Elite ITU triathlete Mohamad Alsabbagh competes for the Syrian national team but is proud to call Canada home. He moved here in 2010 to continue his studies and train at the highest level with the dream of one day racing in the Olympic Games. The tumultuous political situation in Syria has had a deep impact on Alsabbagh. He has watched his country crumble and lost friends and loved ones in recent years. The region has also all but lost its sporting community as a result of the conflict.

“Training (in Syria)… isn’t always safe there,” he says. “Sadly, less people are training. But there are people who are still trying.”

Over the coming weeks, TMC is presenting a six-part video series profiling Alsabbagh. In this second video, he talks about his early start in the sport back in Syria and what keeps him going. Watch the first video here.

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