Print this article
World Boxing Federation Champions Of The Past: Cornelius Carr
                                            Bookmark and Share


FEATURE   Photo: Former World Boxing Federation (WBF) World Middleweight Champion Cornelius Carr. 

Since the World Boxing Federation was originally founded by American Larry Carrier in 1988, many of the sport’s biggest names have won a WBF title, and proudly defended the blue, red and gold belt all over the world.

In the Champions Of The Past Series we take a closer look at some of the boxers who held WBF titles in years gone by, from lesser known champions to world renowned fighters, legends of the sport and current or future Hall of Famers.


Surviving meningitis at the age of nine, former World Boxing Federation (WBF) World Middleweight Champion Cornelius Carr was a fighter from early on. Real name John Thomas Carr, he was born in April of 1969 in Teeside, near Middlesbrough, England.

When he was eleven he started boxing at Grangetown Amateur Boxing Club in Middlesbrough, and had a good amateur career, going 40-3 while reaching the ABA finals at seventeen and winning gold for England in a multi-nations tournament in Sardinia.

Shortly after his triumph in Sardinia, Carr decided he wanted to turn professional and was signed up by one of the world leading promoters in Frank Warren. In September of 1987, still only eighteen years old, he made his paid debut at York Hall in London, stopping Paul Burton (3-2) in five rounds.

Through December of 1988, Car build an unblemished 9-0 (6) record and looked promising doing it. So it was quite a shock when he was stopped in three rounds by unheralded Beninese Georges Bocco (1-1 on BoxRec, but he likely had more unrecorded bouts) on March 22, 1989.

It was back to the drawing-board, but, while he was matched carefully over the next four years, Carr defeated some decent opponents such as Peter Gorny (8-3), Frank Eubank (6-4), a cousin of the legendary Chris Eubank, Carlo Colarusso (7-4) and Paul Burton (10-9), among others.

He also spend time in America, learning his trade and sparring the likes of Roy Jones Jr., who would also go on to become a WBF World Champion. Interestingly, while in the USA, Carr (voluntarily) went inside the Louisiana State Penitentiary where he sparred some of the prisoners.

At 22-1 (13), and twenty-four years old, he was deemed ready to challenge former European Champion James Cook (25-9) for his British Super Middleweight title, on March 11, 1994 in the main event of a show staged where it all started for Carr, the York Hall.

By far the best boxer Carr had faced, Cook had operated at a much higher level and won seven straight since losing the European title four years earlier. The Jamaica-born Londoner held victories over the likes of Michael Watson, Errol Christie and Sam Storey, to name a few, and many felt he would be too much for Carr.

But Carr proved his doubters wrong, and became British Super Middleweight Champion after twelve rounds, as scoring referee Paul Thomas handed in a tally of 118-116,5. It was a break-through night for Carr, who made a name for himself and gatecrashed the world rankings.

Unfortunately things stalled after that, as Cornelius only had three fights, all low-profile non-title bout victories, over the next sixteen months. But when the next big fight finally came, in the winter of 1995, it was an outright monster!

Frank Warren matched Carr with reigning WBO World Super Middleweight Champion Steve Collins (30-3) on November 25 at The Point in Dublin, Ireland. Collins had taken the title from Chris Eubank and retained it in a rematch, so it was a monumental task for the challenger.

In front of 7000 fans, Carr did extremely well and gave Collins a grueling fight before losing on points by scores of 116-112, 116-112 and 117-111, margins which didn't do the effort of Carr much justice. Collins deserved to win, but Carr proved he was genuine world class.

After a routine comeback victory over Danny Juma (2-4-1) in March of1996, Carr didn't box for over a year before he stepped in the ring against the excellent Dean Francis (15-1) in a fight for the WBO Intercontinental Super Middleweight title.

Francis was not the kind of opponent you could beat rusty, and the inactivity proved disastrous as Carr was stopped in seven rounds. All the momentum he had gained from the world title-challenge against Collins was now gone, and it was time to rebuild once again.

After one-and-a-half year out of the ring, and no longer promoted by Warren, Carr returned as a Middleweight in September of 1998 to stop journeyman Darren Covill (7-9-1) in two rounds on a small show at the Town Hall in Acton, west London.

After two more wins at his new weight-class to round out 1998, big things were in the making for 1999 as Carr was awarded a huge opportunity to win the vacant WBF World Middleweight title against American former two-time world champion Simon Brown.

