Brits thank Boston sportsman for Olympic success

11.20am: BRITIAN'S gold medal winning Olympians have been thanking a Boston sportsman and former High School teacher for his part in their success.

A member of Boston and District Athletic Club, Dr Steve Peters, 55, is also a member of the cycling team that won 14 medals for Britain at the Beijing Olympics.

Dr Peters, who is a former maths teacher at Boston High School, is the team's psychiatrist, and has been thanked by gold medal winners such as Victoria Pendleton and Bradley Wiggins for his support in their campaigns.

He told The Standard his role is about preparing the athletes – as well as the coaches and other support staff – for the mental side of the battle, helping them towards 'complete control of their emotions'.

"My job is to make sure, as human beings, they work optimally," he said.

"Jamie Staff (who helped Britain to a gold medal in the team sprint event) described me as the glue of British cycling, and I think that's fair.

"My role is to hold people together," he said. "I don't coach; I support the coaches so they are able to perform to the full extent."

Dr Peters said the medal haul at Beijing was 'rewarding', but was keen to stress he was only part of a team, despite the praise being heaped on him by the medal winning athletes.

He is no stranger to sporting success, however, for he holds world records at 100m, 200m, and 400m sprints for the 50-plus age group.

His skills and experience has put him in great demand. As well as being a fulltime member of the Great Britain Cycling Team, he is heavily involved with British taekwondo, and also supported the national rugby team ahead of last year's World Cup campaign. He spends most of his time in Manchester, but is currently in Beijing with Britain's Paralympics' cyclers.

"It's a privilege to do the work," he said. "I really enjoy helping people, helping them to perform, and to do their best work."

It is a role not too dissimilar to that which he held for four years as a teacher at Boston High School from 1978. He remembers this time fondly.

"It was a great time in my life," he said. "I loved teaching at the High School, and I often think of the girls and wonder where they are now."

Jamie Staff, in an article published on the British Cycling website during the Beijing Olympics, said: "Steve gives us the know-how to control our thoughts and throw out any negativity which may hinder our performance. People have to remember that although we have trained our bodies to perform at the highest level, we're only human. Steve helps us train our minds, because at the end of the day, it's your mind and your ability to control your thoughts that makes you a Champion."