Iranian cyclist passes away after crash in Rio Paralympics road race

Bahman Golbarnezhad was taking part in the men's C4/C5 road race

Iranian cyclist passes away after crash in Rio Paralympics road race

Iran's Bahman Golbarnezhad competes in the Men's Road Race C4-5. Picture by: Andrew Matthews / PA Wire/Press Association Images

An Iranian cyclist has died after a crash during a road race at the Paralympics in Rio.

Bahman Golbarnezhad was treated at the scene and then suffered cardiac arrest as he was taken to hospital and later passed away.

The crash took place on a mountainous stretch as he was going down a steep hill during the men's C4-C5 race for athletes with lower limb impairments or amputations.

It is not yet known what caused the incident.

An investigation is taking place after what is believed to be the first death in a Paralympics.

IPC president Philip Craven said: "This is truly heart-breaking news.

"The thoughts and condolences of the whole Paralympic Movement are with Bahman's family, friends, and teammates, as well as the whole of the National Paralympic Committee of Iran."

Carlos Nuzman, head of the Rio Olympic organising committee: "This is very sad news for sport and for the Paralympic movement.

"Our hearts and prayers are with Bahman's family, his teammates and all the people of Iran."

The Iranian flag was lowered to half-mast in the Paralympic Village, and a moment of silence will be held at Sunday's closing ceremony in the Maracana Stadium.

It was the second race in Rio for Golbarnezhad who had finished 14th in a time trial on Wednesday.

The cyclist, who was born in Shiraz, Iran, had also competed at the London Paralympics in 2012.