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Traci Brooks: From farm girl to Diving Facebuster
St. Marys native Traci Brooks is quite candid about her profession and 'assets'
By IAN GILLESPIE - London Free Press


Traci Brooks as a SUNShine Girl in May 2008. Photo by Alex Urosevic, Toronto Sun


She grew up on a farm in St. Marys, where she helped her dad with pigs and chickens. And now?

Well, these days Traci Brooks (formerly known as Tracy Brookshaw) is known for her Diving Facebuster.

"I'm sitting on the second rope and I plant the other person's face in the mat," says Traci Brooks, explaining her signature move. "It's hard to describe and I definitely can't do it to you."

(For that, I'm thankful.)

Brooks has returned to her old stomping grounds for a bit of stomping and grappling during Saturday night's TNA Live! wrestling event at the John Labatt Centre.

And though Brooks possesses a physique that could give a passing busload of men a nasty case of whiplash, chatting with the pro wrestler is like chatting with a polite farm girl.

Which begs the question: How did a nice girl like her end up in a job like this?

Turns out that when she was a kid, Brooks watched TV wrestling on Saturday nights with her dad.

"And I got hooked," she says. "I just fell in love with the whole thing."

In 1999, Brooks posed as a Sunshine Girl and stated her dream was to become a pro wrestler. A Toronto trainer noticed, gave her a call and push-started her pro career.

And it's a career about which Brooks is remarkably candid. She readily admits, for instance, that she's an entertainer.

"We're sports entertainment," she says. "Yeah, the outcome is predetermined. We all know that. But what we do in the ring is real. It's not all scripted.

"I got knocked out in the ring the other night (in New York)," she adds. "I kind of walked into a spinning back fist."

Apart from the rough and tumble training, she also acknowledges the value of her, ah, other assets.

"I know sex sells, so I have a lot of fun with it," she says. "But I think the way I do it is kind of classy. I mean, the guys are running around in skimpy little spandex outfits, so why are we (the women) judged any different?"

Brooks admits her family isn't totally thrilled with her occupation.

"(My mom) has called me a few times, crying," she says. "She just wanted a little girl, and I grew up to be the biggest boy she has. . . . And my brothers have a hard time, I think, with the T and A part of TNA."

In the end, though, the former farm girl understands her skills can transport some fans, at least temporarily, to a better place.

"It's an escape from reality," she says. "I met a man the other day, and he was handicapped and he said, 'I want to thank you for coming to wrestle for us and entertain us.'

"And for him to briefly forget that he was in that situation . . . I was in tears," she adds. "That meant the world to me."

RELATED LINKS

  • Traci Brooks story archive

    IF YOU GO

    What: Total Nonstop Action (TNA) Wrestling

    When: Saturday, 8 p.m.

    Where: John Labatt Centre

    Tickets: Available at the box office, visit www.johnlabattcentre.com or call 1-866-455-2849