US Olympic wrestling champion gets to grips with Yorkshire

12 September 2011

A US Olympic wrestling champion got to grips with a York Viking as part of a whirlwind tour of Yorkshire this weekend.

Henry Cejudo, from Colorado, took in the breathtaking Brimham Rocks before grappling with some of the county’s famous tea at Bettys tearooms in Harrogate – where he also met Team GB Olympic hopefuls Caitlin Chang (Fencer – Harrogate), Jack Laugher (Diver – Harrogate/Ripon) and Luke Campbell (Boxer – Hull).

Cejudo, who won an Olympic gold medal at the Beijing Games, then headed back in time to go head-to-head with one of York’s famous Vikings from the JORVIK Viking Centre – the perfect way of honing his skills ahead of next year’s London 2012 Olympic Games.

Henry Cejudo (right) gets to grips with Jorvik’s viking Lee Gemmill (left) as part of his trip to YorkshireHenry Cejudo (right) gets to grips with Jorvik’s viking Lee Gemmill (left) as part of his trip to Yorkshire.


His stop off in the county has been supported by Welcome to Yorkshire in partnership with Visit Britain and the U.S. Olympic Committee, which have been hosting Team USA athletes visiting different parts of the UK including Yorkshire.

Gary Verity, Chief Executive Welcome to Yorkshire, said:

Yorkshire has already got a big slice of the Olympic pie after securing a number of leading national teams to set up training camps across the county.

So it’s fantastic to be able to rollout the famous Yorkshire welcome to Henry and we are sure his visit is one that he will remember for many years. We hope he enjoyed the tea at Bettys and that his grapple with one of our York Vikings won’t affect his chances at next year’s games! Hopefully he’ll be flying the flag for Yorkshire as a must-see destination for Americans when visiting the UK.

Henry said:

I’ve really enjoyed my visit to Yorkshire. There was so much to see and do here, and I never fully realized the rich history and culture of the county. As a part of this Team USA: Britain Bound trip, I’ve seen the beautiful countryside and tried new and amazing things. The experiences will stick with me as I train and prepare for the London 2012 Games. I truly look forward to coming back to Britain next summer!

The trip was all part of Team USA: Britain Bound. The program sent seven U.S. Olympic and Paralympic champions to explore Britain as they prepare for the 2012 Games.

Visit Britain and Welcome to Yorkshire are playing key roles in helping make sure the tourism benefits of the Olympic Games next year are felt right across the country.

For more information on visiting Yorkshire see

All of the US athletes’ journeys are shared at

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