!

What do your family and friends think about you being a roller girl?

My friends and family are not really surprised that I am a roller girl (especially at my age). They just think its par for the course. I am like Peter Pan. I never really “grow up;” I will always keep playing and kicking as much ass as possible. I have great genetics. My father is 60 something and races suped up lawn mowers that do about 50 miles an hour. My family loves to race and keep trucking. Life goes by fast; you need to be able to keep up! That’s also kind of how I got my derby number of “2bad.” Someone would be mean to me and he would just say, “Hey! TOO BAD! Go get ‘em!”

Photo by David Smith

Photo by David Smith

You are well known as one of the friendliest faces of HKRG. What motivates you to stay so positive?

WOW! Thanks! I really appreciate that! I just express the same gratitude expressed to me when I first joined up with this league. Everyone was very welcoming and hospitable. This league has so much raw talent; I was a pretty smitten kitten with these ladies. I stay positive by viewing derby as a sport that is a privilege to play. This sport is not for the faint of heart, and it is expensive. Plus, I learned some humbleness from the Charlotte Roller Girls. I was just going to slide into HKRG, learn the dynamics, hang out, and let the derby unfold. I was just excited to be here and skate with these folks. To me, derby is better than therapy! I love the outlet derby provides. Controlled Chaos!

I hear you are pretty good at arm wrestling. Tell me more.

HAHA! Yeah! I would have to agree, I am pretty decent at arm wrestling. Me and my “lunch lady arms.” I like to collect T-shirts from other teams. My dad loved to arm wrestle so I started doing this at ECDX and after parties. The conditions are as such: whoever wins gets the shirt off the not-so-winner’s back! I have quite the collection, and many a girl had to go home in their sports bra. The shirts that were too small for me? I gave them to my skinny friends.  Let me tell you once again, who’s bad?????

When Tempest suggested you as this month’s featured skater, she said she thought you might have some crazy stories. Care to share one?

Oh Lord! I have so many crazy stories! Some could get me arrested, and some could incriminate others! I guess one tame one would be this great hunk of cat fur from my awesome cat Sadie. This fur was large enough to make a beard for a man’s face or scare my friends at work with it! One time, we had a guest announcer in Charlotte (Derby Royalty) “Dump Truck,” I put the cat fur on him, and he about lost his mind. Once he figured out it was not going to bite him or give him crabs, he wore it proudly like a Santa Beard! What an epic time! I will always treasure how much joy this cat fur brings to those it touches! MEOW!

Do you have a New Years Resolution?

My New Years Resolution??? Keep a positive attitude by not letting anyone rain on my parade or bring me down, and always do my very best to keep encouraging others at being their best. Martin Luther King said it best, “The only time you look down on someone is to help them up.” Cheers to a successful New Year to all!

Who would you like to see as next month’s Featured Skater?

I would like for Paramaniac to be the next Skater of the Month. I want to know how she got to be Queen of the Cooler!

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