Former Olympian and Virginia Tech D1 swimmer Reka Gyorgy penned a letter criticizing the NCAA for allowing transgender swimmer Lia Thomas compete in the women’s division at the NCAA championships, a decision she feels took the spot away from her. Lia Thomas, a transgender swimmer, recently made headlines by winning the NCAA championships in the 500-yard freestyle title, beating the second place finisher by more than a second-and-a-half.
In her letter she went on to say that she fully respects Thomas and stands with her, but does not agree with the NCAA’s choice to let her race in the women’s division, saying it hurts her, her teammates, and other women in the pool.
“I respect and fully stand with Lia Thomas, I am convinced that she is no different than me or any other D-I swimmer who has woken up at 5 a.m. her entire life for morning practice. She has sacrificed family vacations and holidays for competition. She has pushed herself to the limit to be the best athlete she could be. She is doing what she is passionate about and deserves that right.
On the other hand, I would like to critique the NCAA rules that allow her to compete against us, who are biologically women.
I’m writing this letter right now in hopes that the NCAA will open their eyes and change these rules in the future. It doesn’t promote our sport in a good way and I think it is disrespectful against the biologically female swimmer who are competing in the NCAA.”
Her full letter can be read here in which she hopes they will make the right changes for a better future in the sport.