Controversial weightlifter to make Olympic debut
New Zealand weightlifter Laurel Hubbard will make her Olympic debut under the newly-approved IOC guidelines.
It means Hubbard will be the first transgender woman to compete at the Olympics in the women’s weightlifting at the Tokyo International Forum tomorrow.
Hubbard, aged 43, was born male and competed in the men’s weightlifting circuit under the name Gaven Hubbard before undergoing a transition at the age of 35.
Current International Olympic Committee guidelines require athletes who have undergone a gender transition to demonstrate a reduced testosterone levels.
Current rules require levels to remain under 10 nanomoles per litre for more than a year before competing.
But some experts say the limit is much higher than the natural levels in women, which are usually between one and five.
Luke Grant spoke to host of Sportzone and the Continuous Call Team, James Willis, about the controversial rules.
He says the precedent creates an unfair advantage.
“If this is the start, do we really want the Olympic Games and sport in years to come to have athletes that win gold medals, break world records… who may have transitioned from a man to a woman that discourages and disadvantages the rest of the field as a result?” he said.
“In my mind as a massive sports fan, I don’t want that.”
Click play below to listen to the full interview.