As riders raced at US cyclocross nationals over the weekend, a group of anti-trans protesters stood along the course holding signs opposing the participation of trans women in women’s sports.
The demonstrators were representing “Save Women’s Sport,” a group that, according to its own Twitter profile, is “a coalition that seeks to preserve biology-based eligibility standards for participation in female sports.” The protestors’ signs displayed messages that included “Say no to males competing as females” and “woman = adult human female.”
Their signs were intermittently shown during the broadcast of the event, which took place in DuPage County, Illinois, in the Chicago area.
Their presence at the CX championships has led to a social media furor as trans rights supporters have condemned Save Women’s Sport, and by extension, USA Cycling for not preventing their demonstration at the time, or speaking out in condemnation of it afterwards.
An open letter to USA Cycling demanding action, including the resignation of the organization’s president, Rob DeMartini, was circulated by USA Cycling official Flyyn Leonard and received dozens of signatures.
“Myself and others are less safe at sanctioned events due to your continued refusal to act upon repeated instances of the Save Women’s Sport hate group participating and fundraising on the backs of USA Cycling events, as well as continued instances of transphobic behavior online by athletes, promoters, and even officials,” wrote Leonard, MTB Coordinator for the Eastern Collegiate Cycling Conference.
“USA Cycling has now allowed this hate group to harass, make others uncomfortable, and attempt to gain support for their mission of exclusion at two separate nationals – first at Marathon Nationals, and now at Cyclocross Nationals.”
CyclingTips has reached out to USA Cycling for further comment on the incident.