I was a little surprised when I heard. After all, we’re all very aware of the attention that WWE pays to women’s wrestling (ie a cursory glance every couple of weeks or so): why would a technically brilliant wrestler, revered the world over, want to move there?
And then you think about it. No matter how depressing the women’s division may be, the WWE is still the biggest professional wrestling stage. Of course Del Rey wants to work there.
“I’m just trying to do press and let it be known I’m interested,” she says. She’s still in touch with her old friends and colleagues Claudio Castagnoli and Bryan Danielson, both doing well there at the moment, so she’d surely be welcomed with open arms there if the powers-that-be made the wise decision to sign her up.
She’s blogged recently about her training diet, and some recent tweaks to it are down to her new dream. “I always trained for performance,” she says. “A lot of body-weight type exercises and explosive movements – and this functional type training bulks you up. With me wanting to be in the WWE I needed to train different so I would have more of a ‘look’. I like doing different things in the gym: the hard work has always been there, it’s just different now – slower movements, lighter weights, that sort of thing.”
Del Rey says she’s always liked training – right from day one, even though she found it tough. “On the first day, we were given a speech,” she recalls, “and they said people don’t make it because they quit. I never thought of quitting and knew it would be hard, so it was just a thing that you put your head down and did it the best you could.”
That discipline has clearly served her well; she’s reminisced before about the sheer number of matches she’s had so far in her career, and she’s still only 31. Does she get any time off to pursue other interests? “I have no other interests,” she admits. “I enjoy training but ultimately I do that for wrestling.”
In 2010, Del Rey was on the bill at a few TNA house shows, but nothing ever came of that. “The critique was I need more of what the Beautiful People have [Velvet Sky and Angelina Love],” she says. “I thought it was a little narrow minded of them not to see my talents and therefore have no interest in working for them.”
What does that mean, I ask – does it mean that you need to physically look more like them, or need cosmetic surgery? “It was never elaborated on. It can be taken many different ways and it’s not a knock on them because I think both girls are great at what they do.”
And what about the rest of the female talent on the scene? Is anyone coming through who’s likely to prove a pretender to Del Rey’s throne? “Pretenders or contenders?” she asks. “I see all other females not as pretenders, but a threat.”
It doesn’t look like we’ll get to see Del Rey in action over here in the UK or Europe this year, although she is still available for bookings (promoters – sort it out, please). In the meantime, get your Sara Del Rey fix with some of her awesome merchandise, and follow her on Twitter @thesaradelrey.
Photo credit: Gilda