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  Toughest Test For Randy Caballero,
But Im Ready!

By Barbara Pinnella

On July 1st opportunity will shine down on the undefeated (11-0, 7 KOs) 20-year-old Randy Caballero, when he faces the biggest test of his career. On that Friday night he will go up against another man with an 0 in that loss column and eight wins, Alexis Santiago, for the currently vacant WBC Youth Title.

The showdown will take place in Caballeros backyard, Fantasy Springs Hotel and Casino in Indio, California. The fight is for a scheduled eight rounds, the first time Randy has gone that far. But when I spoke with him he had just finished sparring nine rounds, so he is not anticipating any problems with that.

As with many fighters, Randy stays out of the preliminaries that go into making the fight, but promoter Golden Boy, manager Cameron Dunkin, and trainer/father Marcos Caballero all agreed that it was time for their fighter to take a more difficult road.

I know this is a big step up for me, an excited Caballero told me, and this is what I want. Im glad its here in my home town so I can get all my family and friends and fans out here. So its a great thing.

Santiago is not a complete stranger to Randy. I fought him as an amateur in a National tournament, and I beat him. Other than that Ive seen him fight a couple of times hes a tough kid. Im not taking anything away from him, he is 8-0. But like Ive said from the beginning, Im not going to let anybody come in my home town and beat me.

Knowing this is his first title fight also, I know hes gonna come in tough trying to win, were both undefeated and neither one of us want to lose. But Im making sure Im not coming out with that loss on July 1st.

And even though Caballero knows that Santiago is blocking the door for now, there is already talk about Randy fighting on the Victor Ortiz/Floyd Mayweather undercard in September.

Thats what Im hoping, he said. Im going to take a little break after this fight. Ill probably take August off. Im not going to stay away from the gym. Im still going to stick with the gym I dont want to get too big but Im going to rest my body a little. Hopefully in September they get me on that card. If not its fine, Ill just take a little longer break and then jump into whatever they have lined up next for me.

Caballero has been in Las Vegas before, as he was on the card under Marcos Maidana and Amir Khan. It felt good to be under that card. But just to be under Mayweather, growing up watching him fight and looking up to him my idol. But you know what? Victor Ortiz is my boy and I have faith in him that he can take this one, and hopefully he comes out with the win. And hopefully Im there to fight under that card and witness it with my own eyes.

Randy has nothing but good things to say about his trainer and father, Marcos. My dad is so excited. I can see it in his eyes. The glow in his eyes is something I love seeing from my dad. He has always been there for me and always supported me 100%, and hell always be there until the end of my career, and I thank him for that.

Growing up and being a boxer my dad always had that dream to become someone in the sport when he was fighting. Then having my older brother and then me, he never got to pursue his dream. Im here, and hes taught me everything he knows about boxing. Were both growing up in the sport, learning new things. Everything he learns he teaches me, everything I learn I take it to the camp and we learn from there.

It is often said that it is hard to teach those closest to you. If there is an extra little push, thats what I need. The extra push he gives me is what keeps me moving forward in the sport. Me knowing its my dad and not someone else yelling at me, telling me what to do, Im glad its my dad. I dont feel any pressure.

Caballero also gives credit to his brother Robert, for making him strong. When we were little we would go in my dads room and get his gloves, his shoes, headgear well, sometimes no headgear and then walk in the living room and have my dad check us out. Wed fight until one of us cried. It was me that ended up crying because I was the smaller one, but I thank my brother because it toughened me up.

Randy is very aware of what can happen when one makes it big in the business. He has seen those who have blown all their money and have nothing left, or those who get into the drug and party haze. He is also aware of how easy it is to be taken advantage of. And he has no intention of changing if he does reach the top of his game.

My parents raised me right, he said. I know whos been there for me. People will come and go, but I know whos always stood by me. When you get the money and the fame people want to hang out with you, but where were you at the beginning of my career? I know where I came from.

Its a small valley, Coachella. I have two friends that are real close to me. I dont hang out with a bunch of people. Im focused on my sport. And I know who has been there for me and who has not.

As most journalists know, it doesnt matter what the venue, sometimes its hard to write about an individual and sound positive, when that person is a jerk. That is definitely not the case here, and I believe Randy when he says he will not change. After following this young mans professional career from the get-go, he and his camp have always been a pleasure to be around, and I wish them all the best.

Be safe and God Bless,
Viva La Raza,


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