A 36-year-old biological male dominated the women’s division of the El Tour de Tucson last weekend, an annual cycling competition in Arizona that attracts thousands of amateur and professional cyclists.
Jillian Bearden — who identifies as a transgender woman — won the 106-mile race in 4 hours and 36 minutes, the Arizona Daily Star reported.
Bearden finished approximately 25 minutes behind former Mexican Olympian cyclist Hugo Rangel, who took home first place in the men’s division.
“It’s absolutely huge,” Bearden told the Daily Star, referring to his victory. “We’re at a moment of time — especially now — where not only do we have to come out but we have to be positive. We have to come together in solidarity and move this country in a direction that is accepting of all.”
Bearden’s victory is just the latest example of what critics say is an unfair advantage biological men have when competing in women’s athletic events.
In June, Alaskan high school girls felt cheated after teenage male Nattaphon Wangyot took home all-state honors in girls’ track and field. (RELATED: High School Boy Wins All-State Honors In Girls’ Track And Field)
Wangyot identified as a transgender teenage girl.
“I’m glad that this person is comfortable with who they are and they’re able to be happy in who they are, but I don’t think it’s competitively completely 100-percent fair,” one of Wangyot’s defeated female competitors said at the time.
The International Olympics Committee recently changed its ruled to allow biological men to compete as women without first undergoing a sex-change operation. (RELATED: Report: 2 British Men Competed As Women In Rio Olympics)