Tyra Sanchez: Tiara Snatch

Newly crowned the winner of RuPaul’s Drag Race, Tyra Sanchez talks big breasts, Beyoncé, and her dream of becoming America’s next drag avatar.



She certainly didn’t have a shot at Miss Congeniality, but Tyra Sanchez did win season 2 of Logo’s RuPaul’s Drag Race — an upset that doesn’t surprise her one bit. After publicly accepting her title at last night’s official finale celebration at New York’s Therapy lounge, Miss Sanchez — also known as Orlando native James Ross, who just turned 22 — spoke to us about how she transformed her villainess status into victory.

Advocate.com: Did you get any sleep after last night’s finale viewing party?
Tyra Sanchez: Actually, right after my number I went down, changed, and went right back to the hotel, because I knew today was going to be a busy day. I had a lot of fun at the party, though.

The finale was filmed many months ago. How did you keep your victory a secret for so long?
If I ever felt I needed to talk about it, vent, or scream it out, I’d go in the bathroom, close the door, look in the mirror, and just talk to myself.

Knowing that you had won, what was it like to sit at the finale viewing party with the other finalists and all those people watching you watch yourself?
It felt really good, but it was strange because I could tell that some of the room was rooting more for JuJubee and Raven. I don’t think anyone was expecting me to win.

Are you mad at people who didn’t root for you from start to finish?
No, everyone’s entitled to their own opinion, but it makes me upset when people say that I didn’t deserve to win. I honestly think I deserved to win. I gave you drag. I did everything the judges asked, times 10.

Has anyone said to your face that you didn’t deserve to win?
No one’s said that to my face, but yesterday we all did The Wendy Williams Show, and some people came up and were like, “I love you all, but I’m rooting for you, JuJu.” In my mind, I was just saying, "OK, you just wait till tonight."

Since Ru often called you “the other Tyra,” I’d love to see you chat with Tyra Banks too — though she might cut you for stealing her name.
I don’t think she’d cut me, but I would love to meet Tyra Banks. I have this crazy idea to be on her show, but when it comes on it’s me, and I say, “This is the new Tyra show.” Then she comes out, and I have on exactly the same outfit, hair, and makeup as she has on. That would be hilarious.

Though you had won several challenges during the season, many people did see you as the dark horse going into the finale, but many also felt that you really proved yourself worthy of the crown in the final challenges. Do you feel like you saved your best for last?
No, I gave my best every time. I stayed consistent, and I didn’t fall under. I remained true to who I was, and I gave more and more every week.

In last night’s reunion special, Ru, talking about your performance in the wedding dress challenge, said, “Bitch, your pussy was on fire.” I’m not exactly sure what that means, but I could tell that it was probably the biggest compliment she could give a drag queen.
Yeah, It felt really good to know that she thought that my idea was really hot and something that she would probably try herself.

Tags: television