Yan Barthelemy Workout Quotes from my Boxing Diary

barthelemyJaime Castro-Núñez - Los Angeles, CA. April 3, 2008: It's 11:45 PM and I'm inside the aircraft, ready to go to Miami. My wife is next to me. When I told her that I had bought two tickets to Florida, she thought we were having a second honey moon. But soon she realized that I was going to interview some boxers and I needed an extra pair of hands. At the beginning she wasn't that excited, but the idea of leaving the crowded LA for a weekend was enough, even if it was to interview "sweaty guys" as she said. But now that we're ready to depart, she looks comfortable, perhaps resigned.

Miami, FL. April 4, 2008
It was 7:30 AM when we landed at the Fort Lauderdale airport. We took a taxi to Miami, rented a car, and then went to the hotel.. “Honey, you've two hours to take a shower and get ready. Trainer Roberto Quesada asked me to be there at 12:00 PM and remember that we don't know the area,” I said to her. “Only two hours to get ready?” she replied. “Yes, 120 minutes and you already spent five. Get ready.” We took Doral Avenue toward the west, and then made a left on 72th Street. Minutes later, we reached the Miami Fight gym, where Roberto Quesada and Mario Santamaría were waiting for us.

We were talking about boxing when all of a sudden a thin, fibrous athlete entered the gym. “He's Yan Barthelemy, from Cuba, future champion of the world,” said Quesada with his characteristic, strong Cuban accent. “He won the gold medal at the 2004 Summer Olympics, but now lives and trains here in Miami. He’s fighting on April 12 in Tampa, on the undercard of Antonio Tarver-Clinton Woods.”

barthelemyShy and circumspect, the Olympic champion approached us. “I was born in Arroyo Naranjo, Cuba, on March 5, 1980,” he said while wrapping up his hands. Then some calisthenics. Quesada helped him with the gloves and, few minutes later, the Cuban sensation started to castigate the punching bag: “boom,” “boom,” “boom,” I counted the explosions. Yan moved to the left and released a hook: “boom.”

Thirty minutes later, he went to the ring with Roberto Quesada. His movements were fast and well calculated. There is no doubt that he's ready for the next rival. “Yan likes to train. He's eager to become champion of the world. He's very fast. He's got privileged legs, thus making it difficult to hit him. It's hard to chase him,” stated the Cuban-American trainer.

Yan looked at the target and threw the next combination: “boom,” “boom,” “boom,” leaving a sordid echo inside the gym. Before releasing a left hand, somebody shouted: “Time!” He took a break. Bathed in his own perspiration and taking a deep breath, he had time to say: “We're working hard for the fight in Tampa. The preparation is perfect and I feel great…I feel great!”

As the Cuban rooster kept moving to the laterals and practicing the combinations we're going to watch next Saturday April 12th at the St. Pete Times Forum, Yan Barthelemy left me with the certainty that he’ll be champion of the world.

Miami, FL. April 5, 2008
When we reached the gym at 10:45 AM, Roberto Quesada and his pupils were already there, talking about boxing. Minutes later, Yan's training session began. “I haven't had any complication thanks God and I'm thinking about the victory,” he said. Then he continued: “I'm getting ready to be champion of the world. I know I'll find hard opponents in the way, but I always train hard in order to be in shape and I'm looking forward to the victory, whoever my rival is.”

Roberto Quesada, who will be in Barthelemy's corner this April 12th, stated: "I'm sure Yan will be victorious.”

Miami, FL. April 6, 2008
After two days surrounded by boxers, trainers, gloves, and punching bags, I’ve the feeling that my wife enjoyed it. “That boxer, what's his name? Barthelemy, right?” “Yes, Barthelemy,” I replied. “He looks in great shape,” she said while I was driving to the beach. Her comment reminded me of Quesada's statement yesterday: “Yan is always in great shape because he likes to train. Gym is the clue.”


Miami-Los Angeles. April 7, 2008
The most exciting weekend I've had in months is already gone. As I write on my boxing diary, I look at my wife and what I see surprises me. She's reviewing the pictures (more than one hundred!) that we took at the gym. We spent two days working and left yesterday for shopping and swimming. She knew of the purpose of the trip ever since I bought the tickets, but I kind of feel that it wasn't fear for her. Minutes later, her words erased my fears: “Honey, is there any chance we can flight to Tampa this coming Saturday? I haven't been in a fight ever and I wonder how Yan Barthelemy is gonna win. By knock out or unanimous decision? What do you think?

Article posted on 09.04.2008

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