Farmer cycles to London from China on a rickshaw; Chen Guanming, 57, says he undertook the two-year trip to support the athletes and spread the Olympic spirit
London’s Chinatown is hosting an unusual Olympic fan: a farmer who says he has cycled on a rickshaw all the way from China for the Games.
Chen Guanming, 57, says he undertook the two-year trip to support the athletes and spread the Olympic spirit.
He’s also seeking a last-minute ticket to attend Friday’s opening ceremony.
He said that his extraordinary journey began in April 2010 in his village in eastern China's Jiangsu province. Over the next two years, he said he covered 16 countries including Vietnam, Thailand, Pakistan, Turkey andItaly. He arrived in Britain by a ferry from France on 6 July, he said.
His rickshaw, loaded with his possessions, is plastered with pictures of him posing in front of international landmarks like the Eiffel Tower in Paris.
Chen said he had been inspired in 2008 by the London mayor, Boris Johnson, accepting the Olympic flag inside the Bird’s nest stadium in Beijing during the closing ceremony, he told the BBC, which showed footage of his passport full of visas for various countries along his route.
He was denied a visa to Burma so cycled through the mountains of Tibet instead, he said.