In an effort to ensure American boxers have access to the very best training and support in the world in advance of the 2012 Olympic Games in London, the U.S. Olympic Committee (USOC), USA Boxing and Freddie Roach Training, Inc. have formed a unique partnership which will give America’s elite amateur boxers access to the world class services of Freddie Roach and his Wild Card Boxing Club in Hollywood, Calif., a USA Boxing registered club since 1997.
“I’d like to thank Freddie and his team for their willingness to help our boxers achieve their highest potential,” said USOC CEO Scott Blackmun. “I’m thrilled that we were able to make this happen and can’t wait to see the results.”
A former amateur and professional boxer himself and one of the most sought after trainers in the world, Roach has been training elite boxers for more than 20 years and has been in the corner of 17 World Champions at the professional level. Roach has also been honored as Trainer of the Year by the Boxing Writers Association of America a record five times and has been inducted into the World Boxing Hall of Fame, the New England Boxing Hall of Fame, and most recently the California Boxing Hall of Fame.
“An Olympic medal is one of the greatest accomplishments in all of sport, and I promise to do all I can to ensure that these young men and women are fully prepared to go to London to proudly represent our country,” said Roach. “A special thanks to USA Boxing and the USOC for supporting this initiative and Casey Wasserman and Nick Khan for helping to put this together. This partnership is an exciting new chapter in my career and I can’t wait to get started.”
The program being instituted by this new partnership is designed to act as a resource for up to ten medal-potential athletes to attend multi-day training sessions at the Wild Card Gym with their personal coaches and USA Boxing’s National Coach Joe Zanders. These sessions will be established under the leadership of Freddie Roach and his staff and will be used to help provide feedback and strategy on the athletes’ preparation for the Olympic Games. The USOC will support this program as an add-on to the 2011-12 approved high performance plan with the intent of providing a unique and valuable resource for the designated athletes as a supplement to the existing coaching structure.
“President Harold Adonis and the USA Boxing board of directors fully support and thank the USOC and Scott Blackmun for facilitating these efforts as well as Freddie Roach for the generous gift of his time,” said USA Boxing Executive Director Anthony Bartkowski. “The addition of Freddie Roach to the USA Boxing High Performance and National Coaching structure is an innovative concept that will aid in our mission of winning Olympic medals. Freddie’s extensive expertise will augment our high performance and training plans, and we look forward to working with him to build international success in London and beyond.”
USA Boxing has identified the lack of integration of its athletes’ personal coaches into past training plans as a key weakness in the organization’s major event preparation. The inclusion of the U.S. medal hopefuls’ own coaches in Freddie Roach’s training sessions will be a critical component. These unique training opportunities will provide USA Boxing’s grassroots coaches with innovative training plans and tips they can take to their local gyms and share with additional athletes and fellow local coaches.
Roach’s work with USA Boxing will begin later this month as he joins USA Boxing’s coaching team at a High Performance retreat at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo. and will continue at additional key events throughout the summer. As women’s boxing will make its Olympic debut at the 2012 Olympic Games in London, Roach will be working with top medal hopefuls on both the men’s and women’s side during his training sessions at the Wild Card Boxing Club.
Freddie Roach’s Press Conference Quotes
“It’s a privilege to work with the Olympic boxers. I had a chance to experience the Olympics in 1976. Being there and being part of it was an unbelievable experience. I always dreamed of being an Olympic boxer.
“I want to help the Olympic team get back into form and get some medals, and hopefully get some gold medals.
“I think with my experience I can help us get back in there to win some medals.
“There’s a lot of politics in the Olympics but I’m pretty good at making parents and coaches part of the team. I can handle egos like that – I think we all have them.
“If you have a good team behind you that will lead to success.
“At first I was asked to train the Philippine team but I told Nick (Khan) I wanted to help the American team.
“I’m very proud of this. I hope to make a difference and I can’t wait to start.”