Wrestling is inseparable from the Olympics. The spirit of the Games is as much a celebration of the human achievement through peaceful athletic contests as it is a deep respect and recognition of the history of sport.
There are only a few contests that capture the original vision of the games: competition and history. Wrestling is not only one of the original sports competed in at the modern games but was central to the games in ancient times. Track and field athletics aside, wrestling is the longest most continuously played sport in history! It even pre-dates the ancient Olympics, with records kept from 776BC onwards.
Wrestling has been a part of the modern Olympic Games since it launched in Athens in 1896. Only once, in 1900, has the sport failed to feature, but other than that, it has been a key part of the Games’ structure.
Until 1920, only one form of the sport was included, usually Greco Roman. But since then, both Freestyle and Greco have featured, with freestyle the form of wrestling practised in Great Britain.
In the London 2012 Olympics, British Wrestling fielded its first athlete since the Atlanta 2004 Olympics, and the first ever Team GB female wrestler since the introduction of female wrestling to the Olympics, also in Atlanta.
In May 2013, Wrestling was, for a short while, removed from the Games Programme, but was reinstated in September of that year and will be on the Programme for Rio 2016, Tokyo 2020 and the Games in 2024. (See link for further information).
GBR Wrestling medalling in the Olympics:-
(Freestyle, except where referenced)
|1908||–||William J. Press||–||Bantamweight|
|London||–||James Slim||William McKie||Featherweight|
|11 medals||George de Relwyskow||William Wood||Albert Gingell||Lightweight|
|Stanley Bacon||George de Relwyskow||Frederick Beck||Middleweight|
|Con O’Kelly||–||Edward Barrett||Heavyweight|
|1920||–||–||Philip Bernard||Featherweight *|
|Antwerp||–||–||Peter Wright||Lightweight *|
|* Catch as Catch Can|