Controversy as trans athlete wins women's race

By Hong Duy   January 29, 2024 | 07:22 pm PT
The organizers of a trail running event Na'dalt in Spain have announced a temporary adjustment to the results following the victory of a transgender athlete in the women's category.

The controversy started at Na'dalt, a mountain running event at an altitude of 1,246 meters in Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain. The race features a 3.8 km route.

According to Spanish newspaper La Vanguardia, a runner named Quima D won the women's category. This sparked controversy as Quima D, formerly known as Quim Duran, had transitioned from a man into a woman but often registered as a male and competed in that category. In this tournament, she chose to compete in the women's race.

Following the controversy, the organizers temporarily changed the results, declaring Quima D as the neutral winner and promoting Laia Montoya who finished 82 seconds behind Quima D - to the winner of the women's category.

Quima D faced criticism from the audience when receiving the prize from the organizers - a box of meat. The organizers also announced that another prize would be awarded to Montoya.

In an official statement, Na'dalt organizers expressed that they always strive to promote women in sports and aims to show support, unity, and empathy to everyone, regardless of gender.

"The controversy came when a transgender athlete topped the women's category and created a dilemma involving ethical, moral and even personal and scientific point of view," the statement read, adding the incident exceeds the capabilities of an amateur competition like Na'dalt.

Na'dalt organizers stated that while the event is under the jurisdiction of the Federation of Excursionist Entities of Catalonia (FEEC), no members of the FEEC were present on the day of the competition. Therefore, they chose a temporary solution and contacted the FEEC for specific guidance.

"The FEEC is aware of the situation and committed to drafting appropriate regulations for this case and future tournaments. Once the FEEC publishes these regulations, we, as an event under the federation, will apply it to declare the results," said the statement.

Catalonian news outlet 20minutos said Na'dalt's decision to "pass the responsibility" to the FEEC is reasonable, given the ongoing controversy over transgender athletes competing in women's categories in most sports.

The Spanish Weightlifting Federation previously raised their opinion that Gavin Hubbard, a New Zealand athlete who was born a man, competing in the women's category at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics was unfair. Subsequently, the International Olympic Committee admitted that the regulations for transgender athletes competing in women's events were outdated and would be changed after Tokyo 2020.

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