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It’s the most wonderful time of the year for us derby fans.  The Women’s Flat Track Derby Association’s international playoff tournament starts today.

Over the course of the season, teams associated with WFTDA are ranked to determine the top teams.  Teams ranked within the top 60 in the late summer are eligible to participate in the playoffs.  The top 40 teams will compete in the Division 1 playoffs and the next 20 will participate in the Division 2 playoffs.  8 of the qualifying teams in this year’s tournament are from outside of the United States, including teams from Australia, Sweden, and Germany.

There are 6 weekends from now until the end of October where teams will compete.  The winner of each weekend tournament will compete in Championship weekend, which take place November 6-8 in St. Paul, MN.

The locations of the weekend playoff tournaments vary from year to year.  This year there will be some great Division 2 action not too far from us.  The tournament kicks off this weekend in Cleveland, OH.  Our friends in Detroit will be hosting the second weekend of D2 next weekend from Aug. 28-30.  D1 playoffs this year will be hosted in Tucson, Dallas, Jacksonville, and Omaha.

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While the Lansing Derby Vixens are not qualified for playoffs this year (We’re closer than ever as we have recently cracked the top 100 in WFTDA rankings), LDV is still very well represented.  Lansing is very fortunate to boast one of the best officiating crews in WFTDA.  Vixen officials will have been invited to work in Cleveland, Detroit, Dallas, Jacksonville, and Omaha.  Officiating crews for Champs weekend have not yet been announced, but our fingers are crossed that there will be LDV representation there as well.

If you would like to check out some of the playoff action for this tournament season, WFTDA.TV offers passes for online streaming of all of the games for the entire tournament.  Also, for the first time this year, ESPN3 will be streaming games during Champs weekend.  This an exciting step in the evolution of roller derby in the US.

Check out the WFTDA site for everything you might need to know about this year’s tournament or purchase your streaming pass.

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