By Le Figaro with AFP
The British Cycling Federation has decided to ban transgender women from women’s events.
The British Cycling Federation will ban transgender women from competing in top-tier women’s events, it said Friday in a statement outlining the new policy which aims to prioritize “equity”.
The body will divide the races into “open” and “women’s” categories. Transgender women and men, non-binary people and men will be able to compete in the “open” category. The female category will be reserved for people born female.
Previous Federation regulations required runners to demonstrate low testosterone levels for 12 months prior to competition in order to compete.
But in April, the Federation had suspended this regulation after a transgender woman, Emily Bridges, wanted to participate in the national omnium championships in the women’s category when she had been declared ineligible by the International Cycling Union (UCI).
Bridges condemned the new policy, calling it a “violent act” and calling the Federation a “failing organization” on social media.
The new policy is the result of nine months of reflection and consultation involving stakeholders, including cyclists, including Team Great Britain.
This research has shown that people who go through puberty as males experience a distinct performance advantage, an advantage that cannot be fully mitigated by testosterone suppression, the Federation explained. “Studies indicate that even with testosterone suppression, transgender women who transition after puberty retain a performance advantage,” the proceeding said.
No date has yet been set for the implementation of the new regulations, with the governing body saying only that it will come before the end of the year.
For its part, the UCI allows transgender women who have experienced male puberty to participate in women’s events if their testosterone levels have been reduced to 2.5 nanomoles per liter in the previous two years.
At the end of 2021, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) gave up establishing uniform guidelines as to the criteria for the participation of intersex and transgender athletes, leaving the hand to the various international federations.
Since then, World Athletics has, for example, decided to exclude transgender people from women’s athletics competitions. The International Swimming Federation has decided to ban people who have had male puberty from participating in women’s competitions.