A million miles of inspiration

From The Guardian – ‘An 82-year-old cyclist has completed his one millionth mile riding on a bike. Russ Mantle, from Aldershot in Hampshire, was greeted with cheers as he reached the milestone. The retired carpenter and joiner has kept a meticulous log of all his rides since 1952, completing an average of 14,700 miles a year.

Mr Mantle said he had no plans to stop cycling and believed he could clock up another million miles before he died. His feat is the equivalent of travelling to the moon and back twice or circumnavigating the Earth 40 times. Mr Mantle has been keeping a meticulous log of his mileage since 1952. He has kept a paper diary detailing his mileage, as well as the results of his many race wins when he competed in time trials between 1953 and 1975.

Mr Mantle continued to ride following his retirement from racing, joining several cycling groups and taking his bike across the US, Canada and Europe.Following the finish of his latest ride in Mytchett, Surrey, he said he felt “the same as usual” and described the achievement as “just another milestone”. He added: “I went through 700,000, then 800,000 and so on, it’s another milestone to pass a million, to go on to 1.1, 1.2, and so on.

“I will probably finish up very close to two million by the time I die when I am 100.”

Cycling UK chief executive Paul Tuohy said: “Cycling a million miles is not only incredible, it’s almost incomprehensible. Russ never set out to break any records, cycling is simply a part of his life. Russ is an inspiration and he shows us all what is possible.“‘