Sponsorship Deal Gives Grantham Judo Star A Fighting Chance of Olympic Success
Tuesday, 17 March 2020
A rising judo star from Grantham, who hopes to strike gold at the Olympics one day, has moved a step closer to achieving his dream after securing funding to ramp up his training.
Armandas Jursys (15) started training at UFC Gym in Nottingham, which specialises in mixed martial arts (MMA), after Grantham-based engineering firm BGB stepped in to cover the cost of his membership.
During his first tour of the gym, the excited Bluecoat Meres Academy pupil said:
"This is a really good opportunity for me to work on my goals and take my training up to the next level.”
Armandas – whose hero is mixed martial artist Khabib Nurmagomedov – started judo and karate at the age of five-years-old in his native Lithuania.
Having developed a passion for judo at a young age, the active youngster poured all his energy into training despite moving to Spain and back to Lithuania, before settling in the UK.
Now he trains four or five times a week with Vale Judo Club in Oakham and has won gold at national tournaments. He also watches YouTube videos avidly as he continues to hone his technique.
Joining Armandas and his PE teacher Alastair Weir for the gym tour was James Tupper, marketing manager at BGB, who presented the young athlete with the first instalment of funding.
"We are really pleased to be supporting this talented and highly-motivated young man on his journey towards Olympic success and then on to becoming a professional UFC (Ultimate Fighting Championship) fighter.
"BGB is covering the cost of his membership, which includes weekly strength and conditioning classes to complement the one-to-one coaching that UFC Gym is providing free-of-charge. I am a martial arts fan myself, so I’ll be following Armandas’ progress with great interest.
"He is really driven and his enthusiasm for the sport is clear for anyone to see – he’s a real credit to his school.”
Alastair got in touch with BGB, which develops rotary solutions for wind turbines and other mechanical applications, because of its long-standing connection with the school.
"BGB is a well-respected local employer and close to us geographically, so I thought they might want to help. We had no idea that James and the CEO David Holt are passionate about MMA too.
"The donation will enable Armandas to develop his skills, strength and fitness even further, so he can win more national tournaments and compete internationally.”
For more details on BGB, visit www.bgbinnovation.com.
Left to right: Richard Purves (UFC Gym), Armandas Jursys and James Tupper (BGB)
Left to right: Rikki Jeffrey (UFC Gym), Alastair Weir (Bluecoat Meres Academy), James Tupper (BGB), Armandas Jursys and Richard Purves (UFC Gym)