October 4th 2016
Name – John Wayne Parr
Nickname – The Gunslinger
Record – 93 wins 32 losses with 44 knock outs
Weight – 72.5kg (159 pounds)
Team – Boonchu
How long have you been training ?
I have been training 30 years. Started when I was a small boy. Now I’m lucky to turn a hobby into a career.
How did you get in to Muay Thai ?
There was a martial arts gym near my house and my parents use to let me walk to the gym twice a week to train. From watching van damme and the movie KICKBOXER as a 13 year old, that’s when I decided I wanted to go Thailand and fight Thais.
Tell us about your nickname and how you got it ?
My nickname John Wayne came after I moved to Thailand. Everyone fighter has a fight name. Because my background is a farm boy with horse the Thais thought I sounded like a cowboy, so gave me the name John Wayne.
What was the defining moment for you when you knew you wanted to become a fighter ?
There was no real moment. I knew from the time I could walk I was going to be a fighter at something. Karate, boxing, rock & roll wrestling. Didn’t matter, I was just going to be a fighter.
Were your family and friends supportive when you decided to enter the world of Muay Thai?
Yes. Everyone knew it was my passion and no one has ever said to my face that I’m wasting my time. After my first 6 months in Thailand I came home for a few months for Christmas. My mum told me “ok, might be time to get an apprenticeship now so you have a trade to fall back on incase the fighting thing doesn’t work out”. Even though back then I was lucky to have money for food for the week, I told her I was destined for greatness. Now she tells me “thank goodness you never listened to me”!
What is your current record ?
Muay Thai 125 fights, 93 wins, 44 knock outs.
Boxing 13 fights, 10 wins, 10 knock outs.
What is your favorite strike ?
The one that is landing at the time. I don’t have one, I like to be able to adapt.
Who is your biggest inspiration ?
A gentleman from Holland named Ramon Dekkers. He has passed now, but still a legend to hundreds of thousands of people.
What team do you train with ?
I have my own gym called Boonchu. I Still do Most of the classes as it my business and I want it to succeed.
What does being fighter mean to you ?
Ha ha means I get to punch faces.
What weight do you fight at ?
I am currently fighting at middleweight, or 72.5kg.
what do you think separates you from other fighters ?
Mmm, nothing. On any given day any one can beat everyone.
If you could have one dream fight who would it be against ?
Ha ha someone easy so I can win by knockout 😈.
Who has been your toughest fight to date ?
Yodsanklai. Hardest pusher and kicker I’ve ever faced.
What is your mindset going in to a fight ?
Must win to better my legacy, plus need to win so I can keep asking for good prize money.
Who are you fighting next ?
Fighting Daniel Dawson. It’s one fight each so important I win this decider.
what holes or weaknesses will you look to exploit in your opponent during this fight?
Mmm, just have to wait till I get in there. Before the fight everyone is ready to fight their fight. Not until you have inflicted some damage that you work out what to attack.
What do you want to be remembered for at the end of your career ?
Being the first Australian Muay Thai fighter to make it big on the world stage.
Who has been most influential to you in your career ?
Training hard and never giving up. Some fights I have been cut and lost, but because I never gave up people remember my name. I want to put on entertaining fights every time I cross the ropes.
Who do you feel has had the biggest impact on the sport ?
Ramon Dekkers. He was the first white guy to beat and knock out the Thais. For that he gave the rest of us hope that Thais feel pain like the rest of us.
How would you describe your fighting style ?
Aggressive and exciting. I am a pressure fighter so there is always action.
What drives or motivates you to fight ?
Money. The more I win, the more people want to see me fight, the more prize money to can ask from promoters. As a professional Fighter this is my only income, and I can only fight for a short period in my life. Got to try to make as much as I can before I retire.
What do you think you would be doing if you hadn’t become a fighter ?
Lifting heavy things. Leaning on a shovel. Professional meme maker.
What gets you hyped up for a fight do you have any pre fight rituals that get you ready to step in the ring ?
Every fight makes me excited. I know there is a chance I might get seriously hurt, so that fear is enough to make me want to hurt the other guy first.
your backstage about to walk out your music hits what’s going through your head as you walk to the ring ?
Few big breaths, and once you’re in front of the crowd make sure to enjoy the moment for a few seconds. You have trained for maybe 10 weeks so it’s all come down to this moment. Always nice to appreciate the crowd who have paid money to see you go to battle.
When you’re not training what do you like to do with your free time ?
I enjoy watching UFC. I enjoy the internet and catching up on everything from Muay Thai, Boxing, and MMA . I also like comedy and Netflix is also a good way to relax.
What has been your biggest accomplishment in the sport so far ?
Getting famous is Thailand. Was lucky to fight on the big shows, and famous stadiums, make the tv-radio-news paper. My last fight I won one million baht, and I believe I’m the only westerner to win that much money there.
What advice can you give to young fighters?
Train hard, fight harder. Always try to steal the show. Put on the most exciting fight of the night so everybody is saying your name when they leave the venue.
Where do you see Muay Thai in the next 5-10 years.
No idea. I hope the sport grows bigger and bigger for everybody.
Where do you see yourself in the next 5 years ?
No idea? Hopefully still got the gym, still teaching and travelling the world teaching seminars.
What are your goals within the sport ?
I want to be he next Ramon Dekkers. I want to be the guy to influence everybody to get into Martial Arts. Not for fighting, but for better well-being. Exercise not only the. Key but the mind.
Is there anyone you want to thank or give a shout out to ?
Thank you to Triumph United fight gear, Monster Energy & Boonchu restaurant.