‘I am an athlete and I just want to race competitively again’: Trans cyclist Emily Bridges speaks out after British Championship ban saying, ‘No one should have to choose between being who they are and participating in the sport they love’
A transgender cyclist said that she just wants to race competitively again, after being told that she was not eligible to participate in upcoming championships.
Emily Bridges, 21, was hoping to race in the British National Omnium Championships tomorrow.
But she was told on Wednesday that she was no longer deemed eligible.
Emily Bridges, 21, was hoping to race in the British National Omnium Championships tomorrow
She made a public statement, saying that ‘No one should have to choose between being who they are, and participating in a sport they love’
‘Despite the public announcement, I still have little clarity around their finding of my ineligibility under their regulations,’ she said in a statement.
‘I am an athlete, and I just want to race competitively again, within the Regulations set by British Cycling and UCI after careful consideration of the research around transgender athletes.
‘No one should have to choose between being who they are, and participating in the sport that they love.’
Ms Bridges has yet to race in the female category and said that she has been judged ‘despite a total lack of evidence against me, purely because I am trans’.
She said that she has requested clarity around her ‘alleged ineligibility’ and hopes that the decision will be reconsidered.
She added: ‘Thank you to everyone who has supported me through this, your messages have meant the world this past 10 days.’
Yesterday, Ms Bridges’ aunt told MailOnline that barring her niece from competing against Olympic hero Dame Laura Kenny and other women is ‘unfair’.
Sharron Davies said: ‘It’s not transphobic to want fair sport – it’s anti-female to not’.
Female riders threatened to pull out of the National Omnium Championships in Derby tomorrow before Miss Bridges was blocked from racing against them because she had competed as a man until a few weeks ago.
Ms Davies, the former Olympic swimming star, accused the sport’s ruling bodies of ‘a blatant fudge’.
She said: ‘I think the very serious threat of a boycott helped hugely to concentrate their minds and cause intervention, but I’m being positive we are turning a corner. Sport is all about fairness there are ways to have inclusion without sacrificing Women’s sport.
‘It would not have been fair to ask Laura Kenny and the other women cyclists that Bridges would have come up against to have to race a rival with the advantages of a biological man.
‘No amount of testosterone reduction can mitigate that, but we’re being told to turn a blind eye to science and biology, to keep quiet and suck it up’.
Source: Read Full Article