Steve "Crusher" Rackman - Champion of men,
by Greg Tingle
He was big, he was mean, he was ugly. And the
fans loved him to a point of hating his guts.
A star of the Australian Wrestling scene in the
1970's, he graduated from the performances within
the ring to mainstream cinema to famously succumb
to the lips of Paul Hogan's character in Crocodile
"Crusher" Rackman. A formidable name.
A formidable man and a formidable flat top.
Mention him and many will say, "I know that
name" or "wasn't he Donk in the Crocodile
Dundee movies?" He was. And there's plenty
more in his cupboard of achievements. Wrestler,
Bouncer, Boxer, Entrepreneur, Gymnasium proprietor.
he hasn't done Hamlet and is still awaiting an
invitation to the Oscars, but there are far more
important bouts to win. He's the "Crocodile
Safari Man" of the wrestling business in
Oz. And he wants to put it back where it belongs.
In the public's face.
grew up in England, and travelled to Australia
in his teens to find a new life.
the time "Crusher" arrived on our sandy
beaches he'd cemented his credentials: boxer,
street fighter and bouncer. You don't mess with
natural for the rough and tumble and chaos of
the wrestling ring, Rackman mixed it with the
best of them. And there were no better or bigger
than the French mountain: the late, great Andre
The Giant. To a packed house of 10,000, Rackman
and the man who easily stepped over the top rope,
slugged it out a steel cage no less!
is a consummate gentleman away from the ring,
but get him in a situation, and his politeness
and good-natured humour will step aside for something
a little less congenial. "Donk" is old-school.
But he also understands and collaborates with
modern concepts. Some say he has big mouth, he
can sure as heck back it up, with actions and
a track record of success, that makes his accomplishments
an envy to the many of us non achievers.
asked, "Is wrestling real?" Rackman
firmly states, "It's a lot more real than
a great many people realise. The pain's real,
and so are these scars." He points to a forehead
carved with the wrinkles of time and the trophies
of yesterday. "It's showmanship and an athletic
performance of the highest calibre."
sun and waves of the Gold Coast is home to Rackman
and his family, and he's still involved on the
periphery of Australian professional wrestling.
asked what keeps him busy, he pauses.
is getting ready to cut deals with promotional
films in Sydney, like Mediaman, who
shares Rackman's vision to get Australian wrestling
to where it was two and half decades ago.
documentary needs to be made that does our unique
sport justice", Rackman states.
in the know, understand that professional wrestling
is big and serious business, and the right wrestling
documentary, hooked up with the right wrestling
promotion, is money in the bank.
is a cutthroat business. Dastardly acts are acted
in the ring and in the locker room, where every
wrestler and promoter thinks they are "king
of the hill".
are only a few real "movers and shakers"
in the professional wrestling aka sports entertainment
business. You know them already - McMahon, Hogan
and The Rock, but rest assured, when it comes
to business "down under", the names
Rackman, Milano, Little Wolf, and Tingle are the
ones to watch.
where's pro wrestling "Aussie" style
heading? If Rackman and mates have anything to
do with it, this modern-day, athletic display
of gladiatorial proportions will one again enjoy
the status of a great, golden era of days long
past. Rackman is a determined man. Would you argue
with someone so mean, so ugly and so big? I wouldn't
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