Two trans cyclists dominate Chicago women's race

The only biological female on the podium was Kristin Chalmers, who placed third.

Hannah Nightingale Washington DC

A pair of trans-identified males placed first and second at an Illinois cycling championship race on December 3, topping a field of biological females.

Tessa Johnson came in first at the Illinois State Cyclocross Championship’s Women’s Singlespeed category, while Evelyn Williamson came in second. The only biological female on the podium was Kristin Chalmers, who placed third.

The championships took place in Montrose Beach on Dec. 3, marking the final race in the eight-race Chicago CycloCross Cup. 

Johnson finished the women’s four-lap singlespeed race just over two minutes ahead of Williamson, who finished one minute and 20 seconds ahead of Chalmers.

Johnson also took part in the Women’s Category 1/2 race, taking third place and $100 in prize money, according to Reduxx.

While Johnson finished around seven minutes before the fourth-place finisher in the women's category 1/2 race, Johnson and the two women who placed first and second in the category were the only ones to complete a sixth lap. Williamson also competed in the race, but finished just three laps and was marked as DNF (did not finish).

According to the 2023 results of the Chicago CycloCross Cup, Johnson has taken first place in the Women’s Singlespeed overall standings, winning first place in seven of the eight races of the season. Williamson placed fourth in the overall standings, taking second place in four of the eight cup races.

Chicago CycloCross Cup states that transgender racers are "welcome here," adding that the cup "has always been first and foremost about fostering a positive & supportive community built around competitive cyclo-cross racing, and that means welcoming and challenging everyone who wants to contribute to the series and make it better."

Johnson and Williamson once again taking the top podium spots sparked outrage on X, with account i_heart_bikes writing, "thanks to [USA Cycling], men are racing in women’s categories all over the US."

2024 GOP primary candidate Vivek Ramaswamy reacted, "This mental health epidemic has reached new heights."

"This BS is getting so old. Say enough is enough NOW. Fight to keep biological men out of women’s sports," Donald Trump Jr. said.

In response to the two trans-identified men winning top spots, former University of Kentucky swimmer Riley Gaines vowed to pay women who refuse to compete against trans-identified males and lose out on prize money what they would have won.

"Any woman who doesn't compete and loses out on prize money, I will happily pay the fee out of my own pocket. In any sport. Stop. Playing. Their. Game," she wrote.

Seth Dillon of the Babylon Bee vowed to match Gaines’ contributions to female athletes.

"I've discussed this with Riley and think this is an excellent way to embolden women to fight back. You don't have to give up your prize money when you stand up to men taking over your sports — in fact, you'll make even more because I'll match Riley's contribution, doubling it."

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