Special delivery to Morecambe home of Tyson Fury by Blackpool's charity champ and generous ex-rugby ace
Big-hearted fundraiser Ryan Smith is well-known for handing out food and other items to those in need around his home town in Blackpool, but he recently made an extra-special personal delivery to Morecambe ... to world heavyweight boxing champion Tyson Fury.
'Big Ry', as he is affectionately known around the Fylde coast, helped to deliver fitness training equipment to The Gypsy King’s Morecambe home after a 200-mile dash ahead of the coronavirus ‘lockdown’.
And Fury showed his gratitude by paying for hand-sanitiser which Ry has since distributed
It was all made possible by Blackpool businessman Spencer Brown, whose commercial agency Gold Star counts Fury among its clients.
Knowing the champ was on the lookout for more equipment to train at home while the gyms are out of bounds, Brown set to work and of course found his pal Ry more than happy to help.
Spencer takes up the story: “We were running out of time because all the gyms and other places where you could get this equipment were closing down.
“We rang round looking for equipment of the right quality. Nobody could help us until a company in Ripon agreed to lend us a treadmill, running machine, weights, a bench and dumbbells, which Tyson could use in his front room. Of course Ryan threw his hat into the ring to help out.
"Ry and two others went from Blackpool to North Yorkshire to Morecambe, and Tyson was over the moon.”
Special thanks were due to former professional rugby league player Andy Wray, whose Ripon-based company iGOTDOMS provided the equipment collected by Ryan and co.
Their three-hour drive took another dramatic twist as they arrived at the Fury residence just as the Prime Minister was broadcasting live on TV and announcing more stringent measures to counter the spread of the virus.
Ryan takes up the tale: “Tyson said to me, ‘You’ve got here just in time!’ I wasn’t sure whether we would have to go into lockdown at his place but we managed to get back to Blackpool.”
It was a rewarding journey for Ry, who has since distributed the sanitisers Fury paid for around elderly people’s homes.
iGOTDOMS specialises in supplying compression clothing for the sports industry. Physiotherapist Wray's clients include many top boxers - such as Shawn Porter, Jorge Linares and Kell Brook - and Super League clubs.
Wray said: "I wanted to loan my personal gym equipment to Tyson as mine is a sterilised physiotherapy clinic, so I knew it would be safe to get to him in this coronavirus outbreak.
"It’s important to me that our nation's favourite undisputed heavyweight champion has the opportunity to continue his fitness regime, allowing the many people who watch him to continue to becoming mentally and physically stronger during his dominance of the division.
"I feel a lot of people can relate to Tyson and his big heart makes him all the greater as our champion."
Ry is renowned for staging star-studded sporting events in Blackpool to raise money for those in need.
The enforced break from organised sport has not stopped Ryan, who recently delivered Easter eggs to hospitals as well as the hand-sanitisers to care homes.
Champ Fury thanked Ry in a video attached to this article.
For more information on Andy Wray's company visit www.igotdoms.com