A biological male living like a female claimed that his first-place win in a female cycling race is all fair and square despite the fact that he may have a physical advantage. One of the women he pushed to a lower step on the podium disagrees.
College of Charleston assistant professor Rachel McKinnon, who was born a male, beat out all the female cyclists at the 2018 UCI Masters Track Cycling World Championships in Los Angeles earlier this month.
“Sooooo…I’m a WORLD CHAMPION,” he declared on Twitter.
Not everyone praised his victory in a women’s event.
“We cannot have a woman legally recognized as a trans woman in society and not be recognized that way in sports,” McKinnon argued earlier, according to USA Today.
And then he said any sports advantage he might have really doesn’t matter at all in the face of something he sees as vastly more important: trans rights.
“Focusing on performance advantage is largely irrelevant because this is a rights issue. We shouldn’t be worried about trans people taking over the Olympics. We should be worried about their fairness and human rights instead,” he said.
But Houston, Texas cyclists Jennifer Wagner, who took third, does not agree with McKinnon’s view of fairness.
“I was the 3rd place rider. It’s definitely NOT fair,” Wagner wrote on Twitter in reply to a woman congratulating her and the woman who got second for their bravery.
The second-place winner, Carolien van Herrikhuyzen of the Netherlands, defended McKinnon’s win over her, claiming that it was a “honest race under UCI rules.”
“Just because it’s a CURRENT UCI rule doesn’t make it fair or right. And rules can be changed,” Wagner shot back.
McKinnon later claimed his win was not unfair because Wagner has beat him in most of the races they've competed in together.
According to Cycling Weekly, McKinnon is the "first transgender woman to win a cycling world title."