A biologically male marathon runner who identifies as a transgender woman is set to compete in the USA Olympic trials later this month.
Megan Youngren “is set to make history on Feb. 29 as the first openly transgender athlete to compete at the U.S. Olympic marathon trials,” Sports Illustrated reported.
Youngren qualified for the trials after a strong performance Dec. 8 in the California International Marathon.
“People will try to put it down by saying, ‘That’s too easy because you’re trans.’ But what about the 500 other women who will qualify? There’s probably someone with the exact same story. I trained hard. I got lucky. I dodged injuries. I raced a lot, and it worked out for me. That’s the story for a lot of other people, too,” Youngren told the magazine.
Megan Youngren is set to become the first transgender athlete to compete at the U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials https://t.co/myPtFcn11T
— Sports Illustrated (@SInow) February 13, 2020
The International Olympic Committee requires transgender athletes in women’s sports to keep their testosterone levels below a certain threshold, but scientific research suggests that suppressing testosterone isn’t enough to neutralize male athletes’ inherent physiological advantages.
June Eastwood, a biologically male runner at the University of Montana who identifies as transgender, was named the Big Sky Conference’s female athlete of the week in October.
Eastwood previously competed on the university’s men’s cross country team.
Like Eastwood, Telfer previously competed on the men’s team before switching genders.
Former U.S. Olympic athlete Rebecca Dussault told The Daily Caller News Foundation in September that allowing biological males into female sports will have disastrous effects on female athletes.
“Once a male body has gone through puberty, they have received the benefits. So the skeletal form, lung capacity, muscle density, the greater length of levers in their body, their muscle-to-weight ratio, their capacity to deal with dehydration much better, narrower hips, I mean you name it — they are physiologically designed differently than women,” she said.
“We invest so much money into keeping sports fair, and this blows the cap off of it,” she added. “Every woman’s record in sports will fall.”
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