Episode 37

Farid Noori: Afghanistan's Olympic Mountain Bike Hopeful

Farid Noori was just 2 years old when his family was forced to flee from Afghanistan due to the Taliban. Growing up, sport wasn't encouraged but education most definitely was. For a number of years, his school was at a compound of UNICEF tents, but despite the surroundings, everyone valued education. Farid first discovered mountain biking when he took part in a High School exchange programme in the USA. He still studies in America and now hopes to become the first mountain biker from Afghanistan to compete at the Olympics.

You'll hear:

  • 05:00 Fleeing from the Taliban when he was 2 years old.
  • 08:00 What it's like going to school in a UNICEF tent
  • 14:00 How he learned to ride a bike in secret when he was in Pakistan
  • 20:00 Getting on a plane for the first time and landing in the US for his High School exchange programme
  • 26:00 discovering the sport of tennis for the first time and deciding to build a court at a girl's school in Afghanistan
  • 33:30 Farid's challenge to try to qualify for the Olympics in mountain biking
  • 35:00 The joy of mountain biking for the first time and questioning why it wasn't a popular sport in Afghanistan
  • 37:25 We can be a nation of Olympic producing athletes and by walking this journey, I want to pave the way for others
  • 39:30 80% of Afghanistan is mountains and they are huge. There are so many unnamed peaks, it's the best playground for bikes
  • 42:50 Although there is more tolerance for women's riding, it's not where I want it to be. It's really hard for women to go out and train.
  • 46:15 As Afghans, we are strangers in our own country and I hope that we can start to love this country because it's a beautiful place.

Find out more about this week's guest

Farid Noori Instagram

Mountain Bike Afghanistan website

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About the Podcast

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Inside Tri Show
Helen Murray brings you awesome interviews from triathlon and beyond

About your host

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Helen Murray

Helen has been working in triathlon for a decade as an athlete, coach and broadcaster.

Helen hosts the Inside Tri Show podcast bringing you awesome interviews from triathlon and beyond