Male NCAA Transgender Sprinter Wins Female Championship

By Victor Westerkamp

NCAA track star CeCe Telfer is making waves by setting new women’s athletic records for Franklin Pierce University. But just last year, Telfer competed for the same school, in the same division—as a man.

Telfer, who competed only last year as Craig Telfer with other men, now identifies as a woman and decided to join the women’s competition.

She cleaned up last Sunday at Smith College, taking home three Northeast-10 Conference titles and scoring 31.5 of the school’s 49.5 points. Franklin Pierce University achieved its highest score at the NE10 Championships ever by finishing 6th.

“The Ravens posted a 49.5-point day on Sunday, and Telfer took care of 31.5 of those herself. She claimed 10 points apiece for the crimson and grey by winning the NE10 titles in the 60-meter dash, the 200-meter dash, and the 60-meter hurdles,” boasted FPU on its website.

Telfer’s achievements sparked concern from groups opposed to biological men competing in women’s athletic events, such as “Save Women’s Sports.”

According to the NCAA Transgender Handbook [pdf]. “The assumption that a transgender woman competing on a women’s team would have a competitive advantage outside the range of performance and competitive advantage or disadvantage that already exists among female athletes is not supported by evidence.”

Therefore, under NCAA bylaws it is legal for a man to compete with women if he has suppressed his testosterone levels for one year. In addition, it states, “it is important not to overgeneralize.”

Tennis player Martina Navratilova, who opposes allowing trans players to compete against biologically female athletes, speaks onstage at the FORTUNE Most Powerful Women Summit on October 16, 2013, in Washington, DC. (Paul Morigi/Fortune/Getty Images)

Former tennis player and nine-fold Wimbledon winner, Martina Navratilova, has called transgender male athletes competing as women “insane” and “cheating,” which was labeled as transphobic. She later posted an apology on her website.

After the USA Powerlifting association announced last January that male lifters who identify as transgender women aren’t allowed to compete as women, Democratic Minnesota Rep. Ilhan Omar called for an investigation into the alleged “discriminatory behavior” of the association. She did so on behalf of Jaycee Cooper, a male powerlifter in Omar’s district who identifies as a transgender woman.

She called it a “myth” that men who identify as transgender women have a “direct competitive advantage.”

A biologically male college professor who identifies as a transgender woman, Rachel McKinnon, won the women’s UCI Masters Track Cycling World Championships in Los Angeles last year.

USA Today quoted McKinnon in January 2018 arguing it’s nonsense to demand from males to suppress testosterone as a prerequisite for competing against women.

“We cannot have a woman legally recognized as a trans woman in society, and not be recognized that way in sports,” McKinnon told USA Today. “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.”