From the vault The Wrestlers
You only need to have a look on the news stands whilst buying your copy of Lawless to see how many bike mags from both here and overseas that our quality magazine is up against! So, contributors and editors are always looking for ways to make their work and their magazine to stand out. I thought I might give you ‘the reader’ a look into one of my attempts that didn’t quite come off but hopefully makes for a good story.
The tale begins with two bikes I was to feature for the magazine. The First was John Nuttall’s Fat Jap. The Fat Jap was an Metric Pro Streeter John he imported from the States and the second being Brent Sinclair’s Dyna (Docs Dyna).
The shoot I had imagined for the Fat Jap was to take place in a gym, either in or outside a boxing ring with a couple of kick boxers sparring around the bike. So first thing I did was head up to my local martial arts gym to check it out and see if it would be able to help. The Gym is situated on a main road with a large car park, which was packed with people of all ages and sizes doing calisthenics exercises.
Inside the gym was just as busy only with bunch of blokes and shielas throwing and punching each other and at times strangling each other in slow motion.
All the time combatants were talking each other through the movement and double taking each move.
One of the blokes Damien broke from the routine and asked me if he could help at which time I just blurted out what the fuck is this?
In which he replied the AWF (Australian Wrestling Federation).
How fuckin’ cools that I thought!
Almost immediately I asked if they would be interested in a shoot and a bit of exposure and they jumped at it!
But rather than just doing the shoot at the Gym suggested I shot them and the bike at their next show which was to be at Blacktown RSL in Sydneys Western suburbs.
There was to be a large Wrestling card with the main event being a title fight between Japans Nosawa Rongai and Australia’s Powerhouse Theo.
This was to good to be true!
I know had a Jap element and with the edition of Theo and Brent’s Dyna we had the makings of a bike match off also.
Both John and Brent are out going Blokes and were intrigued with my proposal and had no hesitation of taking up the proposal.
On the night I rang AWF president and was told he was running late and to just go straight up to the clubs auditorium and they will help me with anything I needed.
Like many Auditoriums the Blacktown RSL’s is located on the top floor.
When I got to the club I immediately asked about access in which the helpful staff replied we have a lift around the corner and stairs at the rear that go directly to the Auditorium, so I headed straight for the lift.
First look at the lift told me it would be no good!
The glass lift was no bigger than a shoebox and we would have no chance of fitting Brent’s Dyna let alone the 3-meter stretch of the Fat Jap!
So I caught the lift up to the Auditorium to be greeted by a couple of good sorts helping each other limbo up with some stretches on the floor.
Things were looking up
In the distance was a buzz with a cast of what seemed hundreds assembling the full size ring and a couple of blokes rehearsing their moves in the corners.
I caught up with Damien and asked for the best access and he led me to the emergency exit doors which led out to what seemed to be the Mount Everest of all stair cases which led to the rear of the building.
I asked there has to be something else!
Damien said he organize a few blokes to give me a hand.
Looking around and noticing not only the size of these blokes, how many there was.
I thought we should be right!
Next thing I now the phone rings It’s Brent his waiting down stairs and wondering where I was.
By the time I got down stairs John had also rocked up with Te Fat Jap and good mate Roy in tow.
I pointed out our predicaments to the boys and Brent decided to give the lift ago anyhow, to no avail.
So we all took the walk up stairs to survey the stair case to which both the boys took one look and said no way!
With time ticking away and Wrestling patrons gradually making their way to the only other access and there for blocking the main entrance the decision had to be made and fast!
So I told the boys of the generous offer of extra hands if we need them and we decide to look at other alternatives.
The only other alternative was to wheel the bikes through the clubs foyer and carry the bikes up the 20 odd stairs to the first floor or use the Escalator beside the staircase.
After much deliberation the boys decided the show must go on and we decided to preserve our energy for the next two levels two and three of stairs to the Auditorium on the third floor.
Brent went first,
Rather than making the trip up to get help John, Roy Brent and myself decided to give it ago!
All of us boys the other side of forty didn’t now exactly what we had bit off and after struggling with relatively short and light Dyna we had the 3m 300arse end Fat Jap to jug up which presented another problem the length of the bike meant it spanned far more stairs and bottomed out on the harsh metal stairs of the escalator.
The Dyna also bottomed out on the last of the steps, which meant the rear had to be lifted on the last steps but in the case of the Fat Jap the rear had to be held in the air the entire trip up the escalator.
By the time we got both the bikes onto the first level I found it in my wisdom (looking at the old boys!) to ask for some help.
With the Wrestlers now in frenzy before the show I asked for the extra hands and the yell went out for help and two or three featherweights stood up to the challenge.
At this time I thought anything will do but our hero’s Brent, John and Roy weren’t of the same idea.
As I lead the boys down the stairs to the stranded bike’s I could see the confused look on the bikers faces as the boys tilted their tomato red faces to look around our crew looking for the burly wrestlers they had seen up stairs.
Everyone was given a position and a place to lift the bike as not to damage the bike.
With great effort we made the next twenty steps to the landing but this time we took the Fat Jap first because if the Fat Jap wasn’t going to make the left turn from the landing to the next row of stairs we were going to abort.
By the time we got to the landing we new we were in trouble and send a scout to recruit some more muscle.
Finally the troops arrived and we got both bikes up to the Auditorium but by this time it was show time and there was very little time for photo’s but I was able to roll off a couple before proceedings.
First thing first it was a couple of beers before any of us even wanted to mention how we were going to get the bikes out.
The bikes in place added to the spectacle for the wrestling fans many coming over for photo’s and asking the boys questions.
Question time was cut short with the dimming of the lights and the MC’s introduction.
We didn’t really know what to make of the character’s at first grown men in leotards and gothic dress but as the show went on all four of us found ourselves having a laugh and taking the piss but we all were in aw of not only the gymnastics, flips and throws but some of the physical contact with some of the slaps and throws to the canvas echoing through the auditorium and leaving welts on the bodies of the wrestlers.
When many think of Wrestling like me of grown men pouncing around in their undie’s grabbing each other and getting hot and sweaty.
Whilst there’s a lot of that, there are plenty of laughs and an added bonus was the fairer sex competitors who were also getting down and dirty and physical.
Babes dress in lingerie and tights rolling around, bending and stretching like elastic bands, slapping and punching each other.
Now tell me that aint worth admission?
Wrestlers Chantelle Bathory , Pink look-alike Bombshell Bo and the Burlesque Alison Wonderland wet at it both in and out of the ring playing up to the revved up crowd.
Alison describes her wrestling style as Seductive and rule breaking, while Chantel’s style is quote “Dazed and Crazed, rule breaking biting and scratching.
The trip down wasn’t to be as bad as our trip up with many of the wrestlers stepping up to the task after the show!
Never a fan of Wrestling I’m now a convert of sorts and recommend to anyone if the AWF is in town near you do your-self a favor!
There was no Wrestlers or motorcycles harm during this story.
The AWF School of pro wrestling and training facility is located in Swettenham Rd St Andrews in Sydneys South west.
A special thanks goes to Bike owners Brent and John with particular mention to the good people of Blacktown RSL.