The inspiring journey of Manan Hasan Wani: A young cyclist from Kashmir

Manan Hasan Wani, a 20-year-old cyclist from Sopore, is an embodiment of determination and perseverance. Despite the challenges posed by his financial circumstances, he has won more than 35 medals in cycle racing events at both district and national levels. His passion and dedication to cycling have made him one of the finest cyclists from Kashmir. His journey began in 2010 when he was in the 8th grade at Muslim Educational Trust (MET) in Sopore. He participated in a district-level racing competition sponsored by the Amateur Cycle Association, where his school secured the second position. The experience of winning a trophy and a certificate fueled Manan’s dreams and solidified his commitment to cycling. Despite facing significant financial hurdles, his determination never wavered. He managed to buy a nearly new racing cycle for fifty thousand rupees, a substantial sum for his middle-class family. His mother, the pillar of support after his father’s death from a kidney ailment, sold her ornaments and some utensils to afford the cycle. Manan’s potential caught the attention of the Amateur Cycle Association, which sought to support and guide him to become a national and international cyclist. Unfortunately, his school did not take the association’s offer seriously, causing him to miss a golden opportunity for professional training. Despite this setback, Manan continued to excel in cycling events across the country, including in Karnataka, New Delhi, Jammu, and Punjab. He achieved remarkable success with his ordinary cycle, earning numerous awards and certificates. His family, though proud of his accomplishments, struggled to afford a professional road bike that could enhance his performance further. A significant milestone in his journey came when he was selected for a cycling competition organised by the University of Kashmir. Promised a professional cycle by his principal if he secured a gold medal, Manan delivered on his part by winning the gold. However, the principal reneged on his promise, citing a scarcity of funds, and instead awarded him ten thousand rupees—a sum insufficient to buy a professional racing bike costing over 1.7 lakh rupees. Disheartened, Manan left the college and enrolled in Government College Baramulla, where he continued to win medals, including three bronze and one silver at the University of Kashmir in 2017. His story, filled with triumphs and trials, is an inspiration to many aspiring cyclists. His unwavering determination and desire to be the best, despite financial constraints, make him a real-life hero. His journey underscores the importance of support and opportunities for talented individuals, highlighting the need for adequate resources to help them realize their full potential. Manan’s resolve to continue his pursuit of excellence in cycling remains undeterred, making his story a beacon of hope and motivation for others.

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