The Biofile Get 2 Know Robert Garcia
Status: Former IBF Super Featherweight champion and current trainer of Antonio Margarito. Posted a career ring record of 34-3 (25 KO’s).
DOB: January 29, 1975 In: San Pedro, CA
Boxing Inspirations: “Sugar Ray Leonard. When I was younger, my dad used to put his fights on. I first met him at the Roy Jones-James Toney card in Las Vegas, took pictures with him. He said he saw me fight, said I was pretty good, keep up the good work, keep listening to my dad.”
Nickname: “Grandpa. At the gym, they said I’ve been there the longest.”
Hobbies: “Time with family, training and working with kids at the gym.”
Childhood Dream: “My first dream was – my brother Danny used to fight – I wanted to be like my brother. I looked at him like a hero. I missed, cried when he went to train in Los Angeles. Then I wanted to be world champion.”
First Boxing Memory: “My first memory was my first trophy when I was five-years-old, 50 pounds. It came out in the newspaper – the Press Courier in Oxnard. I remember showing it to all my neighborhood. As an amateur, I went to the western Trials for the 1992 Olympics – lost by one point to Guillermo Jorin. Nobody thought I’d be close. Nobody thought I’d even pass the locals in southern California.”
Favorite Boxers: “Ricardo Lopez – he never stopped moving, bouncing around. And when he throws, he throws hard punches. Roy Jones. Oscar De La Hoya. Chavez.”
Favorite Fights: “Hagler-Hearns, Barrera-McKinney.”
Favorite Movies: “Shawshank Redemption – can’t get up and get a drink of water in that one, really interesting movie. Scarface. Carlito’s Way.”
First Job: “Never had a job. My parents supported me throughout my career.”
First Car: “1982 dark orange Ford Thunderbird.”
Greatest Sports Moment: “Most exciting moment was when I won the IBF title against Harold Warren in 1998. Won a 12 round decision. When I heard him say, ‘…and the new IBF champion.'”
Most Painful Moment: “Losing the title to Diego Corrales (by KO).”
Favorite Meal: “I just like everything. My family owns a restaurant in Oxnard (La Cabinita). I’m always eating there.”
Favorite Ice Cream Flavor: “Vanilla.”
Funniest Boxers Encountered: “Oscar. Great guy. He liked to play around with us, go out, play pool, play golf. Mike Tyson. Another great guy. Great to be with. Met him in Arizona.”
Early Career Memory: “When I won the NABF title against Julian Wheeler in ’95. Before the fight, Wheeler was saying he knew my style and he’d win a clean decision. He was the one who represented the United States at the ’92 Olympics in Barcelona. I wanted to prove – if I was older, I could have done better in the Olympics. I wanted to prove it and that’s what I did – I won a 12-round decision against Wheeler.”
Garcia on Margarito’s dedication: “I trained with Oscar, with Fernado Vargas, but they did not train as hard as Antonio Margarito. (What motivates him?) His desire to be the best, his will to prove everybody wrong.”
Garcia on Margarito vs. Pacquiao: “This will be the mother of all wins, to beat Pacquiao. And we have a great chance to do it. Hopefully we can do good and pull it off.”
Other fighters Robert Garcia trained include: Joan Guzman, Brian Viloria, Steve Luevano, Nonito Donaire, Fernando Vargas and Victor Ortiz.
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