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Ironman creates new Open division and revises eligibility requirements for transgender athletes

PC division is also expanded to include athletes with intellectual disabilities

Photo by: Kevin Mackinnon

Ironman has updated its competition rules around the eligibility of transgender athletes – the new policy will align with World Triathlon’s  rules. The company has also announced that it will will create a new Open division “to provide further inclusion opportunities, enabling participation for all able-bodied athletes who wish to race in an event without a gender or age-based peer comparison.”

Transgender athlete eligibility

“Ironman will be applying World Triathlon’s eligibility regulations for Transgender Athletes which requires transitioning Male to Female athletes to maintain less than a 2.5 nMol/L testosterone level for two sequential years prior to receiving approval to compete as a Female,” the company said in a release yesterday. “Further, transitioning Male to Female athletes may not have competed as a Male in an official competition of triathlon or its related multisport or an allied sport of swimming, cycling, athletics (including all track and field events) and cross-country skiing for a minimum four-years preceding approval to compete as a Female. Transitioning Male to Female athletes can participate in the Open division during this four-year period until they are formally approved under the new policy. Eligibility requirements for transitioning Female to Male athletes remain consistent with the previous Transgender Policy.  The updated Ironman Transgender Policy can be found here.”

Open division

“This participatory division provides a welcoming and inclusive field for able-bodied athletes that cannot or do not wish to race in a competitive age or gender group,” Ironman announced. “With no approval process necessary for participation in the Open division, athletes can self-select to register for the Open division during an event registration process. Athletes in the Open division will still be bound by the Competition Rules and are not eligible for Ironman or Ironman 70.3 World Championship qualifying slots.”

PC/ID Open division

Ironman also announced a change to its Physically Challenged Open/ Exhibition division – it will now include athletes with intellectual disabilities.  “The newly modified PC/ID Open division is a participatory division which includes PC Open athletes, Special Teams, and ID Open athletes,” Ironman announced. “Athletes in the PC/ID Open division will also be eligible for the PC/ID Open World Championship Drawing for slots to compete in the Ironman and Ironman 70.3 World Championship.”

Ironman has also announced that it will be following the World Triathlon guidelines on running shoes.