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Faranak Partoazar

Mountain Bike (MTB) Rider, Iran

Born in Shiraz, Iran, Faranak’s story to begin cycling and follow her passion is an unusual one. As a girl born in a traditional society, she fought passionately to be able to ride freely, and her determination and persistence ensured that she overcame those expectations to become a professional rider in 2014, competing with the Iran national team. Since then she has won every national title and race in Iran and has competed internationally. She also became the first ever female Iranian cyclist to medal at the Asian championships. She is ranked as the number one female Asian rider.

 

What is your favourite sport? Mountain biking!
What drives you? I have seen many people live life with regrets of not following their dreams and takins risks.  I know I’ve got one chance of living so I don’t want to regret not achieving my dreams.  Sport also makes me a better person!
What was your defining moment to get to where you are now? A crash when I first starting riding…it was supposed to be the end for my cycling.  But I didn’t want to be victim of circumstances anymore.  And I turned it around and came back as a champion, gold medalist, and the most honored women rider in the history of Iran.  Subsequently, I’ve been able to encourage many women into cycling across my country.
What is your first sporting memory? I had my first race with borrowed equipment and, for the first time in my life, I fought for something without being ashamed!
Who is your inspirational woman in sport? There are many because all top athletes have overcome some really bad situations in their life and are inspiring.  But some touch my heart more because their story is close to mine.  I really like Serena Williams and Lindsay Vonn.
Why is sport important? I do believe sport can improve everyone’s quality of life and has a great power, away from politics, to unite human beings.  Also, sport can help women and girls believe in themselves and be confident, successful and powerful on this earth.