80-year-old not slowing down
At the age of 80, Peter Hanson is proving difficult to slow down.
He just returned home from Darwin with four medals around his neck from the Australian Masters Athletics Championships to add to his ever-growing collection.
Hanson flew in six hours before his first event, the 60-metre dash, and was ready to hit the ground running. While he is more of a long-distance runner, he ‘‘was quite proud’’ of crossing the line in second place.
‘‘There were seven in the race, and it was only the world champion that beat me.’’
Later that day he threw an 8.86m in the 3kg shot put to break a Wellington centre record and claim a Masters bronze medal.
‘‘I had been throwing nine metres before I went away but I was feeling a bit stiff that day.’’
Not one to slow down, Hanson then placed second in the 100m later that evening.
‘‘It went pretty good. The guy that beat me was the same fellow who finished ahead of me in the 60 metre race.’’
The next day, the Aotea resident secured gold in his bread and butter event, the 5000m.
‘‘I’m more of a jack of all trades, master of none. That longer race was more of a tactical one. I heard that this guy, who I hadn’t come across before, was a good runner.
‘‘So, I thought ‘well, I’ll just stay behind him and see what happens later on in the race’.’’
After about four or five laps, Hanson’s patience paid off.
‘‘He suddenly stopped, I think he was having trouble with his shoes. Anyway, I went ahead of him and never saw him again until the finish.’’
Hanson uses his active lifestyle as an outlet following the death of his wife Nola 18 months ago, and to connect with friends who supported him at the time.
He walks 20km three times a week, completes a 5km Park Run every Saturday and sees his personal trainer once a week for strength training. ‘‘The born and bred, and thick in head’’ Yorkshireman isn’t shy of showing off his medals.
You might have read about him in the past - as one of New Zealand’s top runners for his age, he has featured several times in the local news over the years.
But his recent achievement only proves one thing - ‘‘I have had my fair share of success and I’ll make sure it continues,’’ Hanson said.
He has now set his sights on Christchurch’s National Road Championships in September, the Oceania Games in January, as well as the New Zealand Championships and Australian Championships again next year.
‘‘There is no fun in just going out for a run. I do it because I like to beat somebody else, when I can.’’
Peter Hanson doesn’t like sitting around for long, and recently came home from the Australian Masters Athletics Championships in Darwin with four medals.