Transgender weightlifter Hubbard out of Olympic final | Inquirer Sports
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Transgender weightlifter Hubbard out of Olympic final

/ 09:42 PM August 02, 2021
Laurel Hubbard Tokyo Olympics weightlifting

New Zealand’s Laurel Hubbard reacts in the women’s +87kg weightlifting competition during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at the Tokyo International Forum in Tokyo on August 2, 2021. (Photo by Chris GRAYTHEN / POOL / AFP)

Pioneering transgender weightlifter Laurel Hubbard crashed out of her Tokyo Olympics final Monday after botching all three of her lift attempts in the snatch section of the +87kg category.

The 43-year-old New Zealander made history in becoming the first female transgender Olympian but fell out of medal contention early, making a heart gesture to the spectator-free arena.

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She made a brief statement to reporters after bowing out, thanking Japan for hosting the Games in difficult circumstances and the sporting organizations that made her Olympic campaign possible.

“Of course, I’m not totally unaware of the controversy that surrounds my participation in these Games and, as such, I’d like to thank the IOC for really affirming its commitment to the principles of Olympism and establish that sport is for all people and is inclusive, accessible,” she said.

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“And the International Weightlifting Federation have been extraordinary.”

Hubbard was born male and competed as a man before transitioning to female in her 30s, taking up the sport again after meeting IOC guidelines on reduced testosterone for transgender athletes.

Her presence in Tokyo is a groundbreaking move that Olympic chiefs say makes the Games more inclusive, but critics fear will undermine women’s sport.

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Weightlifter Hubbard becomes first trans woman at Olympics

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