A two-time Olympian criticized the rules that allowed a transgender runner to compete and win in the female category of the London Marathon, surpassing almost 14,000 women.
Mara Yamauchi, who came sixth in the marathon at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, criticized trans racer Glenique Frank for expressing her excitement about using “girl power” to participate in a major UK race on Sunday, as reported by the BBC.
Yamauchi tweeted “Males in the [female] category is UNFAIR for females.” This was accompanied by a clip of a mid-race interview with a runner wearing a sports bra, who also expressed excitement about soon becoming “a gran.”
“Nearly 14,000 actual females suffered a worse finish position [because] of” Frank, said Yamauchi, who said that even when she was “ranked second in the world” as a woman, “at least 1300 men ran faster than me.”
At the end of March, she observed that UK Athletics followed World Athletics’ regulations on excluding transgender women from top-level women’s competitions. This was done to make it “fair for athletes who have gone through male puberty to be excluded from the female category in athletics.”
However, it still permitted individuals who had registered for races to participate in events that were not designated for their biological sex.
“This male competed under UK Athletics’ transitional arrangements, but it is still wrong and unfair,” Yamauchi said.
According to Cathy Devine, who used to be a sport and physical activity lecturer at the University of Cumbria, she believes that the London Marathon is also “enabling.”
“Zero categories that exclude male performance advantage. Goddess forbid that female runners should have their own category celebrating what women runners can do,” she wrote on Twitter.
On Tuesday, Frank stated to The Post that she had participated in the male category during her past marathons, such as in November in New York, because she had no other option but to register with her passport’s name and gender.
She still ran around New York City dressed as a tourist in a bright red bra and a long pink wig.
Since Frank is a British citizen and based in the UK, the passport rules for the London Marathon did not apply to him.
“I ticked female because I see myself as female,” said Frank. Frank came out three years ago as Glenique, which is a combination of Glen and “unique.” Frank has “known since I was five that I was in the wrong body.”
Frank found it “traumatic” to be publicly attacked while he was at the race, “trying to spread joy and happiness with the rainbow love.”
Frank, a personal trainer, acknowledged the criticism by saying “I get it.” “I feel sad that I’ve upset Mara, because I respect her.”
It went viral after Frank shared with the BBC her happiness of completing her 17th marathon.
“Girl power!” Frank flexed her bulging biceps while wearing rainbow-colored armbands.
During the middle of the race, the runner stopped their conversation to express excitement about their “beautiful son” expecting a baby, despite still having old photos on their social media as a balding, married man from earlier races.
“So I’m going to be a gran — Granny G!” Before running off, Frank was holding a transgender flag that had blue, pink, and white colors.
Frank expressed surprise at the negative response, explaining that she is not a professional runner who competes for prizes or rankings.
In the races, she has raised charitable donations of up to $37,000.
“I did [the race in] four hours 11 minutes. There’s lots of women that beat me,” she commented that there were over 6,150 people ahead of her in the category.
Frank said that they will choose the options “other” or “male” from now on to satisfy everyone.
“And I’ll still do it in four hours and I won’t steal anybody’s money,” she said.