Malaysia PM Mahathir, 94, goes on 11km bicycle ride

A screengrab from a video showing Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad cycling with an entourage of nearly 10 men around parks in Putrajaya and Cyberjaya at the weekend. Tun Dr Mahathir, who is in his second stint as premier, celebrated his 94th
A screengrab from a video showing Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad cycling with an entourage of nearly 10 men around parks in Putrajaya and Cyberjaya at the weekend. Tun Dr Mahathir, who is in his second stint as premier, celebrated his 94th birthday just last month.PHOTO: CHEDET OFFICIAL/YOUTUBE

KUALA LUMPUR • Malaysia's nonagenarian Prime Minister went on an 11km bicycle ride, a feat which set the Internet twittering.

"This morning we had the chance to bike almost 11km. Thank God, it feels fresh and vibrant," 94-year-old Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad posted on his social media accounts last Saturday.

The posts were accompanied by a 23-second video of the outing around parks in administrative capital Putrajaya and science park town Cyberjaya.

Riding a red bicycle while wearing a red and white helmet, the world's oldest head of government was accompanied by an entourage of nearly 10 men on other two-wheelers, including a scooter.

Members of the public could be seen looking on as the group passed.

The post attracted some 9,000 likes across Facebook and Twitter.

"The best Tun beloved by rakyat (people) all," wrote Mr Mohd Raiszudin on Facebook, using a Malaysian honorific.

"May you always ride your bike and go faster to drive the country to the top of success."

Dr Mahathir, who is in his second stint as Malaysian prime minister, celebrated his 94th birthday just last month.

"My birthday wish is very simple - that I can finish my work setting Malaysia on the road of recovery," he wrote on Facebook then. "It is a privilege and honour to serve this country."

At an age when many would prefer to be in the passenger's seat, the sprightly grandfather has also frequently been seen driving various visitors around in Malaysian-made Proton cars.

Just earlier this month, visiting Indonesian President Joko Widodo was taken for a spin.

After official meetings in the prime minister's office, Dr Mahathir drove Mr Joko to lunch at the prime minister's residence some 4km away in a red Proton Persona.

"This was the second time I had the honour of sitting in a car driven by Dr M," Mr Joko wrote on his Facebook page, recounting the first time as being during a visit to Malaysia some four years ago, when Dr Mahathir had invited him for a test drive, also in a Proton.

"The speed was thrilling: It reached 180 km per hour. But today was calmer."

On Sunday, Dr Mahathir was again behind the wheel when he test-drove the Malaysian-made Proton Saga MC 2019.

Dr Mahathir was born on July 10, 1925, in Kampung Seberang Perak, Alor Setar, Kedah state. He is the youngest of nine siblings.

He first became prime minister in 1981 at the age of 56, serving as the country's fourth prime minister. He stepped down from the post in 2003 after being in office for 22 years.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 20, 2019, with the headline 'Mahathir, 94, goes on 11km bicycle ride'. Print Edition | Subscribe