Patricio “Cacahuate” Manuel is a true transgender pioneer

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Patricio “Cacahuate” Manuel was born and raised in Los Angeles on July 22, 1985 and is a professional boxer. He’s also the first openly transgender boxer to fight professionally in the U.S.

Patricio is not Latino, but he identifies as Black and was raised in the Mexican-dominated boxing gyms of L.A. where he earned his nickname “Cacahuate,” or peanut.

Back In 2018, he became the first transgender boxer in history to have a professional fight. Before making his transition, his last fight as a woman back in 2012 against Tiara Brown. After being a five-time national amateur champion, as well as competing in the 2012 Women’s U.S. Olympic Trials, he identified himself as a man. Manuel was eliminated from the trials after being forced to withdraw due to a shoulder injury.

He began his transition with hormone treatments in 2013 and did have top surgery in 2014. Manuel became a keynote speaker at the launch event for the San Francisco 49ers LGBTQ+ and allies fan club that was held at Levi’s Stadium in May of 2019. Back in September of 2019 he became the new face of Everlast boxing equipment.

Manuel flexes at the match on Saturday in Indio, Calif.

He made his professional boxing debut after he transitioned and that was on a Golden Boy Promotions event back on December 8, 2018, in Indio, California against Hugo Aguilar of Iztacalco, Mexico. Two days prior to the bout, Aguilar knew of Manuel’s transition and he stated: “For me, it’s very respectable.” He continues, “It doesn’t change anything for me. In the ring, he wants to win and I want to win too.” Patricio was able to defeat him via unanimous decision in a four-round super featherweight fight after all three judges scored the bout 39–37.

Fast forward to now, due to COVID-19 shutting down arenas and boxing rings in 2020, its been a dificult journey for Manuel. Even now as some networks and promotions are able to put on events, he’s still looking for his next fight. To read more about Patricio “Cacahuate” Manuel’s incredible story, head out to ESPN.com by going here.

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