Tracey Lambrechs's mixed views about transgender weightlifter competing for Commonwealth Games spot

  • 05/03/2017
Tracey Lambrechs, Commonwealth Games, Weighlifting
Tracey Lambrechs (Photosport)

New Zealand Olympic weightlifter Tracey Lambrechs has mixed emotions about transgender competitor Laurel Hubbard potentially taking her spot in the Commonwealth Games.

Speaking to Sunday Sport on RadioLIVE, Lambrechs says while she supports Hubbard competing in weightlifting, she doesn't think she should be eligible for the female Commonwealth Games' spot.

She said Hubbard's "history of being a male" should disqualify her.

"I'm more than happy that she has become a female, I have no problem with that as everybody needs to do what they need to do to be happy with life," Lambrechs told Andrew Hourdie and Jim Kayes.

"Personally I think [transgender people] should be able to compete, but they shouldn't be able to take spots from other female athletes."

Lambrechs is competing at Sunday's Auckland championships in the 90kg+ category, the same weight class that Hubbard will be competing in.

Hubbard was meant to be taking part as a guest lifter but instead opted to pull out of the event.

New Zealand only takes one lifter from each weight category to the Commonwealth Games. With Hubbard's previous weightlifting history, the only way Lambrechs could make the 2018 trip is if she drops a weight class.

Lambrechs, who won bronze at the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, believes Hubbard's previous weightlifting gives her an unfair advantage.

"I personally don't think it's very fair that Laurel has weight lifting history and was one of our top male lifters for a long time," she said.

"I know training partners who have said the numbers are amazing, a 122kg snatch and 140kg jerk. When I had my best competition I attempted a 111kg snatch and a 140kg clean jerk."

Lambrechs has not spoken to Hubbard since the news came out, but she hopes this won't ruin Hubbard's confidence and determination to compete at future events. 

"This will be hard on her. I feel for her, this has been blown up because I think people don't know what to do or say," she said.

"I hope she is still training hard but I'm sure she has a good circle around her and support from New Zealand Weightlifting."