Updated 12/05/2011 10:25 PM
U.S. brings CNY "Thunder" to Roller Derby World Cup
Hundreds of athletes from across the globe descend on Toronto for the very first Roller Derby World Cup. Tamara Lindstrom caught up with one team USA skater who got her start in Central New York.
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CANADA -- Three days. Thirteen countries. Two-hundred-sixty skaters colliding on the track at the very first Roller Derby World Cup.
"We've got countries coming from halfway across the world," said event coordinator Amie "Speedin Hawking" Sergas. "Australia, New Zealand, Brazil, Argentina."
"Finland, Germany, Brazil. It's been really cool seeing all these countries come together," said Team Canada skater Bonnie "Soul Rekker" Bray.
Leading the way for Team USA is Nicole "Bonnie Thunders" Williams.
"My life is consumed by roller derby," William said.
The skating superstar hails from Central New York.
"There's a little sports hall of fame in Rome, so maybe someday I'll be a part of that," Williams joked.
She got her skating start with the Syracuse University synchronized figure skating team.
"And when I moved to New York, I wanted to keep skating and roller derby was kind of this perfect intersection between skating because I loved to skate, but also contact sport," said Williams.
Williams has skated with the Gotham Girls Roller Derby since 2006 and now runs her own store, Five Stride Skate Shop, in Brooklyn.
She and 19 other athletes from across country traveled to Toronto to show America's skating prowess.
"We had, unfortunately, not that much preparation for this tournament," Williams said.
Team USA took the track with just two practices under their wheels.
"I think it's always challenging when you play with new people," Williams said. "When somebody knocks someone out of bounds and you do one thing expecting them to follow you and then they don't do what you expect."
Three days of cut-throat brackets led to a final matchup between the two North American teams and the U.S. and Canada fought it out to take home the first ever roller derby world cup. Team USA dominated the pack, winning the final round 336 to 33.
"It feels pretty incredible to be able to say you're the first world champion of roller derby," Williams said. "It's definitely an amazing feeling."
And maybe one stride closer to that hometown Hall of Fame. But for now, she said, it's time to try something new - a week off.