There's no horse play in Frank Peralta's gym. Just many young boxers working as hard as they can to improve their craft.
The work ethic can easily be seen from up to 40 boxers ranging in ages from 7-21 in the Carson City Boxing Club's facility in the Highway 50 East Business Center. Under Peralta and assistant coach Antonio Lopez, these boxers are constantly in motion for four nights a week at the facility. Boys and girls are welcome to participate in the club, which currently has six girls.
Some of the club's finest boxers will be on display when the club hosts an amateur boxing event at 2 p.m. Sunday in the Slot World parking lot. Fifteen bouts are scheduled featuring boxers from all over Northern Nevada, Sacramento and Watsonville, Calif.
Among the club's boxers scheduled to be featured are 12-year-old Fabian "Smooth" Martinez, who attends Carson Middle School. Martinez has earned his nickname for how smooth he is in the ring and he has a 5-0 record. He's coming off a performance last Saturday in a card in Reno hosted by the Reno Jets in which he won the Best Bout award.
Martinez said watching boxing and fighters like Muhammad Ali on television got him interested in boxing. "It got me inspired," he said.
When asked what the secret of his success has been, Martinez simply replied, "speed." "It makes me train hard," said Martinez about what the club does for him. "It works me out."
He then turned to Peralta and said, "Right now, he gave it to me," commenting on his success.
Twelve-year-old Isaac Perez, a seventh grader at Carson Middle School who is 9-0, is also among the club's boxers who's scheduled to be featured. Peralta said that while Martinez is the smooth boxer, Perez is the smart one.
"I used to play soccer, but I got tired of it," said Perez, commenting that soccer doesn't provide the thrill that boxing does.
"The adrenaline that you need and how you have to figure out your opponent" is what Perez said when asked why he likes boxing.
"It got me off the streets and it feels good that I'm doing well. It makes me train hard. I'm not lazy."
Twenty-one-year-old Fabian Castellanos, a Carson High graduate who works in construction, is also scheduled to fight.
"I want to go pro," he said. "I'm going to see how well I do this year. If things turn out well, I'll give it a shot."
Another one of the club's top fighters to be featured will be 16-year-old Daniel Ortega, who will be a junior at CHS.
Peralta said his motivation for running the club is simple. "My goal is just to keep them off the streets," he said.
The club used to be in the old National Guard building, but lost its space in that facility. "We were pretty much on the streets, not doing anything," he said.
Then the chance came to move into the Highway 50 East Business Center and thanks to the sponsorship of Cash Plus, it became a reality.
"If it wasn't for Cash Plus, we wouldn't have a gym," Peralta said. "It's pretty hard to find sponsors, but I understand."
Peralta began coaching his nine-year-old son, Mike, in 1991. Mike, who's now 23 and living in Sacramento, is set to turn pro.
Peralta's boxers have to tow the line and along with no horse play, other rules include no foul language. "It's just a lot of discipline," he said. "This is a place for the kids."
Another important rule is the boxers have to keep up with their school work. "That's the No. 1 thing," Peralta said. "They better go to school before they come here. We try to help them as much as we can."
Peralta also said parents are more than welcome to come. "When parents want to come over here, they're more than welcome to come in."
They'll see that the work ethic begins as soon as the boxers enter. "When they hit that door, when they come into this place, they're working," Peralta said.