We are now at the number 10 entry in the series, which makes us a third of the way through of the regular Royal Rumble numbers, or half the inaugural Royal Rumble in 1988 which had 20 participants, or a quarter of the way through the 2011 Royal Rumble which had 40 participants. This is one of the many changes the Royal Rumble has gone through in its over 30-year history.
The Royal Rumble was initially set up as a contest for bragging rights, similar to that of King of the Ring and the winner never received any reward for their victory. This changed in 1992 when the vacant WWF belt was awarded to the winner of the Royal Rumble, Ric Flair, and in 1993 the WWF decided to crown the winner of the Royal Rumble the number 1 contender and would go to main event Wrestlemania for the belt. This was the case until 2006 when Rey Mysterio won the Royal Rumble. Despite his heroic efforts, and the emotional dedication of his victory to his fallen friend in Eddie Guerrero, Rey and his title match was pushed down the Wrestlemania card, a trend that has since been set as the new normal.
Due to the brand split and the creation of the World Heavyweight Championship in 2002, winners of the Royal Rumble were able to choose which champion they would face at Wrestlemania.
Only Chris Benoit in 2004 and Asuka in 2018 have used their Royal Rumble victories to switch brands and challenge for the other brand's title. Chris Benoit used his Royal Rumble victory to cross from Smackdown to Raw and challenge Triple H for his Heavyweight title. While Asuka crossed from Raw to Smackdown to challenge Charlotte Flair for her Smackdown women's title.
You can see the other entries in this series below:
Part 5 is here