CeCe Telfer, a transgender individual identifying as a female who won the women’s 400-meter hurdles at the NCAA Division II Outdoor Track and Field Championships last month, denies being a biological male is an advantage.
In an interview published Monday with Outsports, SB Nation’s LGBT sports website, Telfer argued being a biological man is at times a disadvantage, specifically in the 100-meter hurdles.
“First of all, my height, how tall I am, is a disadvantage, because the wind is hitting us so hard and the taller you are, the harder you fall, basically,” the senior, who is over six-feet-tall, said. “There’s wind resistance.”
Telfer initially competed as a male at Franklin Pierce University under the name Craig before joining the women’s team this season.
Although Telfer never won a national championship competing against men, the runner said the differences between the men’s and women’s competitions advantage biological women.
“The fact that the hurdles are so close,” Telfer said.
CeCe Telfer (middle) competed as a man last year, became a Transgender, and now competes in NCAA women’s track. Tell me again why using steroids in sports is illegal. pic.twitter.com/lBeqfS2HKv
— America’s Highest Paid Marketing Consultant (@MikeVonIrvin) May 26, 2019
Each hurdle in the NCAA women’s 100-meter event is about a half-meter closer together than in men’s track, according to Outsports, though they are also six inches shorter.
“And there are people who say I have the benefit of testosterone,” Telfer told Outsports. “But no: I have no benefit. I’m on hormone suppression, it doesn’t help. It’s another disadvantage. Cis women are producing more testosterone than the average trans female.”
While it is true trans women must lower their testosterone levels to compete against biological women, the notion that Telfer has no advantage is inaccurate.
The NCAA’s policy when it comes to male-to-female transgender athletes is vague.
According to LetsRun.com, such athletes must take “one calendar year of testosterone suppression treatment” before competing with biological women.
However, no specific testosterone level is given for who is and is not allowed to compete.
It’s also worth noting most of the time Telfer has spent training has been as a biological male with higher testosterone levels than women.
According to LifeZette, biological men have 10 times the testosterone as the average woman.
Men, on average, also have significantly more muscle than women.
“The average man also has 26.4 more pounds of muscle than the average woman (72.6 vs. 46.2), 40 percent more muscle in the upper body, and 33 percent more in the lower body,” LifeZette reported in 2018, citing the Journal of Applied Physiology.
As National Review pointed out in February, Florence Griffith Joyner holds the women’s world record in the 100-meter dash (10.49 seconds).
Even so, her time would not have qualified to run in the 2016 Summer Olympics as a man in the same event (10.16 seconds or less).
It’s not Telfer’s fault the NCAA has the policy it does, but the national title the runner now holds highlights the problem.
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