Gary Ritter

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Gary Ritter was the director of the Elizabeth Virrick Gym at 2610 South Bayshore Drive, in Coconut Grove, Florida in the 1980s.

Ritter was a former amateur boxer and boxing trainer. He is best known for discovering future world cruiserweight champion Robert Daniels. Ritter first noticed Daniels at an inner city project in the Allapattah section of Miami-Dade County. Daniels was only a 9 year old novice amateur, but Ritter saw a "Diamond in the Rough." Within seven years, the 16 year old Daniels became the most feared and respected fighter in the state of Florida.

Ritter also trained a team from the Virrick Gym along with former pro fighters Eddie Ludlow, Florentino Fernandez, and the legendary Kid Gavilan. In 1983, the Virrick Team went 5-5 against the Jamaican amateur team.

Among other standouts Ritter trained were Regional Golden Glove Champion (South Florida) Raymond Negron, and Anthony Atkinson.

In 1981, Ritter trained Miami Beach's Sherman Bergman, a knockout artist with a 17-1 (17 knockouts) record. Bergman faced state welterweight champion Larry Byrd in the semi-finals of the Open Division at the South Florida Regional Golden Glove Boxing Championships. Before 600 screaming fans, Bergman and Byrd put on a slug-fest which resulted in Bergman being decked twice, and stopped in 33 seconds of the first round. Bergman and Ritter parted ways following the fight, and Bergman later launched a career in Kickboxing.

By the mid 1980s, Gary Ritter drifted from the scene and his life since is unknown.

Sources

  • Miami Herald, October 31, 1982, Neighbors, page 27: FRAZIER LOOKALIKE HAS SIMILAR SUCCESS AS AMATEUR BOXER.
  • Miami Herald, January 2, 1983, Neighbors, page 13: WHAT WE'LL SEE DURING 1983.
  • Miami Herald, September 25, 1983, Neighbors, page 41: BOXERS TO MEET JAMAICAN TEAM.
  • Miami Herald, January 5, 1984, Neighbors, page 25: BOXING GYM, CITY SHOULD COOPERATE TO AVOID TAKEOVER.
  • Miami Herald, July 29, 1984, Neighbors, page 22: DREAMS HAVE HIM FIGHTING OFF ROPES.
  • Miami Herald, August 7, 1984, Sports, page 1D: TOUGHEST FIGHT AT PRISON ISN'T IN THE RING.
  • Miami Herald, December 9, 1984, Neighbors, page 30: YOUNG BOXERS GO FOR SILVER AT VIRRICK.