TNA invade the UK for the eighth year running with their Maximum Impact Tour which kicks of this Friday in Manchester and culminates in Birmingham on Sunday. The Impact Wrestling roster has been strengthened by the reunion of one of their most successful and popular tag teams of all time; Beer Money!
We caught up with James Storm and Bobby Roode for an exclusive chat ahead of the tour.
“I always look forward to coming back here” says Roode. “This is the eighth year in a row for me and it seems to get better and better every year we come over so I always enjoy coming to the UK and performing in front of the fans.”
The UK is a stronghold for the TNA fanbase and every year the tour receives rave reviews for in-ring quality and audience interaction. “The British fans are just so rowdy from the beginning of the show till the end” notes James Storm. “Dixie always stresses to fans to come to the show because it is family oriented and fan friendly.” Roode points out “The demand is pretty high over here and we seem to get an even bigger reaction each time we come back.”
This year’s tour will be even more special for The ‘IT’ Factor Bobby Roode as he has been handpicked by Kurt Angle as one of his opponents on his farewell tour. He reveals “It’s a huge honour for me, especially at such a historic arena like Wembley, it’s probably going to be a huge highlight for my career as a whole. Pound for pound, Kurt is the greatest professional wrestlers of all time and so to be able to be in the ring with him one more time, especially on his farewell tour, I’m looking forward to it and it should be a special night.”
The pair then reassure us that we can expect to see Beer Money together pretty much every night of the tour in one form or another and gave us some warnings of what we can expect from them. Storm jokes “Well, if you’re sitting close to ringside, you might want to bring a rain jacket or something because we call that the splash zone when me and Bobby are out there. If you don’t mind being covered in beer, having fun and losing your voice by the end of the night then this is the place to be.”
Beer Money attribute much of their success not just to their in ring ability as Roode explains “When it comes to wrestling, it’s not only about being able to compete in the ring and have the fans believe in you but I think it’s about being able to go out there and entertain the people. I think that is something that we did very well and it’s something we look forward to doing.” The team have several spots that get the fans involved and this is one of many reasons why they have been so popular. Storm adds “The Beer Money suplex was just something we just thought would be fun and funny and we didn’t think the fans would really take to it but we just did it enough and it got over.”
Storm finishes by encouraging the British fans to be at their raucous best, saying “The fans who always have the most creative signs, me and Bobby always come to grab them to make sure we get those guys on TV so make sure you bring your signs!”
The MAXIMUM IMPACT 8 Tour will see TNA TV tapings take place in Manchester (Friday January 29), London (Saturday January 30) and Birmingham (Sunday January 31). Tickets can be purchased from www.gigsandtours.com and www.ticketmaster.co.uk