Transgender Cyclist Austin Killips Speaks Out on UCI Policy Change:
Austin Killips, the first openly transgender female cyclist to win an official Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) stage race, has spoken out against the governing body’s new policies regarding transgender participation in women’s events. The UCI recently announced that transgender cyclists who transitioned after male puberty would be barred from competing in women’s events and instead allowed to participate in an open category.
Expressing her disappointment on Instagram and her SubStack, Killips lamented the UCI’s decision and its impact on inclusivity in the sport. She emphasized that everyone should have the opportunity to experience the same joy and fulfillment she has found through racing.
In her SubStack post, Killips attributed the policy change to a “cabal of right wingers” who opposed inclusion in women’s sports for transgender individuals. She acknowledged the complexities of the situation and how her success as a transgender athlete had become a focal point for those who sought to impede progress.
Killips recognized that the fight for inclusion in sports extends far beyond her own aspirations. She emphasized the need to rectify the injustice that has been perpetuated and to advocate for future individuals who aspire to race professionally. Killips acknowledged the efforts of those who fought tirelessly to make her journey possible and vowed to continue fighting for others who deserve the same opportunities.
Earlier this year, Killips gained national attention after winning the Tour of the Gila, which led to scrutiny of the UCI’s transgender participation rules. The UCI initially defended its position before reversing its stance. Killips went on to win the Belgian Waffle Ride, where organizers subsequently changed their policy to introduce an open category.
The UCI’s decision to alter its policy followed a meeting on July 5, during which the governing body concluded that the current scientific knowledge cannot guarantee the elimination of any physical advantage obtained through hormone therapy treatments. Under the new rules, those who do not meet the guidelines for the women’s category will compete in the men’s category, which will now be renamed “Men/Open.”
Despite her personal accomplishments, Killips remains committed to fighting for what is right and ensuring that others have equal opportunities in the sport she loves.