Ride for Ugo
Fri 01 April 2022, 12:15|Tottenham Hotspur
Laurence Gant, Head of Academy Sports Medicine and Science, sets off next week on a five-day charity cycle in memory of his friend, and our former Under-23s coach, Ugo Ehiogu.
A highly respected former Premier League player, England international and progressive young coach, Ugo suffered a cardiac arrest on 20 April 2017, and passed away in the early hours of the following morning.
This April will see the fifth anniversary of Ugo’s passing and to celebrate his life, over a five-day period, Laurence will cycle between all the football clubs that Ugo played for.
The challenge will see Laurence starting at Glasgow Rangers, and he will then cycle to Middlesbrough, Leeds United, Sheffield United and arrive at Aston Villa on 9 April, ahead of our Premier League match. The final leg of the journey will see Laurence cycle from Villa Park to the Club's training centre, Hotspur Way.
Money raised will go towards leading heart charity, London Hearts, which provides defibrillators and Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) training in local communities. CPR training helps raise awareness of cardiac arrests and gives people the ability and confidence to save lives. By administering CPR, it increases the possibility of surviving cardiac arrest.
Ahead of the cycle, Laurence, and his wife Catherine, who will be joining him on the journey, sat down with Spurs TV to talk about their upcoming challenge, how Ugo was such a role model and inspiration to so many, and why it’s important to keep his legacy alive.
England manager, friend and former team-mate of Ugo, Gareth Southgate, was also on hand to share his memories of Ugo and to show his support to Laurence and Catherine for their incredible tribute.
Anyone who wishes to make a donation, however big or small, can do so via Laurence’s JustGiving page. A text-to-donate service has also been set up - fans can donate by texting RIDE10 to 70450 to donate £10.
Ugo believed in helping others, and in his now famous last tweet, even encouraged people to do #DoSomethingKind, reminding us on the importance of helping those less fortunate.
At this weekend’s home match against Newcastle United, Laurence will be appearing as our half-time guest to speak about his challenge. Fans can also stay up to date with Laurence’s progress throughout by searching #RideForUgo on social media.
Speaking ahead of the ride, Laurence said: “Ugo was a great believer in helping others but also in the power of football. Football is an amazing sport that not only allows people to exercise, but to also join a community providing support and help to others. Through the challenge, I am hoping to raise money to deliver defibrillators and training to grass roots football so we can support people of all ages to play and enjoy football safely.
"If the unimaginable happens, the presence of a defibrillator increases your chance of survival from 6% to 74%. For every £600 raised, we can place a defibrillator in the community. For every pound donated, we can improve safety and the chance of survival, allowing people to participate and enjoy this fantastic sport. Together, we can #DoSomethingKind.”
Jo Lovell, Operations Manager at London Hearts, said: “We are incredibly proud to support Laurence on his momentous challenge. London Hearts is the UK’s largest charity specialising in the procurement and supply of life-saving heart defibrillators. We are extremely grateful to Laurence and his wife Catherine who will be raising funds for London Hearts, with all proceeds going towards providing heart defibrillators across the country. We wish them both the best of luck, and we look forward to greeting them at the finish line!”