Jobbers play County Fair

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— A jobber is a professional wrestler still working the circuits, someone who hasn't made a name for him- or herself yet.

Tommy Straightlace Beuchet is one of the jobbers who performed at the Moffat County Fairgrounds on Friday night for Craig's first pro-wrestling show.

He grew up watching Macho Man Randy Savage and Ricky Steamboat, and now is grateful for the chance to wrestle in front of any crowd that will have him.

He wrestles in Denver and Commerce City mostly, he said, and one time wrestled in front of 1,800 people at the Western Stock Show Complex in Denver.

When he doesn't have a show to perform, he works as a meat-cutter at a Safeway in Denver, but wrestling is his goal.

"It's great. It takes a certain kind of person," Beuchet said. "You have to have a good work ethic, and a lot of heart. If you have those, and you love watching it, then go for it."

On Friday night, Beuchet worked for Steve Gatorwolf, a pro-wrestler for 28 years who worked with World Wrestling Entertainment from 1984 to 1991, who organized and promoted the show.

In the middle of the dirt showground, he gave the gathered crowd as many matches as the weather allowed.

"All us oldtimers never walk away from this," he said. "It's in our blood. We'll get calls from some of the old guys just to get a tour together. Don't expect to make big money, but if you make enough to pay for rooms and food, then that's enough."

Steve is soft-spoken for such a large guy. He says he's about 6'1" and more than 250 pounds.

His jean cutoff shorts and Hawaiian shirt suggest he doesn't take himself too seriously.

"Before the WWE thing, I was just ham-and-egging it independently like these guys tonight," he said. "The business has its good and bad. It's terrible for a family and bad on your body. But I never had to pay for a ticket to Japan or London or wherever else in the world."

While the "rookies from Denver," as Gatorwolf called them, performed in the ring, Gatorwolf watched, judging every suplex, critiquing every ploy to work the crowd.

"You could be the greatest athlete in the world and never make it as a wrestler," Gatorwolf said. "You have to be able to do the moves without killing yourself or someone else. You have to work the crowd."

Promoters call Gatorwolf from time to time to recruit talent, he said. He works with a lot of talent out of special training schools in Denver, Salt Lake City and Las Vegas.

"Everybody deserves a chance," he said. "I was given an opportunity, and I should give other people opportunities. Now, I'm not calling this business fair or anything."

From Craig, Gatorwolf plans to travel through Wyoming, promoting mixed martial arts cage fighting. Friday night's wrestlers are not joining him, but going back to their homes and day jobs.

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