British wrestling history 

R: Rawlinson - Rees


Wrestling Heritage A-Z

Keith Rawlinson
Surely a hero of all us ageing wrestling fans? Do we sympathise or do we celebrate a man who lived his dream? Keith Rawlinson was a Burnley schoolteacher who had his ambition fulfilled in a British television programme by training as a professional wrestler. Months of training from Sid Cooper and Peter Kaye were not enough to save Keith from a good hiding from one of the hardest of the 1970s wrestlers, John Naylor. Keith retired at the end of the fourth round, never to set foot in the wrestling ring again. If you're reading this Keith, do get in touch and tell us your story.

Red Eagle
In September 1962, following in the footsteps of the original Chief Thunderbird and Billy Two Rivers, came another native American. Entering the ring, wearing the standard native American gear, New Mexico’s Chief Red Eagle, arrived in the UK following combat in Australia and the Far East.

Graeme Cameron has told us that the Red Eagle who wrestled in Britain at this time was  Kimo Mahi from Hawaii. Mahi portayed himself as three native Americans  during his career, though worked mostly under his own name. He died on 7th September, 1992, aged just 60.

Red Ivan
Billed in Britain as a Ukrainian with a Polish mother, Red Ivan was brought in as cannon fodder for Big Daddy in one of the more pitiful storylines that the latter days of British wrestling had to offer.  Ivan appeared on television and vastly outweighed his first opponent Andy Blair.  A further demolition job ensued on Burly Barry Douglas, who again gave away over two stones in weight.  Just when Red Ivan seemed to be establishing his reputation as a formidable likely opponent for full blown British heavies such as Davies or Roach or Bartelli he was required to succumb most unbelievably to the out of condition “Mams and Dads Favourite”.  Fans were left wondering about what might have been, and a good showman and fine athlete let his entire reputation go up in smithereens. SaxonWolf has told us "Red Ivan was Richard Krupa, who wrestled under various names, such as Vladimir Krupoff, a Canadian with Russian born parents who had begun his wrestling career for Stu Hart's Stampede Wrestling.

Rudy Redvern

The blond haired tiger from Yorkshire appears to have been around for only a short time, between 1950 and 1952 working for Atholl Oakeley. Appeared in high profile contests at Harringay and other halls that used Oakeley’s Twentieth Century Catch rules. Won Oakeley’s Junior heavyweight championship, a title open to under 25 year olds. Seemingly disappeared when Oakely stopped promoting. Did he assume another wrestling identity?