Unfortunately Brown was forced to pull out shortly before the February fight due to injury, and a hasty replacement was found in former Commonwealth ruler and WBO world title-challenger Steve “The Viking” Foster (20-15-2) from Manchester.

Game but on the down-slide, the 38-year-old Foster tried his hardest but could not keep up with the superior boxing ability of Carr, who won the WBF World Middleweight title by wide 120-108, 120-109 and 120-110 scores.

The first world title-defense for Carr was set for October 31, 1999 at the David Lloyd Tennis Centre in Raynes Park, London. The man in the opposite corner was former WBO and WBA, and future WBC, world champion Dingaan Thobela (38-6-2) from South Africa.

Amazingly, Thobela had turned professional at Featherweight thirteen years earlier, and won the WBO World Lightweight title in 1990 and the WBA World Lightweight title in 1993. A year after the fight against Carr, “The Rose of Soweto” beat another Brit in Glenn Catley for the WBC World Super Middleweight crown.

So it was not just anybody whom Carr faced that night, and it was by far not an over-the-hill former world champion coming for a pay-day. Thobela proved his class, and one judge saw it completely even at 114-114. Luckily for Carr, the two other judges had him winning 117-114 and 117-113.

The Thobela victory was arguably the high-point of his career. Carr went inactive for another year, and returned to Super Middleweight in December of 2000, winning a four-rounder on points against Gary Beardsley (10-6-1).

In February of 2001 he lost on points over six rounds to Sam Soliman (11-6) from Australia, who, while he would prove to be a top-class fighter and win world championships later in his career, was considered someone that Carr should beat handily.

Still only thirty-one years old at the time, Carr never boxed again and retired with a fine 34-4 (17) record. He instead decided to pass on his knowledge to others, and became a personal trainer. These days he lives in seaside town Bournemouth.

  Part 68: Zolani Marali
  Part 67: Nicky Bentz
  Part 66: James Hare
  Part 65: Anne Sophie Mathis
  Part 64: Earl Butler
  Part 63: Dave Russell
  Part 62: Tony Dodson
  Part 61: Pete Taliaferro
  Part 60: Fredrik Alvarez
  Part 59: Ajose Olusegun
  Part 58: Chevelle Hallback
  Part 57: Evander Holyfield
  Part 56: Peter Culshaw
  Part 55: Rolando Toyogon
  Part 54: Joaquin Velasquez
  Part 53: Steve Molitor
  Part 52: Nadya Hokmi
  Part 51: Bert Cooper
  Part 50: Alfred Kotey
  Part 49: Yosuke Nishijima
  Part 48: Wayne Rigby
  Part 47: Jesus Chong
  Part 46: Renata Szebeledi
  Part 45: Lester Ellis
  Part 44: Patrick Vungbo
  Part 43: Patrick Washington
  Part 42: Ric Siodora
  Part 41: Guy Waters
  Part 40: Natascha Ragosina
  Part 39: Nicky Cook
  Part 38: Fahprakorb Rakkiatgym
  Part 37: Felix Camacho
  Part 36: Homer Gibbins
  Part 35: Joe Bugner
  Part 34: Myriam Lamare
  Part 33: Darrin Morris
  Part 32: Suwito Lagola
  Part 31: Aaron Zarate
  Part 30: Tommy Small
  Part 29: Matthew Charleston
  Part 28: Jane Couch
  Part 27: Fahlan Sakkreerin
  Part 26: Kenny Keene
  Part 25: Yvan Mendy
  Part 24: Ronnie Magramo
  Part 23: Randall Yonker
  Part 22: Holly Holm
  Part 21: Vinnie Curto
  Part 20: Robin Reid
  Part 19: Lionel Butler
  Part 18: Mads Larsen
  Part 17: Ken Sigurani
  Part 16: Orlando Fernandez
  Part 15: Roger Turner
  Part 14: Roy Jones Jr.
  Part 13: Fitz Vanderpool
  Part 12: Steve Roberts
  Part 11: Thulani "Sugarboy" Malinga
  Part 10: Junior Witter
  Part 9: Jimmy Thunder
  Part 8: Juan Lazcano
  Part 7: Jeff Malcolm
  Part 6: Ricky Parkey
  Part 5: Carl Daniels
  Part 4: Angel Manfredy
  Part 3: Samson Dutch Boy Gym
  Part 2: Greg Haugen
  Part 1: Johnny Nelson

| HOME |













Copyright © wbf -  all rights reserved     |     world boxing federation     |     |     webdesign by f.j.e.e.k. 2009     |