(LifeSiteNews) — A top female professional bicycle racer who has racked up 35 wins on the national cyclocross circuit over the course of her career said she’s leaving the sport after finishing in fourth place behind a man who claims to be a woman.
U.S. cyclocross champ Hannah Arensman made the announcement in an amicus brief filed with the U.S. Supreme Court asking the judges to vacate a lower court’s preliminary injunction against a West Virginia law banning student athletes from competing on teams designated for the opposite sex.
“I have decided to end my cycling career,” Arensman wrote in the filing. “At my last race at the recent UCI Cyclocross National Championships in the elite women’s category, I came in 4th place, flanked on either side by male riders awarded 3rd and 5th place.”
Arensman’s final race was the USA Cycling Cyclocross National Championships in Connecticut held in December. The female champ finished in fourth place, with two women snagging first and second place and trans-identifying male cyclist Austin Killips taking third prize. Killips previously took first place in the international cyclocross tournament in Massachusetts held in November.
READ: ‘Transgender’ ideology consistently harms women the most, but no one seems to care
In her brief, Arensman said she “was born into a family of athletes” and was “[e]ncouraged by my parents and siblings” to play sports and ultimately “become an elite cyclocross racer.”
“Over the past few years, I have had to race directly with male cyclists in women’s events,” she said, going on to point out that her intensive training is increasingly proving ineffective thanks to being forced to compete against men.
“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,” Arensman said.
An additional critique of USA Cycling’s decision to hand the third-prize award to the male rider in December is that, in addition to being a man, Killips also appeared to have engaged in inappropriate physical efforts to block Arensman from passing him.
Footage captured of the event shows one instance in which Killips apparently rams his bicycle toward Arensman as she moves to overtake him. A USA Cycling spokesman said at the time the national governing body was looking into the incident but wasn’t taking any action against Killips. For his part, Killips blamed the muddy conditions and argued that claims concerning his alleged misconduct were “ridiculous.”
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However, Arensman referred in her brief to “several physical interactions with him throughout the race,” and said that her “sister and family sobbed as they watched a man finish in front of me.”
Fox News reported that Arensman joins a total of “67 athletes, coaches and family members who called on the Supreme Court to vacate the preliminary injunction” against West Virginia’s HB 3293, also known as the “Save Women’s Sports” law, which bars men and boys from competing against girls and women on public school or college sports teams.
READ: West Virginia governor signs bill banning males from women’s and girls’ sports
West Virginia’s Republican Gov. Jim Justice signed the legislation in April 2021, but it has faced a series of court battles since then and enforcement of the measure is currently blocked.
This month, West Virginia’s Republican attorney general Patrick Morrisey and the conservative legal group Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) elevated the issue to the Supreme Court, asking the nation’s highest judicial body to roll back the current injunction and allow enforcement of the law.
According to the text of the legislation, “[c]lassification of teams according to biological sex is necessary to promote equal athletic opportunities for the female sex,” since “biological males and biological females are not in fact similarly situated” in competitive sports, LifeSiteNews previously reported.
“Biological males would displace females to a substantial extent if permitted to compete on teams designated for biological females,” the bill states, arguing that assertions of “gender identity” opposed to actual sex lack a “legitimate relationship to the State of West Virginia’s interest in promoting equal athletic opportunities for the female sex.”
Debates over male dominance in women’s sports are far from isolated to professional bicycling, cropping up in a broad range of competitive sports including swimming, surfing, skateboarding, weight-lifting, and mixed martial arts (MMA).
As LifeSiteNews has reported, men and boys are seizing a growing number of opportunities and wins from female athletic competitors as public schools, colleges, and national leagues have caved to transgender ideology.
In response, numerous states have moved to enact legislation reaffirming biological reality in a bid to ensure women’s competitions remain just for women. Some sporting leagues have responded to pressure by barring participants from competing in categories that don’t correspond to their biological sex or creating new categories just for gender-confused athletes.
Scientific research continues to reaffirm that men have inherent physical capabilities that give them a competitive edge over women in sports — capabilities that aren’t eliminated through the use of cross-sex hormones.
Meanwhile, Arensman’s announcement came amid news of a separate cycling win by a gender-confused man.
“Tiffany” Thomas, 46, who only began cycling in 2018, took first place in the women’s division of New York City’s Randall’s Island Crit race over the weekend. He said racing while wearing the gear of the women’s cycling group LA Sweat made him “feel like a superhero.”