By John Ensor •
Updated: 26 May 2023 • 13:48
Emily Bridges: banned from women's races.
Credit: Emily bridges/Instagram
The controversial issue of transgender athletes has been addressed by British Cycling after months of deliberation, a move certain to cause heated debate by all those affected.
On Friday, May 26, British Cycling posted its new policy for competitive events, giving much-needed clarity on the subject of transgender athletes.
The new rules state that: ‘The “Female” category will remain in place for those whose sex was assigned female at birth.’
The cycling body plans to create a new ‘Open’ category for, ‘transgender women, transgender men, non-binary individuals and those whose sex was assigned male at birth,’ who will not be allowed to compete in female-categorised competitive events. The ‘Open’ category will be incorporated into the ‘Mens’ events.
However, for non-competitive events the new rules do not apply: ‘The Policy for Non-Competitive Activity builds on our equality, diversity and inclusion strategy, Our Ride, and re-asserts our commitment to inclusion for trans and non-binary riders across our non-competitive activities.
‘This includes our Breeze programme, a women-only community programme, which will continue to remain open and inclusive for transgender women and non-binary people.’
The new policy comes after British Cycling suspended Transgender and Non-Binary Participation Policy back in April 2022, so that they ‘could conduct a full review of the available medical science’ and consultation with relevant groups.
The governing body went on to state its objective: ‘Our aim in creating our policies has always been to advance and promote equality, diversity and inclusion, while at the same time prioritising fairness of competition.’
In conclusion British Cycling CEO, Jon Dutton, said: ‘Our new policies are the product of a robust nine-month review process which we know will have a very real-world impact for our community both now and in the future. We understand that this will be particularly difficult for many of our trans and non-binary riders…’
He later added, ‘we will continue to assess our policy annually and more frequently as the medical science develops, and will continue to invite those impacted to be an integral part of those conversations.’
The news was greeted with fury by top British transgender cyclist Emily Bridges who posted on Instagram: ‘British Cycling has just banned us from racing. . . I’m done with this whole conversation being on their terms, and being controlled by them.
‘They have no authority to control this conversation anymore.’ Emily then went on to lament that she didn’t even know if she wanted to continue racing any longer.
Thank you for taking the time to read this article. Do remember to come back and check The Euro Weekly News website for all your up-to-date local and international news stories and remember, you can also follow us on Facebook and Instagram.
Share this story
Subscribe to our Euro Weekly News alerts to get the latest stories into your inbox!
By signing up, you will create a Euro Weekly News account if you don't already have one. Review our
Originally from Doncaster, Yorkshire, John now lives in Galicia, Northern Spain with his wife Nina.
He is passionate about news, music, cycling and animals.
Download our media pack in either English or Spanish.