08-12-73 Kingston Daily Freeman
TWENTY THE SUNDAY FREEMAN, KINGSTON, N. Y., AUGUST 12. 1973 Itigli! Itila Dietz Stadium Appearance Proud \ -c!)S)ic Keeps On Rollin’ DERMI E THOMPSON of the New York Chief«, unpacks gear at her motel room here in preparation for Monday night*.« roller derby match against the Red Devil«. (Freeman photo by Haines* Bv STEVE KANE Debbie Thompson i s a lithsn kmd you would expect to find o beach or maybe* in the You will hr* able tr » find her dium tomorrow night. and if th ini enough, (he II also be wear in of the New York Chief The telephone rang Gene "M a former professional t basketball travelling public relati ong man Dtrfcv, answered it am i relayed "Debbie’s putting < on her fa **Sht*H be ntd) In jus I a minute From our limited, long ago i Roller Derby skaters mean any improvem -n Is ranging ween mask *o a fresh coat of lat turned out needed litt le improvi * I like the people. tl he excite)* like the travel." she answered, plain the incongruity f: losrd by h profession Rut what about th*» game? Tf IGSTG und. tl the con min lat to e t. tl dr ve b( are ■one w no icr own doltnce? rolled up *<1 across hey went »rid right )rn.** AH etn. It’» o play a is a not- who "ala friend the Bay >r league «d oval. i on ong the four m.Ilion people the Derby lists a« regular fans, the game goes something like this: Ten players, five from each team, «tart skating around an oval track To «core points, the faster, usually smaller skaters race around the track and try to lap members of the other team within a certain time period. The players they try to pass are permitted to prevent such an occuranee by whatever means they deem necessary. The rules do state, however, that lethal weapons are not permitted. It's »tind of a combination of hockey, wrestling and the Friday night fights, and the fans love It.. It started in Chicago in 1935," said Moyers "Now we have a syndicated television market of 145 stations, and our Neilson rating savs our audience is between 18 and 27 million" There are sis teams in the Roller Derby circuit Besides the Chiefs and Bombers, Chicago has its Pioneers. Atlanta has its Eagles, the Mid West has its Central Jolters. and .it Diet»., the Chiefs will meet the Northwest Red Devils. Though there are standings and cham- pionshins, no one seems quite sure what they are at any given moment. But it doesn't matter. The game's the thing. "I love the game,” oaid Debbie. "I get to play probably a little more than a half each gome My biggest thrill was when I scored my first grand slam in the Nassau Coliseum." But does the blue collar fan image feel like a Dutdown? Can you compare the role of Roller Derby Queen to that of a Billie Jean King or a Chris Evert? "That low class thing doesn't bother me I do n.y thing, and I let other people do their's," Debbie said. Right now Debbie’s thing is over 200 games and 70.000 miles in ten and a half months a year. It's one night stands in big towns and whistle stops and ten fan mail letters a day. She hones someday it will be a Colorado ranch. "That's what I’m saving up for." On the way out we shot her a final question; Are you a liberationist? "No. I like to have doors opened for me. I like to be made to feel like a woman." We left. We were in enough trouble already.