Canada’s Adam Roberge (Jukebox Factor) and Austin Killips (Nice bikes) won the elite men’s and women’s categories at the Belgian Waffle Ride North Carolina on the super-tough course with over 4000 m of climbing. The 209 km course is 40 per cent off-road, as the racers ride up and down the Blue Ridge Mountains.
Roberge took the win, out-sprinting his Jukebox Facto teammate Dylan Johnson and Finn Gullickson in a time of 7:23.
In the elite women’s race, Killips took the win over Paige Onweller (Trek Bikes) and Flavia Oliveira Parks in a time of 8:28.
After the race, social media was once again filled with attacks on Killips. Killips, who is trans, was the subject of similar vitriol after a win at the Tour of Gila.
Currently, Killips is well within her rights to race in the category, although the UCI is reopening discussions about the policy at its next meeting in Glasgow.
Onweller took to Instagram to discuss some of the comments. “I also want to highlight that anger and hate directed to a person or an event do not accomplish anything. At the current state, race organizers are in a very difficult position. A transgender athlete won the women’s overall, which has caused some controversy. For those following women’s road cycling, you are aware of the UCI rule that this is currently allowed. Rather than sharing my personal opinions about the UCI rule, I think it’s most important to recognize that all athletes, no matter how they identify, should have a space to compete and race,” the post began.
“Additionally, underneath all helmets is a face and a person who deserves respect, dignity and a safe space to ride bikes. In the future, I feel a separate category is appropriate but event promoters are also learning what is best to preserve both female cycling while also creating an inclusive space for all to ride. These things take both time and grace to resolve. I plan to continue to support and attend BWR events in the future as I trust they will navigate this with respect for all riders going forward. I want to thank all event promoters for the work they do and the difficulty they face in these decisions,” she concluded.
For full results, click here: BelgianWaffleRide.com