Earlier this year, New Zealand weightlifter Laurel Hubbard qualified as the first transgender to compete in the Olympics. Opponents to this decision launched a petition against the international transgender athlete standards and the qualification of Hubbard.
At the time of reporting, the Change.org petition has gathered over 25,000 signatures. The International Olympics Committee (IOC) requires transgender athletes to identify as their new gender for at least four years and submit testosterone levels. FBA previously reported, Hubbard, born a biological male named Gavin Hubbard, went through with the transition to female in 2013 at the age of 35.
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Hubbard also competed in men’s weightlifting prior to transitioning. Hubbard competed against men until 2001 at age 23 before stopping weightlifting altogether. Hubbard was able to set national records in the junior competition and had a best snatch and clean and jerk total of 300 kg (661 lbs).
In 2017, Hubbard was able to compete in the women’s division at the top level. Hubbard is now among some of the best weightlifters in the world for her division. She is also the oldest qualifier in her division at 43 (Independent).