He is known as "The Flying Gentleman". With a career spanning nearly twenty years, this three time K-1 champion is one of the most well known fighters in the world.. Having recently retired, I caught up with Remy in Istanbul to talk about his past, present and future. In many ways, March 08, 2014, marked the end of an era as Remy announced his final fight would be at Glory 14 in Croatia against Mirko"Cro Cop" Filipovic. True to his reputation as a gentleman and a great sportsman, Remy's exit from the ring was as graceful as his entrance when he defeated the elder Overeem brother, Valentijn in 1995.
SW: Now that "The Flying Gentleman" has landed what are your plans?
RB: Well I have several projects I'm working on, including opening up my second gym. I also am working with several fighters training and there's also doing seminars and other projects. It's not really like a retirement. I will still be very busy.
SW: I know you have your own gym, Bonjasky Academy. Who are you currently working with?
RB: Well, right now, probably my most notable student is Danyo Ilunga. There are some others I am training but Danyo is probably the most well known at this time.
SW: If you weren't training or hadn't become a kickboxer, what other profession do you think you would have pursued?
RB: I probably would have continued my career in banking.
SW: I find it exciting that Glory has revitalized interest in kickboxing in the United States. What are you thoughts on the future of kickboxing, in the States and abroad?
RB: I am very pleased with the organization, its very professional, good shows. I think more interest is definitely showing. It's going to get bigger and bigger. The fights are exciting with lots of knock outs. It's growing.
SW: This is not the first time you have stepped away from kickboxing, I know at one time you were having a problem with one of your eyes. What was the nature of your injury?
RB: It was because I had a detached retina.
SW: After you defeated Mirko in Croatia, there was a weird response in the crowd, what was your take on that?
RB: I don't know. It was a very emotional event, not just for me. It's something that never happened in my career before, but I don't believe they were really booing me, it was about the result. I love the people of Zagreb and they have always shown me a lot of love. I don't know what can you say. I am still very happy that I was able to show my skill and win.
SW: I have always wondered what you were really thinking after your incident with Badr Hari at the 2008 K-1 finals.
RB: *shrugs* Badr. You know he did what he did and as a result the fight had that outcome.
SW: I'm sure you're weren't mad about the prize.
RB: Not at all.
SW: What is something about you, perhaps a little known fact, that your fans might find surprising?
RB: I'm afraid of spiders.
So, it would seem that retirement won't exactly be sipping Pina Coladas on the Riviera for Remy. He already has great plans for the future, including, but not limited to continuing to grow the sport as a trainer and mentor to today's rising stars. We wish Remy the best of luck and look forward to seeing him ringside.
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