Help Scotland’s star skaters fly the flag!

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HOMEGROWN heroes of the skating track have the chance to swap the west coast of Scotland for the east coast of America – but they need your help to get there.

Glasgow Roller Derby have been handed a golden invite to play in one of the world’s most prestigious events – the Annual East Coast Derby Extravaganza (ECDX) in Pennsylvania.

Roller derby is the fastest growing women’s sport in the world and Scotland’s queens of the track are GRD’s all-star team – the Irn Bruisers.

The ‘Home of the Brave’ is an appropriate destination for these fearless competitors who are known throughout the UK for their skills, stamina, strength and speed.

The Irn Bruisers are one of the top 10 teams in Europe and have won a host of competitions home and away.

They want to take the States by storm this summer by starring in the seventh annual ECDX – one of the world’s biggest and best derby events in the world.

It’s a chance to put Glasgow and Scotland on the map, but they need your support and corporate sponsorship to make the dream a reality.

A spokeswoman said: “GRD are proud and honoured to have been invited by the Philly Roller Girls to take part in the seventh annual East Coast Derby Extravaganza in Pennsylvania, USA, in June.

“The event takes place over three days – with over 20 leagues from the United States, Canada and Britain, all fighting it out on three different tracks in 50 bouts.

“This is an amazing opportunity for us to play some of the biggest derby teams in the world – and we’re fighting fit and ready for it – but we need to get our girls there!”

Roller derby is a full-contact, all-action sport played on an oval track - combining racing, tactics, offence, defence, thrills and spills.

In a bid to raise the necessary money to get a squad over to the States – along with their skating gear – the GRD’s many members and friends are already working on wonderful fundraising ideas.

There will be many events and competitions in the next few months and fans – old and new – are being urged to play their part.

There’s also a chance for local companies, retailers and organisations to get involved as sponsors – with the team offering to promote their brand in Scotland and Stateside.

“This is HUGE for us and an incredible opportunity to play teams at the top of our sport,” said a spokeswoman. “It’s going to take everything we have to get 20 people and a lot of skate stuff across the Atlantic.

“Help us fly the flag for the GRD and we can fly the flag for your firm.

“We would be grateful for any sponsorship – large or small – to help us represent Scotland in the US.

“This is a brilliant chance to help one of Scotland’s leading sports teams and secure invaluable publicity into the bargain.”

If you’re further afield, or unable to attend the fundraising events, and want to donate directly you can visit http://glasgowrollerderby.com/get-in-touch/donate

* Glasgow Roller Girls, as they were known originally, were the first flat-track roller derby league to be established in Scotland, in April 2007.

Since then Glasgow Roller Derby, as they are now known, have sped from strength to strength - playing internationals, securing a top 10 spot in Europe and organising their own tournaments.

* Despite growing in popularity and stature every year, the club – which has around 70 members – remains fiercely proud of its DIY ethic. Everyone involved in the club is a volunteer.

* The GRD B-team – the Maiden Grrders - take on Dundee’s Silvery Tayzers – on March 16 in Dundee.

* On March 30 in Glasgow the GRD’s home teams will play an inter-league tournament. For more information visit www.glasgowrollerderby.com