Tulare's Richard Torrez Jr.'s dreams of boxing in the Olympics will have to wait till 2021

TULARE, Calif. (KFSN) -- The Olympic Games have been postponed to July 2021.

That means local boxer Richard Torrez Jr. has to wait another year to fulfill his dreams.

"People ask why did I chose boxing, it's not really that, boxing chose me."

The 20-year-old is a third-generation boxer. His grandfather paved the way in 1945 and now he is carrying on the family name.

"He comes along and takes it to the next level, every generation has taken it a level further," says his father Richard Torrez Sr.

"I remember being eight years old running around saying I'm going to be an Olympic champion one day, it's been a dream my entire life," says his son.

Torrez was set to compete in the final qualifying tournament for the Olympic Games this month in Argentina. He was just one win away from making team USA.

"Three fourths of the way through the camp they told us, 'Hey, everything got postponed'. It's difficult because you work so hard and you prepare so much, you get ready mentally for this day. At least it's not cancelled, that's my thing out of this is I still have a shot to be an Olympian, if it means waiting one more year I'll do that."

The Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs has been shut down for 30 days. The super heavyweight fighter is now training at his family's gym in Tulare.

Torrez will now have to wait till the start of 2021 to fight at the international qualifier. Even though that seems like a long way away, getting the chance to put Tulare on the map is something that drives him daily.

"I was just looking at my pan-American fight the other day against Cuba, and the commentators are in Spanish but then you hear 'Tulare, California'. A joy and a pride came over me," he says.

Torrez will continue to train but is also spending time doing other things he loves, like dabbling in magic tricks, walking his Great Dane, and playing the guitar.

As for his boxing, while his Olympic dreams are on hold, he's carrying on the Torrez name.
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