British Cycling bans transgender women from competing in elite women’s races
Transgender women have been banned from competing in elite cycling races in the UK under a new policy released by the sports governing body on Friday.
Under a new transgender and non-binary participation policy due to be implemented this year, UK cycle races will be split into ‘open’ and ‘female’ categories.
The current men’s category will be consolidated into the “open” category, which is also available for transgender women, transgender men and non-binary cyclists.
The female category will remain for those whose sex was assigned female at birth as well as transgender men who have not yet started hormone therapy.
The policy follows a nine-month review by British Cycling, which included consultation with riders and stakeholders and a review of available medical research conducted by British Cycling’s chief medical officer, Dr Nigel Jones.
The research concluded that riders who have gone through puberty as males have a clear performative advantage that cannot be fully mitigated by testosterone suppression.
British Cycling has yet to confirm exactly when the new policy will come into effect. It will start before the end of the year, the organization said, as it discusses the rule with the International Cycling Union. [UCI] — the governing body of the world of cycling — which has a different policy.
Currently, the UCI allows transgender women who have gone through male puberty to compete in elite women’s events if they have had a reduced testosterone level of 2.5 nanomoles per liter in the previous two years.
The UCI is reportedly reviewing its rules after transgender rider Austin Killups won the women’s Tour of the Gila race in New Mexico earlier this month.
Last April, British Cycling suspended its previous participation policy after transgender woman Emily Bridges sought to compete in the national omnium championships as a rider.
Bridges described the move as a “violent act”.
“I agree that there needs to be a nuanced policy discussion and continue to do research, but that hasn’t happened,” she told The Associated Press.
Jon Dutton, chief executive of British Cycling, has apologized for the anxiety caused during the 13-month limbo since the previous policy was suspended.
This previous transgender policy required cyclists competing in women’s events to show their testosterone levels were below five nanomoles per liter for 12 months before an event.
“It’s an incredibly emotional and sometimes divisive topic,” said Dutton, who has led the governing body for just a month.
“We took several months to look at three areas: first, a consultation with the athletes affected and the wider cycling community; second, to review the medical research available at this point; and thirdly from a legal perspective in terms of association with equality law.
“We made a decision on the balance of the three to provide clarity, direction and that clear path for all athletes involved.”
With post son
New York Post