Berliner Tageszeitung - Transgender swimmer Thomas qualifies for US college final

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Transgender swimmer Thomas qualifies for US college final




Transgender swimmer Thomas qualifies for US college final
Transgender swimmer Thomas qualifies for US college final / Foto: © AFP

Transgender swimmer Lia Thomas was the fastest qualifier for Thursday's 500-yard freestyle final at the US collegiate women's swimming and diving championships in Atlanta.

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Thomas, who competes for the University of Pennsylvania, topped Thursday morning preliminaries with a time of 4mins, 33.82secs with Erica Sullivan of Texas second in 4:36.79 and Virginia's Emma Weyant third in 4:37.25.

Thomas would be the first known transgender athlete to capture a Division I title if she wins a final at the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) meet at McAuley Aquatic Center.

Thomas has the top seeding time in the 200 freestyle at 1:41.93 and is seeded 10th in the 100 free at 47.63.

Thomas, who had previously competed as a male swimmer at Penn, has divided opinion, some arguing she has an unfair physiological advantage while others say she should be allowed to compete freely as a woman.

K. Berger--BTZ