Mike Tyson & Lakiha Spicer @ “Taking on Tyson” Premiere in NYC

Photo Credit: Fame Pictures

For all Tyson fans who wanna see a whole new side of the former boxing king, make sure you tune into Animal Planet (no joke) to catch his new show titled “Taking on Tyson,” which debuts Sunday night at 10 p.m. EST. The show will focus on Tyson’s peculiar, yet expensive, passion for pigeon racing & his general love for the birds. If any of you saw the epic 2008 James Toback-documentary “Tyson,” you’ll know that these birds played a very crucial role in his youth & even nudged him into fighting when some poor soul threatened his birds.

For those of you who’re remotely interested, here’s more the art of pigeon racing:

Trainers bring their birds to a central location, sometimes several hundred miles from home, and outfit them with electronic timers. Then the birds are released and fly back to their coop, with the time recorded when they pass through the door. That number is factored into the distance traveled to determine their speed, and the fastest birds are declared the winners.

There is big money in pigeon racing. Breeders spend thousands of dollars on birds, and some competitions award up to $50,000 — not to mention the betting that takes place on the side.

Then there are the bragging rights, and to Tyson, those are more valuable than money.

“Slowly but surely, I’m gaining a name in the business, and I’m very grateful for that as well,” Tyson says. “It’s competitive, but it’s all in love.” [Source]