A transgender disco golfer has been banned from the women’s division of the California Tour following an 11-hour court ruling.
Natalie Ryan filed a discrimination lawsuit in February to protest the sport’s governing body – the Professional Disc Golf Association – that tightened the rules to the point that it would exclude her.
The new rule requires a transgender woman to have had a medical transition during Tanner Stage Two or before she turned 12 and also have low testosterone levels.
On Thursday, Ryan — who has won two events during her touring career — was initially deemed fit to play after U.S. District Judge Troy L. Nunley issued a restraining order.
“It appears there was a deliberate act, the creation of a policy, that excludes individuals based on their protected status as a transgender woman,” Nunley wrote in his decision.
Natalie Ryan, a transgender woman competing on the women’s tour, filed a discrimination lawsuit in February to protest the sport’s governing body – the Professional Disc Golf Association – that tightened the rules to the point that it would exclude her
On Thursday, Ryan — who has won two events during her career on the tour — was initially deemed fit to play after U.S. District Judge Troy L. Nunley issued a restraining order.
Ryan competed in the first round and finished in fifth place in the clubhouse of the OTB Open
“The Court is not ruling on whether this is sufficient to establish actual intentional discrimination, but it raises serious questions,” she added. Out Sports.
Nunley determined that the transition requirement in the criteria was unfair. Ryan competed in the first round and finished in fifth place in the clubhouse of the OTB Open.
But the tour filed in the Ninth Court of Appeals and won on Friday, removing Ryan from the tour.
“It appears that the court has no diversity jurisdiction over the [Disc Golf Pro] Tour because plaintiff and at least one member of the Tour are citizens of Virginia,” the appeals court ruled.
The Disc Golf Pro Tour, which hosts the OTB Open, said the ruling allows them to be clear about eligibility protocols.
“This order restores the DGPT’s ability to enforce its current gender appropriateness policy. The DGPT will follow the court ruling and enforce its Gender Eligibility Policy, barring Ms. Ryan from participating in the OTB Open,” they said in a statement.
Ryan made an impassioned case for including transgender people in Frisbee golf in an Instagram post following the appeal and her removal from the tournament, which offers prizes of up to $35,000.
“I will not be threatened, I will not be intimidated, I will not be erased. It’s a relief to compete where I belong,” she wrote.
However, the tour filed in the Ninth Court of Appeals and won on Friday, removing Ryan from the tour
“To all trans people who love this sport as much as I do, I’m here for you, we all deserve better.”
The issue of transgender athletes competing against biological women has been in the spotlight lately following a string of dominating performances across sports.
In cycling, former champion Hannah Arensman retired from the sport entirely after being beaten to a podium finish by a trans rival.
“In my last race at the recent UCI Cyclocross National Championships in the elite women’s category, I came in fourth, flanked on either side by male riders who were third and fifth,” she said in her farewell announcement.
“My sister and family sobbed when they saw a man finish ahead of me, after seeing several physical interactions with him during the race.”
This was followed by a controversial win by trans cyclist Tiffany Thomas, 46, who sparked controversy in March after winning a women’s race in New York City.
Champion cyclist Hannah Arensmen, left, recently retired from the sport after being beaten by trans athletes
Tiffany Thomas, center, took first place at the Randall’s Island Crit bike race in New York City in March
Cece Telfer became the first openly trans woman to win an NCAA title when she finished first in the 400-meter hurdles at the Division II National Championships in 2019 (pictured)
Laurel Hubbard became the first openly transgender woman to compete in the 2020 Olympics
Lia Thomas (left) was thrust into the spotlight when she became the top female college swimmer at the NCAA Championships in March 2022
Proponents of including trans athletes in women’s sports insist that fairness can be maintained at a competitive level, while opponents argue that the physical advantage they have over biological women cannot be reversed.
One of the first examples of trans athletes achieving success in female sports was in 2019 when Cece Telfer became the first openly trans woman to win an NCAA title when she placed first in the 400-meter hurdles at the Division II National Championships.
The following year, Laurel Hubbard, from New Zealand, became the first openly transgender woman to compete in the Olympics when she competed in weightlifting at the Tokyo Games.
And in March 2022, trans swimmer Lia Thomas became the most notable case of trans athletes beating their biological female rivals when she blew the competition out of the water to become the top female college swimmer at the NCAA Championships in March 2022.