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Saturday 13 July, 2024
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Austin Killips trans cyclist wins North Carolina race

BY Salman Ahmed Jun 12, 2023. 10:35 pm UPDATED: Jun 12, 2023. 10:35 pm

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Austin Killips, a controversial transgender cyclist, won a race in North Carolina by a huge margin of five minutes, prompting the runner-up to claim that her ability was “not comparable” and call for a special category for trans athletes.

Austin Killips, 27, who just recently made history by becoming the first openly transgender woman to win a UCI stage race, took home $5,000 after easily winning the 131-mile Belgian Waffle Ride in Hendersonville on Saturday, according to Cycling News.

In the women’s competition, Killips, who self-identifies as female, quickly claimed the lead before Paige Onweller momentarily passed her.

In the end, Killips took the lead and outlasted her by five minutes.

Flavia Oliveira finished third.

Martina Navratilova, a legendary tennis player who recently attacked Killips for winning a race in New Mexico, tweeted in response to the most recent victory, “What a joke.”

Austin Killips

In a post-race interview, Killips described the “grueling effort” to emerge victorious.

“I am just really proud to lay it out there and get the result. I asserted myself and was able to get a gap early,” she said.

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“We were kind of all riding together for quite a while and, you know, I have a cross background and I am going to attack these single-track sections as hard as I can and did that. I hammered [it] and was able to stay clear,” Killips added.

Onweller offered a diplomatic description of the race.

“Most of the day it was riding the top three women who were together, me, Flavia and Austin. But yeah, I just kind of couldn’t match, you know, Austin and some of the single track and the power … just not comparable,” she said in an interview after the event.

“So kinda got gapped maybe 50 miles from there was kind of alone a lot of the time. Had a couple guys ride with and yeah, it’s kind of settled in and kept motoring and yeah, I got second,” Onweller said.

Nevertheless, she said in a blog post that she wished “to address the various complaints surrounding the women’s podium at this event.

“A transgender athlete won the women’s overall, which has caused some controversy. For those following women’s road cycling, you are aware of the UCI rule that this is currently allowed,” Onweller wrote.

“Rather than sharing my personal opinions about the UCI rule, I think it’s most important to recognize that all athletes, no matter how they identify, should have a space to compete and race. Additionally, underneath all helmets is a face and a person who deserves respect, dignity and a safe space to ride bikes,” she continued.

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