Saddle-sore Peter getting back on bike

Councillor Peter Price, aged 75 who is set to cycle across Central America next month.''1 October 2013'Image � Paul David Drabble'
Councillor Peter Price, aged 75 who is set to cycle across Central America next month.''1 October 2013'Image � Paul David Drabble'
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Councillor Peter Price, 75 years old, proud owner of one knee implant, has just got back to Sheffield after cycling 160 miles in two days.

“My arse is red raw,” he tells The Diary in the austere surroundings of the Town Hall. “It chafes like Hell.”

Clearly, here is a man who doesn’t believe in ‘too much information’.

But if he’s feeling a touch achy around the unfortunates now, it’s probably nothing compared to how he’ll be next month. For, then, Councillor Price is – at an age when walking to the car would be considered exercise for most of us – set to cycle 300 miles across Central America.

“Am I looking forward to it?” ponders the grandfather-of-nine and father-of-four as he continually shuffles in his seat. “I am. I don’t think my backside is.

The challenge – in which he will pass through Panama, Costa Rica and Nicaragua in just six days – is the seventh such ride he will have done in 13 years, all in aid of Macmillan Cancer Support. Previous treks have taken him to China, Vietnam and Mexico. He started when wife Janet passed away in 2000 aged just 59 after being diagnosed with cancer.

“How do I stay so fit?” wonders the retired Sheffield University technician who is the city’s longest serving councillor, having been a Labour member since 1972. “I just keep telling my body to have it, and try not to listen when it screams back at me to stop. I thought when I had my knee implant that would put an end to these sorts of things but it’s given me a new lease of life if anything.

“I try and cycle to Castleton and back four or five times a month. That’s about 40 miles but there are a couple of serious hills.”

And that 160 miles he’s just completed – between Manchester and Wrexham – was the start of his training regime for the Cental American challenge.

“I remember in Mexico a couple of years ago,” says Peter, who lives in Sheffield Lane Top, represents city’s Shiregreen and Brightside ward and is chairman of Sheffield Pensioners Action Group. “I had these young guys telling me they’d look after me. ‘Stick with us, old man, you’ll be all right.’ Then they all shot off. I passed them later. They’d all gone too fast too soon in the heat and ended up getting a lift in a truck.”

It probably helps he’s been on bikes since before he can remember. He pulls out a picture.

“That’s me in on my parents tandem when I was six months,” he says. “Seventy-five years later I’m still on a bike.”

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