Patrick ‘Crazy P’ Thomas got into character in Glanford Park on Oct. 15 where he spent years he spent playing for the Saanich Hornets. (Devon Bidal/News Staff)

Patrick ‘Crazy P’ Thomas got into character in Glanford Park on Oct. 15 where he spent years he spent playing for the Saanich Hornets. (Devon Bidal/News Staff)

B.C. Lions, Canucks hype-man sidelined as sports move to fan-free play amid pandemic

Crazy P misses seeing fellow fans who’ve become family, pumping up players

The COVID-19 pandemic has sidelined well-known B.C. Lions hype-man Patrick ‘Crazy P’ Thomas as professional sports leagues moved to fan-free play.

In September 2019, Thomas, 51, celebrated 15 years as the B.C. Lions superfan and told Black Press Media his goal was to eventually cheer at a Canucks game. He didn’t have to wait long because shortly after, he was called in for an interview with the team’s staff.

“They needed someone to rile up the crowd and someone referred me” Thomas explained.

As a lifelong Canucks fan, cheering at Rogers Arena in front of NHL teams was “a dream come true” for Thomas. The first few games were fantastic, he said, adding that he was able to get the arena “roaring” which in turn got the team fired up.

READ ALSO: B.C. Lions hype-man marks 15 years of cheers

Like the players, Crazy P feeds off the crowd as he hops around, waving his arms and bellowing chants that carry across the stadium. He attributes much of his cheering persona to his former Saanich Hornets football coach, Roy Vollinger, who died in June at 78.

Thomas played for the Hornets in Glanford Park some 44 years ago under Vollinger’s tutelage. The coach’s commanding presence, booming voice and overflowing energy inspired teamwork and passion among the young athletes, said Thomas.

“Crazy P was born here in Glanford Park,” Thomas said, gesturing around the field now used for soccer. He would rush the field after a game, cheering and shouting chants, not unlike those he uses now to rile the crowds at Lions and Canucks games.

READ ALSO: Legendary Greater Victoria football coach Roy Vollinger dies at 78

Cheering for hockey is different from cheering for football, but he quickly hit his stride and cheered at 35 Canucks games – while also cheering at B.C. Lions games, which required a lot of energy drinks and Tylenol – before the season was cut short by the pandemic.

He’s hopeful that things will return to normal soon so fans can get back to stadiums – with cleaner hands and social distancing.

“I miss the people most. We need that connection as humans,” Thomas said, noting that this would have been his 16th season with the B.C. Lions and he’s known some fellow fans since the beginning.

READ ALSO: Bubble fatigue cited as mental challenge during NHL playoffs

“We’re family and that’s the part that really hurts,” he said while scrolling through photos of himself posing with other fans in team gear.

Thomas hopes there will be some opportunity for Crazy P to return this season.

“I’m so looking forward to next year. This is my calling.”

In the meantime, Thomas is looking for other opportunities to bring out the Crazy P persona and invites anyone running pandemic-friendly sporting events to reach out to him via Instagram, @crazyp44.


@devonscarlett
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

devon.bidal@saanichnews.com

BC LionsCanucksSports

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Patrick ‘Crazy P’ Thomas can’t wait to get back to cheering for his teams – including the B.C. Lions, the Canucks and the UBC Thunderbirds. (Devon Bidal/News Staff)

Patrick ‘Crazy P’ Thomas can’t wait to get back to cheering for his teams – including the B.C. Lions, the Canucks and the UBC Thunderbirds. (Devon Bidal/News Staff)

Just Posted

(Black Press Media file photo)
Victoria dine and dash brings $230 fine

Group paid the bill, police locate suspect who violated provincial restrictions, mistreated staff

file
Oak Bay resident bilked $3,300 in puppy scam

Three cases of fraud reported in two days

Sidney’s Star Cinema has temporarily closed as part of efforts to COVID-19. (Black Press Media File).
Sidney’s Star Cinema temporarily goes dark

Closure reflects provincial health order in effect until Dec. 7

Victoria police are asking for help locating Jordan Doddridge who is wanted on a Canada-wide warrant. (Courtesy of Victoria Police Department)
VicPD seek help locating man wanted on Canada-wide warrant

Jordan Doddridge has an extensive criminal history including violent offences

Mandy Farmer, CEO of Accent Inns and Hotel Zed, was given the RBC Canadian Women Entrepreneur Excellence Award on Wednesday evening. (Provided by Deepa Pillay)
Accent Inns, Hotel Zed CEO earns prestigious award

Mandy Farmer wins RBC Canadian Women Entrepreneur Excellence Award

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates B.C.’s COVID-19 situation at the B.C. legislature, Nov. 23, 2020. (B.C. government)
B.C. daily COVID-19 cases hits record 941 on Tuesday

Further restrictions on indoor exercise take effect

(Pixabay.com)
Man, 28, warned by Kootenay police to stop asking people to marry him

A woman initially reported the incident to police before they discovered others had been popped the question

Winston Blackmore (left) and James Oler (right) were sentenced on separate charges of polygamy this week in Cranbrook Supreme Court.
No more charges expected in Bountiful investigation, special prosecutor says

Special prosecutor says mandate has ended following review of evidence from Bountiful investigations

(Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Refuse to follow B.C.’s mask mandate? Face a $230 fine

Masks are now required to be worn by all British Columbians, 12 years and older

Parksville’s French Creek Harbour experienced a diesel spill on Nov. 23 after a barge and fishing vessel collided. (Mandy Moraes photo)
Coast Guard cleans up diesel spill in Parksville’s French Creek Harbour

Barge carrying fuel truck collides with fishing vessel

Stock photo
Senior from Gibsons caught viewing child porn sentenced to 10 months

74-year-old pleaded guilty after police seized 1,500-2,500 images

BC Teachers' Federation President Teri Mooring is asking parents of school-aged children to encourage the wearing of masks when possible in schools. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito)
LETTER: Teachers union encourages culture of mask wearing in B.C. schools

BCTF President Teri Mooring asks parents to talk with children about wearing masks in school

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau speak to the media about the COVID-19 virus outside Rideau Cottage in Ottawa, Friday, Nov. 20, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada’s inability to manufacture vaccines in-house will delay distribution: Trudeau

First doses of COVID-19 vaccine expected in first few months of 2021, prime minister says

(Pixabay)
All dance studios, other indoor group fitness facilities must close amid updated COVID-19 rules

Prior announcement had said everything except spin, HIIT and hot yoga could remain open

Most Read