Fea­tured Let­ter

Australian Geographic - - Your Say -

The ar­ti­cle about the his­tory of the push­bike in Aus­tralia ( Free­dom of the road, AG 130) re­minded me of a story my fa­ther told me. The cham­pion bike rider of his time, Hu­bert Op­per­man, af­fec­tion­ately known as ‘Oppy’, was backed by the equally fa­mous en­tre­pre­neur Bruce Small, cre­ator of the pop­u­lar Malvern Star, a bike I even­tu­ally owned. Dad was stand­ing by a gravel and dirt road wait­ing and watch­ing for Oppy, who was on his way to Syd­ney from Mel­bourne. When he came into view, he was rid­ing doggedly with grit­ted teeth shin­ing through a de­ter­mined, dirt-cov­ered face on his one-geared bike. He was on his way to cre­ate a record that took decades to break (and only then by multi-geared, light­weight bikes on sealed roads), an amaz­ing and re­mark­able achieve­ment by Oppy at that time. One would think that a man of Oppy’s sta­tus would have de­served a film about his life, con­sid­er­ing he be­came a politi­cian, Min­is­ter for Sport and was even knighted – truly an icon of Aus­tralia. M.O. MA­SON, MEADOW SPRINGS, WA

Hu­bert Op­per­man, one of Aus­tralia’s sport­ing leg­ends.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.