The scene is rugged Mount Charleston in Las Vegas and our roving TBC cameraman Marcelino Castillo caught up with trainer Jorge Capetillo as he took a trio of fighters through their roadwork for upcoming fights.
Capetillo had the men out early in the morning and the Top Rank trainer describes a five mile run, all uphill up to 8,000 feet of elevation as a “stamina builder”.
Looking trim and fit was undefeated heavyweight prospect Andy Ruiz Jr (28-0). Ruiz Jr is preparing for a September 10th fight against Franklin Lawrence (21-2-2) as he gets in his third fight of 2016.
The fight is the main event of Top Rank's UniMas card at the Tachi Palace that also features Lightweight Ray Beltran. Ruiz Jr has been trying to stay active but his overall goal remains unchanged, as he wants to be the first Mexican to win a world heavyweight title.
Young Francisco Esparza (4-0) is coming off an August 5th victory on Golden Boy's L.A. Fight Club event at the Belasco Theater, and he reports taking just two days off before returning to the gym.
The 21 year old points to the training team of Jorge Capetillo and Fernando Vargas as the ones who guide him both inside and outside the ring.
The young Esparza is the first member of his family to box, and reports looking up a boxing gym in the phone book and asking his parents to take him there. “I loved it” says Esparza, who hopes to continue on his path to the top of the featherweight division.
Also working with coach Capetillo for his upcoming world title fight is Venezuela's Jorge Linares (40-3).
Capetillo describes a good relationship with Linares trainer Ismael Salas, and they have joined the Top Rank team to prepare for Linares' September 24th match with WBA 135 pound world titleholder Anthony “Milion Dolla” Crolla in Manchester, UK.
Linares reports that his feels recovered from hand surgery, and that he spent a month training in Japan before spending the last month in Las Vegas training for this upcoming fight.
Linares describes Crolla as having a similar style to himself in some ways, and he indicates he respects British fighters, saying “very few British fighters don't come forward and attack, and very few quit.”
Linares has been living in Las Vegas for the last two years, and he states a move to 140 pounds could be in his future, as is a return to the American market. Right now however, Linares is focused on Crolla and the job at hand.
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