In the Soundview neighborhood of the Bronx, cooks, construction workers, and security guards leave their day jobs at the door and put on masks that transform them into luchadores at the Bronx Wrestling Federation (BWF) and wrestling school.
The Bronx Wrestling Federation was founded by Francisco Segundo, also known as, Bronco Internacional.
“Lucha for me is impressive. It is magic,” Segundo said in a video for Great Big Story.
The BWF brings over 50 wrestlers to the ring. They come from all walks of life and ages.
“The majority of wrestlers work different jobs …they take the time to dedicate themselves to lucha libre,” Segundo said.
Wrestlers come from different labor backgrounds and ethnic backgrounds. The BWF has members from Mexico, Ecuador, Puerto Rico, Italy, Spain, and the Dominican Republic.
The Bronx Wrestling Federation and school were established 2010. However, Segundo has dedicated over 30 years to lucha libre. Now in his 50’s he says that as he nears the end of his career in lucha libre and as “Bronco Internacional,” he will graciously step out of the ring and continue his work off the ring with a new generation of luchadores eager to wrestle in the Bronx.
“I feel super proud to fulfill the role of Bronco Internacional,” Segundo said.