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(LifeSiteNews) — A man who claims to be a woman has placed first in the women’s category of the Tour of the Gila cycling event after his inclusion in the category prompted an actual top female cyclist to retire.

Austin Killips placed third with a time of 3 hours, 7 minutes, 16 seconds, besting competitors Marcela Prieto and Cassandra Nelson in the almost-66-mile race, Cycling News reported.

“We really wanted to get into a break,” said Julie Kuliecza, director of Killips’ team, the Amy D. Foundation. “We thought that there was going to be something that would go right after the second sprint point, and we wanted a rider in that break so that when Austin and the other GC riders came up to it, Austin would have someone to help them and protect them, and it worked out perfectly.”

Tour of the Gila competition director Michael Engleman appeared to walk a diplomatic tightrope in a post-race interview, suggesting they were “glad” to abide by the rules dictated by the sport’s governing bodies (USA Cycling and the Union Cycliste Internationale) while also noting that unlike himself, those bodies could stay behind a “brick wall” shielding them from criticism for those decisions.

As previously covered by LifeSiteNews, Killips being allowed to participate in women’s cycling contests prompted 35-time U.S. cyclocross champion Hannah Arensman to announce the choice to end her career in an amicus brief filed with the U.S. Supreme Court asking to vacate a lower court’s preliminary injunction against a West Virginia law banning student-athletes from competing on opposite-sex teams.

Killips beat Arensman for third place in the USA Cycling Cyclocross National Championships in Connecticut last December.

“Over the past few years, I have had to race directly with male cyclists in women’s events,” she wrote. “As this has become more of a reality, it has become increasingly discouraging to train as hard as I do only to have to lose to a man with the unfair advantage of an androgenized body that intrinsically gives him an obvious advantage over me, no matter how hard I train.”

Mandatory inclusion of gender-confused individuals in opposite-sex sports is promoted by the left as a matter of “inclusivity,” but critics note that indulging “transgender” athletes in this way undermines the original rational basis for having sex-specific athletics in the first place, thereby depriving female athletes of recognition and professional or academic opportunities. Scientific research affirms that physiology gives males distinct athletic advantages that cannot be fully negated by hormone suppression.

In a 2019 paper published by the Journal of Medical Ethics, New Zealand researchers found that “healthy young men [do] not lose significant muscle mass (or power) when their circulating testosterone levels were reduced to (below International Olympic Committee guidelines) for 20 weeks,” and “indirect effects of testosterone” on factors such as bone structure, lung volume, and heart size “will not be altered by hormone therapy;” therefore, “the advantage to transwomen [biological men] afforded by the [International Olympic Committee] guidelines is an intolerable unfairness.”