Thursday, May 24, 2012

Keelin Godsey Making Another Attempt At Trans Olympic History

Since 2004 the International Olympic Committee has allowed trans people to compete in the Olympic Games under the Stockholm Consensus.   Unfortunately those rule changes were enacted too late for many trans athletes around the world to take advantage of them in time to compete in Athens.

Yes, there are trans athletes around the world eager to compete at the highest levels, and the ultimate for any athlete is to compete for their nation in the Olympic Games.   The 2004 Stockholm Consensus allowed trans athletes the opportunity to make their dreams of Olympic glory happen

As of yet no transgender athlete has qualified for their national Olympic team either in the 2008 Summer Olympic Games in Beijing, the 2006 Winter Olympic Games in Torino or the 2010 Winter Olympic Games in Vancouver.  It wasn't for lack of trying why trans athletes weren't marching into Beijing's Bird's Nest Stadium for the opening ceremony . 

Kristin Worley made a contentious bid to qualify for the 2008 Canadian Olympic cycling team that fell short.  On our side of the border Keelin Godsey attempted to make the 2008 US Olympic track team in the women's hammer throw and finished seventh with a throw of 66.55 meters.   Godsey missed making the Olympic team and making history in the process by ten agonizing feet.

Nope, that isn't a typo.  It was the women's hammer throw team Godsey was trying to qualify for since despite the masculine appearance, Godsey is under the same competition protocols that Kye Allums used to compete in women's NCAA basketball competition.  In order to make his Olympic competition dream happen he has delayed taking testosterone. 

It's four years later, the Olympic torch relay is already making it way around the UK before it arrives in London on July 27 and Keelin Godsey is making another run at making his Olympic competition dreams come true and in the process striking a sporting blow for all transkind.

Godsey already made history last year as the first trans athlete to qualify for a US national team and compete in the Pan American Games.  He finished fifth in the women's hammer throw competition in Guadalajara with his third best lifetime throw ever at 67.84 meters.

He recently qualified to compete in the upcoming 2012 USA Olympic Track and Field Trials in Eugene, OR taking place from June 21-July 1.   If he finishes in the top three in the women's hammer throw competition he not only gets a trip to London for the upcoming Summer Olympic Games, he becomes the first transperson ever to qualify for their national Olympic team.   

And on the day the Athletics (what the rest of the world calls track and field) competition starts and Godsey steps into London's Olympic Stadium for his event, he'll become the first transperson ever to compete in the Olympics.

So yes, I will be paying closer attention than usual to the US Olympic track and field trails this year and hope Keelin makes his dream come true.

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