HISTORY OF THE MWF
The BeginningsThe story of the MWF begins in the late 1800’s, when bullfighting was the most popular spectator sport in Mexico. The sport had one drawback – the arenas built at the time were small, and spectators often had to wait for their chance to go inside. As a result, an entire industry was born to entertain the crowds waiting for bullfights. There were fortune tellers, carnival games and fights. The fights were amateurish in nature and often resulted in two men rolling around on the ground, each trying to pin the other.
They were put on by local bookies, who would challenge the men in the crowd to wrestle a strongman they were promoting. If the strongman won, the bookie collected the bets and paid ten percent to his star. While the reputation of some strongmen grew into legends, they would rarely travel outside of their city for fights.
There were two reasons for this: first, the bookie business was very territorial, meaning that a bookie from one city couldn’t do business in another. The second reason was that the rules of fighting differed between cities and sometimes between neighborhoods.
Establishing the FederationThe solution to these two problems came in the form of Eduardo Romero Córdoba. Córdoba was a successful bookie in Poza Rica, promoting almost 40 strongmen. His fights were so popular that other bookies in his city started to use his rules. At this time, strongmen were still fighting people from the crowd.
As business grew, Córdoba realized two things: famous fighters were having trouble finding opponents, and people would never bet against a legendary strongman. His solution to this was simple: send his fighters to a different town and bet on them. He overcame the different rules by sending scouts to learn them before a fight.
While away, his fighters were mostly victorious. This resulted in grudge matches on Córdoba’s turf, where his fighters had an added advantage of knowing the rules. As a result, neighboring towns and cities started to learn them.
By 1897, Córdoba was promoting fighters in 5 different Mexican states. His fighters were heavily promoted and the Mexican Wrestling Federation was born. It had official rules, standings and judges. Bookies from all over Mexico were joining to get a piece of the action.
The MustacheBy the time the Mexican Revolution started in 1910, Córdoba had wrestlers in all of Mexico. There were still independent bookies pitting their strongmen against Córdoba’s wrestlers, and sometimes crowds didn’t know which fighter to root for.
In a brilliant move, Córdoba demanded that all his wrestlers grow a Zapata mustache. Emiliano Zapata was a heroic figure in the Mexican Revolution and was instantly recognizable because of his trademark mustache. By sporting the same mustache, Córdoba’s wrestlers were thought of as the good guys, while anyone fighting them was a bad guy.
The mustache is now worn by every Mexican Wrestling Federation Superstar, regardless of whether they’re on the Good or Contra side.
Present DayLong before Córdoba’s death in 1942, the Mexican Wrestling Federation had reached great popularity in Mexico. Although somewhat overshadowed by the arrival of the masked wrestlers and lucha libre, the Federation continues to operate and grow.
23: PASTO EL SPASTO V. EL GIGANTE
OCT 30: EL SMACKER
NOV 6: LAMBADOR
V. EL PUNK