A Peiper’s Tale
This book is no ordinary sporting biography, for Allan Pieper has written A Peiperâ€™s Tale straight from the heart. His description of his difficult early years, his cycling career and his life when his career finished is remarkably and refreshingly candid..
Peiper was just 16 years old when he took the extraordinary step of leaving his shattered family in Australia and moving to Belgium to become a professional cyclist. In Europe he fought prejudice and deceit, made friends and won races on the way to riding the Tour de France and becoming one of the most respected cyclists of the 1980s. Part of the cycling culture Peiper found revolved around drug-taking, and these issues are discussed with honesty and even an optimism for the future.
Each chapter revolves around one of the many varied and colourful characters he met â€“ men like Jan ‘the Papers’, who gave him his first accommodation in a run-down Ghent boarding house; Peter Post who ruled the Panasonic team with a rod of iron; Eddy Planckaert, the youngest of the Flandrian cycling dynasty; Robert Millar, Britainâ€™s most successful ever stage racer; Sean Yates; Robbie McEwen; Cadel Evans; and the legendary fellow-Aussie, Phil Anderson; and many others.
Itâ€™s all here â€“ cycling from the saddle and now from the team-car, and all the trials and tribulations in between. Peiper talks freely about every aspect of his life, and every aspect of professional cycling. Quite simply, this one of the very finest sporting biographies ever published.
‘Allan Peiper was always a little bit different – an excellent rider who could sometimes pull off a remarkable win and an awesome competitor to have riding against you. However Allan’s life was a lot more complicated than it seemed. His difficult childhood, his struggles when he came to Europe and the traumas he went though after he retired are brought to life in this remarkable biography.’
– Phil Liggett, MBE Cycling broadcaster OLN and ITV
‘You won’t read a more revealing, heart searching and poignant book about a professional cyclist than this one.’
– Luke Evans, Cycling Journalist and Editor
‘I really enjoyed Allan’s book, it brought back so many memories. In those days we were all warriors and explorers going into the unknown. It did seem at times like hostile territory, but hopefully we made the road a little easier for the guys who followed us.’
– Paul Sherwen, Cycling Broadcaster OLN and ITV
‘They were called the “Foreign Legion” – that advance party of English-speaking riders in the early 1980s taking on the Continentals at their own game. It needed dedication and humour to survive, and Allan has both. This book will amuse you, but also provide a unique insight into the life of a pro bike rider.’
– David Duffield, British Eurosport