Transgender cyclist Austin Killips wins UCI event
At the Tour of the Gila in New Mexico, Austin Killips became the first transgender athlete to win a UCI women’s stage race.
On Sunday, the 27-year-old American won stage five, clinching the overall championship as well as the ‘Queen of the Mountains’ jersey for best climber.
After “a week of nonsense on the internet,” she praised her fellow riders for their support, but her victory rekindled the issue regarding transgender athletes competing in female categories. Inga Thompson, a three-time Olympian from the United States, claimed that the UCI, cycling’s worldwide governing body, was “killing off women’s cycling.”
Killips, who began racing in 2019 and also races in cyclocross, won the general classification by one minute and 29 seconds over Mexican rider Marcela Prieto on stage five.
“After a week of nonsense on the internet, I’m especially thankful to everyone in the peloton and sport who continues to affirm that Twitter is not real life,” she wrote on Instagram.
“I adore my teammates and competitors, and I am grateful for every opportunity to learn and grow as a person and athlete on the course.”
“The UCI acknowledges that transgender athletes may wish to compete in accordance with their gender identity,” the UCI said in a statement on Tuesday.