Quote Of The Day
“Prior to surgery, the average T level [was] … only very slightly below male average and well above the cutoff mandated by the IAAF for women competitors. After a typical gonadectomy, average T level is almost exactly one, which is below that of an average female. This means the athletes will have gotten stunningly slower after surgery; I estimate about 20 seconds per mile. This speed reduction would change a world-class athlete into a decent national-caliber one.”
On the other hand, if an athlete opted for reducing her T chemically, she could stay just under … the IAAF limit. The speed loss would be markedly smaller. Armed with this knowledge, I assume most athletes would choose chemical means to lower T. Perhaps someone warned [Caster] Semenya about the effects of a gonadectomy, and perhaps this influenced her choice to go the chemical route.”
“… I’m sure that many readers would be skeptical about the loss of speed after surgery, but I have no doubt. You see, I’ve been there. I’m transgender; I competed for many years as male, then had surgery and competed as female afterwards. I went from running a 37-minute 10K as a 46-year-old man to a 42-minute 10K as a 48-year-old woman.”
– LRC guest columnist Joanna Harper, writing about on the current intersex issue facing women’s sports. Harper is a former 2:23 men’s marathoner who is now a multi-time national champ as a woman.
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