Two British transgender athletes are on the verge of making Olympian history, according to UK reports.
If the pair are selected for Team GB, they would compete in women’s events and become the world’s first transgender Olympians at the Rio Olympic Games to be held next month.
Until this year, rules governing athletics had prevented transgender and intersex people from taking part in events.
But the International Olympic Committee recently adopted a new policy on Sex Reassignment and Hyperandrogenism that loosens the restrictions and which has given hope to transgender athletes across the world who dream of competing internationally.
Ms Delia Johnston, a trans woman from organisation Trans In Sports who has acted as an adviser for several sporting bodies, described one of the athletes to the Daily Mail as a potential Olympic medal-winner because she achieved an “awesome” personal best this year but said the athletes themselves had concerns.
“They transitioned long ago and have competed at a European championship for this country,” she told the UK publication.
“They should be selected but fear they will be deemed too tricky – too many issues, too much negativity.
“Their national sports federations are aware of their gender history. But if they were in a gold or silver medal position they would probably drop back because their fear of ridicule and total humiliation is so massive.”
International Olympic Committee rules say the athletes are free to compete if they can demonstrate their testosterone level has been below a specified point for at least 12 months. The British Olympic Association (BOA) said they are fully supportive of any athlete that meets the qualification criteria for the Olympic Games.