Chavez Recalls Classic Cinco De Mayo Bouts
One of the best fighters to come from Mexico, Julio Cesar Chavez has had several special moments in his career. Fighting around Cinco de Mayo many times, Chavez always appreciated the bouts he competed in.
Speaking to Jessie Vargas on “Peleamundo”, Matchroom Boxing’s premier podcast, Chavez (107-6-2) discussed the importance of the holiday, which recognizes Mexico’s victory over the French Empire in 1862.
“It’s a very special day for all Mexicans,” Chavez stated. “I fought many times in May representing all Mexicans. It’s something very, very special, something very beautiful feeling the love, the support from all the Mexican Americans that lived in the United States.
“Above all, the Mexicans, that truly are the ones who support other Mexicans who go and triumph in the United States. For them, it’s something great that one can represent them. I always tried to represent them in the best way. Fortunately, I gained their respect, but above all, I won the love of the people, nobody can take it away from me.
Chavez is a six-time world champion in three weight divisions. He won the WBC Light-Welterweight Title against Roger Mayweather on May 13, 1989, and won the WBC and lineal Light-Welterweight Titles from Frankie Randall on May 7, 1994. Chavez fought Randall three times, the first a loss via split decision in 1994. The rematch on May 7 of that year was the stuff of legend, with a lot of damage done to both men.
Chavez had a large cut over his eyebrow following an errant headbutt in the second bout. The fight was called off due to how bad the cut was, but because Randall was losing by a point, Chavez earned the win. The two wouldn’t face off again until 2004, when Chavez beat him on May 22 via unanimous decision. That was his last fight in Mexico before retiring after two more bouts.
“There are opponents that are complicated for us,” Chavez went on to say. “The truth is that for me, Frankie Randall’s style was always complicated for me. Even in the third fight, because in the second fight, even though I beat him the truth is that if it weren’t for the headbutt no one knows how it would have gone for me because I was already really tired.
“Honestly in that fight, I had prepared like never before. My addiction was already very far along. But I stopped for a bit there because I had lost, I wanted to avenge my loss. I stopped a bit, despite the fact that my addiction was already very advanced. I stopped a bit, I tried to stop a bit in order to take back my title and that’s how it went. I think I went a bit too far, I prepared so well, that I went into the fight over-trained.”
Chavez ended up being inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame in 2010. He is also a mentor to his son, Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. The reflection of his career and the holiday intertwining has allowed him to appreciate the special connection.