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Ben Fogle and Sid Owen weigh-in for Sport Relief

The competitors for the second Sport Relief Light Entertainment Boxing Belt were announced today at The Sports Café in London.

In the red corner will be former Castaway heart-throb Ben 'The Bear' Fogle (31) while in the blue corner is Sid 'The Snake' Owen (32), best known for playing Ricky Butcher in EastEnders.

Dressed in their Sport Relief robes and trunks, the two celebrity competitors stepped onto the scales under the supervision of the Amateur Boxing Association as part of their official pre-match weigh-in.

For the first time ever, judging of the fight will be left to the British public who will text in their winner for a People's champion at the end.

The two celebrity boxers will take part in a three round boxing bout which will be transmitted live on BBC ONE on Sport Relief Saturday - 10 July.

This will be one of the highlights of Sport Relief Saturday, a five-hour TV extravaganza which is set to be a fantastic evening's entertainment.

Ben will be trained by Jim McDonnell who coached Les Dennis and Grant Bovey and is currently trainer of former British and Commonwealth heavyweight champion Danny Williams.

Ben will also have former World Heavyweight Champion Frank Bruno on hand as his mentor.

Ben said: "I've already been training for a couple of marathons so am in pretty good shape. This will be a personal challenge for me and Sport Relief is such a great cause.

"I'm very stubborn when I get going so I won't let my training team down. They don't call me 'The Bear' for nothing!"

Showing Sid the ropes will be Frank Maloney, who coached Ricky Gervais, and Eugene Maloney, current trainer and manager of British heavyweight Matt Skelton.

Former World featherweight Champion Barry McGuigan will be stepping forward to be Sid's mentor.

Sid said: "With the help of Frank and Barry, I'll be ready for Ben. I'm looking forward to getting fit and intend to give it my best shot and Go the Extra Mile for Sport Relief.

"You could say that I'm quietly confident - watch out Ben!"

Film crews will be following both Ben and Sid through the highs and lows of their training and this will also be shown on 10 July.

Both Sid 'The Snake' and Ben 'The Bear' meet all the requirements of the Amateur Boxing Association (ABA) and have been declared Super Middleweights.

They have both also passed the first of a series of stringent medical checks to ensure that they are fit to fight.

Ben and Sid are using this as a great opportunity to get fit and are looking forward to finding out what it takes to become a boxer.

Both will undergo at least a month of intense training under the watchful eye of their experienced trainers.

Although the fight is very much a fun event and a way of raising money for Sport Relief's Go The Extra Mile campaign, the BBC has secured an official licence from the ABA to stage the bout.

Both boxers will also earn official ABA ME3 cards which means that they can fight in amateur boxing matches, should they want to, after the Sport Relief bout.

On the night both competitors will box with maximum protection - gloves, headgear, protectors and gum shields - and referee Bill Cox will be on hand to ensure the fight is a fair one.

Sport Relief was set up by Comic Relief and BBC Sport to tackle poverty and disadvantage, both in the UK and internationally.

Its debut in 2002 raised more than £14m, and that money is now hard at work.

This time around the vision is to harness the power, passion and goodness of sport to help change the world.

Venues up and down the country will host the Fitness First Sport Relief Mile and some of the best known faces from the world of sport and entertainment will line up alongside the public as the whole nation comes together to be part of a very special day.

Rachel Stevens, Sir Steve Redgrave, Jo Brand, Alec Stewart, Gordon Ramsay, Nick Faldo, Colin Jackson and Nicki Chapman are just some of the names who have already signed up, with more coming on board by the day.

There's no need to be a sporty person to get involved. Just sign up, get sponsored and be there on Sport Relief Saturday to help change the world by miles.

For more information on Sport Relief and to register for you place at the Mile, visit

Notes to Editors

What is Sport Relief?

Sport Relief was set up by Comic Relief and BBC Sport to use the power and passion of sport to tackle poverty and disadvantage, both in the UK and in some of the world's poorest countries.

What is happening this year?

Fourteen venues up and down the country will host the Fitness First Sport Relief Mile and well-known faces from the world of sport and entertainment will line up alongside the public as the whole nation comes together to 'Go the Extra Mile'.

Sport Relief Saturday concludes with a night of spectacular unmissable TV on BBC ONE.

The Fitness First Sport Relief Mile comes in two distinct flavours with the Time Trial Mile for people who want to set themselves a target and the Freestyle Mile for all those who want more fun and less run by doing it any way they want.

How to get involved with Sport Relief

To book a place or for the information on The Fitness First Sport Relief Mile, visit


For a registration kit call 09068 10 10 10 (calls cost no more than £1 which covers print, postage and packaging) or text "kit" to 84466 (texts will cost no more than 75p, which contributes towards postage and packaging. Please ask bill payer's permission before texting).

Register through any one of the 149 Fitness First health clubs all over the UK.

Buy a Speedo Sport Relief T-shirt for £14.99 from

To make a donation call 08457 910 910 (calls will be charged at local rate).

Where does Sport Relief money go?

Half of the money raised by Sport Relief will be spent in the UK funding projects that make a difference through sport.

The other half will be spent on work trying to help kids who are having really tough lives in some of the poorest countries in the world.

Sport Relief history

Sport Relief made its debut in 2002 and raised a staggering £14.4m.


The first Sport Relief in 2002 saw some seriously big names - David Beckham, Nelson Mandela, Muhammad Ali, Michael Owen and Denise Lewis, to name but a few.

In the UK, Sport Relief '02 cash is levelling the playing field - helping tackle poverty and bringing young people that have been divided by conflict and tension together through sport.

Overseas Sport Relief '02 is helping children like 10-year-old Elisabeth, who lives in Peru.

Elisabeth used to get up at 5.00am every day to work in a quarry making bricks.

Thanks to the money that everyone helped to raise, Elisabeth can now go to school and be a child again.

Sport Relief is an initiative of Comic Relief, registered charity 326568.

Where are the Sport Relief Miles taking place?

Belfast, Ormeau Park Leeds, Roundhay Park
Birmingham, Centenary Square London, Victoria Embankment
Brighton, Preston Park Manchester, Heaton Park
Bristol, Greville Smyth Park Newcastle, Exhibition Park
Cardiff, Black Weir Park Nottingham, Woolatton Park
Edinburgh, Murrayfield Plymouth, Central Park
Ipswich, Chantry Park Southampton, The Common



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Category: Sport Relief
Date: 07.06.2004
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