Meet one of the poster girls for our Summer Shovin’ bout, Tina Hilts! If you haven’t seen the posters, check out our facebook event to see Tina rocking it as Rizzo.
This 28 year-old grew up in Rocanville and has been with Gapland since the beginning. Lucky for us, she happens to be sisters with the two founding members (Nixon Broozes and Knuckle Bones). She decided she might as well give derby a try, since she looks up to both sisters and they have such a passion for it. After trying it once, she was hooked.
T’s derby name was settled on after quite a process. An in-law came up with the idea of ‘Tenacious T’, playing off her never-ending grit and determination while playing. Sadly, this name had already been taken when she checked on the world database. Nixon Broozes then came up with the idea of using her real name to change up the spelling. Voila, TINAshus T was born. Teammate Achey Breaky Bones explains, “Her name describes her to a tee. She is cool, calm, and never gives up. You can always count on her.” Her derby number, 3, has always been her go-to number in sports (her birthday is on October 3rd).
Tina currently lives on an acreage between St. Lazare and McAuley with her boyfriend. She joins Farm Fatale in making up the tiny percentage of Manitobans on the Gapland Rollers. T works in safety administration, an interesting line of work in which no two days are ever the same.
For the 2013 season, TINAshus wants to push her skills to new levels. Instead of getting frustrated with tricky skills, such as evasive transitions and backwards skating, she is going to ask her teammates for assistance. We expect nothing less than this on-going persistence that she has helped to spread throughout the entire league. Tina’s favorite position to play is blocker #4. She is responsible for covering the entire track surface and gets the first chance at the opposing team’s jammer. “It’s a very rewarding position when things work out as you hoped they would,” she says. Off the track, she wants to watch more derby to better understand the new rule set that was introduced this year, as well as the increasingly important strategies of the game.
The highlight of her derby career so far, came along in the 2012 season. For the final two bouts, she was voted by the team to represent us as captain. T explains that, “it was a huge honor and very rewarding to know that the team as a whole had that much respect for me and trusted me to lead them.” The last home bout really sticks out in her mind as a great moment. The Unaccompanied Miners played ‘Rock You Like a Hurricane’ as they announced the Gapland players. “When it was my turn and I stepped onto the track, the goosebumps and emotions I felt were like none other,” she states. “At that moment, with the crowd cheering and the smiles on my teammates’ faces, I had never been so proud to be with the Gapland Rollers. I thought to myself that this is my team no matter what and I am going to lead them the best I can.” Lead us she did, right to victory. TINAshus is a pillar of the Gapland league in many facets including leadership, skill, and attitude. “T is an absolute joy to coach,” says Farm Fatale. “I have never had someone respond so positively to criticism and instantly turn it around and use it. Whatever position I ask her to fill, I have never doubted her ability or leadership. She is one of the reasons I tried derby in the first place! Did I mention as an added bonus she is HILARIOUS?” Fellow Gaplander, Ms. CheeVS Maehem, also shares praise for Tina. “She went out of her way to make me feel welcome when I started derby. She has the most amazingly positive attitude and we all look to her for guidance. She is one of my favorite ladies on our team and I am proud to call her a friend.” We will be sure to pass along any character flaws, just as soon as we can find any!
Tina supports Gapland’s motto that there is a place in roller derby for everyone. She wants everyone to try derby! “You never know unless you try.” It does not matter what walk of life you are from, your interests, profession, or size…there is a place for you. She wholeheartedly believes that derby is the greatest sport she has ever played. She explains that, “you also gain a derby family and lifelong friendships.”
Be sure to check out TINAshus T tomorrow night at our home bout, Summer Shovin’! If you are over 19, stick around for the cabaret after. You will be sure to see T rocking out to her ultimate favorite: Pitbull.