Britain’s Own Lia Thomas | National Review

Britain’s Own Lia Thomas | National Review


Emily (formerly Zach) Bridges prepares to race in stage 5 of the Junior tour of Wales in Abergavenny, United Kingdom, August 26, 2018.
(Huw Fairclough/Getty Images)

A 21-year-old male cyclist, Emily (formerly Zach) Bridges from Wales is set to become Britain’s own Lia Thomas. When competing against his biological sex, Bridges was a promising young cyclist. In 2018, he set a national junior men’s record in the 25-mile race. And he remained in the Great Britain Academy program as a male cyclist until 2020.

In fact, Bridges was still racing men until February of this year. While undergoing testosterone-suppressant treatment, the cyclist won gold and bronze medals at the British University Championships in Glasgow last month. However, since meeting British Cycling’s testosterone requirements for transgender-identifying athletes, Bridges decided to switch over to compete against women. Only, the global governing body for cycling, UCI, intervened just days before the competition was set to take place.

As the Times of London reports:

UCI rules give the governing body six weeks to convene an expert panel after receiving the final blood test and, because ranking points are available at the event, Bridges will have to await the outcome of the deliberations before she can compete in the female category.

This is basically the same approach that USA Swimming took in response to the Lia Thomas controversy, though the NCAA chose not to implement the rule change until 2023.

This “expert panel” is woefully inadequate. And not least because, as parents of female college swimmers wrote in the New York Post earlier this month, sports authorities “are asking the wrong questions.” Indeed, there is no “precise level to which a male body needs to be impaired to compete fairly against women.” A disadvantaged man is not a woman. Suggestions to the contrary are deeply sexist and unjust.

Madeleine Kearns is a staff writer at National Review and a visiting fellow at the Independent Women’s Forum.





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About the Author

Tony Beasley
Tony Beasley writes for the Local News, US and the World Section of ANH.