George Francis: Trainer Of Champions book by George Francis and Graeme Fife plus original black & white 5" x 4" press photo (Universal Pictorial Press and Agency of London copyright stamped on reverse)
The book is an autobiography of boxing trainer, George Francis. Born in 1928 in the slums of Camden Town, he left school at the age of 11, and immediately started work. His earliest involvement with boxing was as a bare knuckle street fighter but, after a spell in Wormwood Scrubs, he turned from pavement warfare to amateur boxing. He was a member of a local boxing club and it was here that he decided to switch from boxer to trainer, and soon he took on professional fighters - particularly black fighters. This was to be the start of an amazing career which saw of the best trainers in the World, involved with some of the greatest boxers in the World including Frank Bruno, John Conteh, Cornelius Boza-Edwards and John Mugabe. Francis's story is a remarkable slice of social history, an ebullient record of a colourful man and it offers an inside view of the mystique of the boxing trainer as motivator, conditioner and strategist. Francis survived setbacks and hardships that would have destroyed lesser men but he survived with good humour and exceptional moral strength. This book includes quotes from such well-known figures as Frank Bruno and Don King and the George Francis fitness method - unique to the man who is known as the best conditioner of boxers.
Product Book details
Hardcover: 224 pages
Publisher: Mainstream Publishing; 1st Edition edition (1 Sept. 1998)
Book condition is very good with clean and crisp pages, unfortunately the dust jacket has a middle back cover tear, small paper loss to top spine edge & creasing to cover edges. The photo is an additional extra in mint condition.
George Albert Francis (28 June 1928–4 April 2002), known professionally as George Francis, was a British boxing athletic trainer who trained World champion boxers such as Frank Bruno, John Conteh, Bunny Sterling, John Mugabi, and Cornelius Boza Edwards.
George Francis was born in Camden Town, North London. He was only eight when his father died, and left school at the age of 11 to support his family. In the 1930's, he was a bare knuckle fighter. After a local policemen persuaded him to give that up he turned to amateur boxing. Francis worked his way up the ranks at Covent Garden Market and eventually became a porter. He was a member of a local boxing club and it was there that he decided to switch from boxer to trainer. These early ventures into the fight game were to be the start of a career which saw him become involved with some of the greatest boxers in the World.
Francis was known for making his boxers run on Hampstead Heath and swim in the cold water of Highgate Men's Pond as part of their training.
After Paul McCartney visited Francis's gym to watch Conteh train, McCartney employed Francis's son Michael as a bodyguard.
Francis was found hanged at his home in Hillway, Highgate, apparently having committed suicide on 3 or 4 April 2002. He was 73. His death followed a period of severe depression that occurred after the deaths of both his wife, Joan, and his son, Simon.