Trans Athlete Fails To Make Olympic Team
American Keelin Godsey finished fifth in the hammer throw at Thursday’s Olympic trials in Portland. And while fifth isn’t typically front page fodder, Godsey, 28, who was born and still competes as a female, now identifies as a male and was striving to become the first American to openly identify as a trans athlete at the Olympics. Godsey’s chances of making the team were slim to start; he fulfilled the B-standard of 69.00 meters for Olympic qualifying, but needed to either win Thursday’s Trials or finish in the top three and fulfill the A-standard of 71.50 meters. He was only able to toss the hammer 70.49, a personal best.
The road’s been tough for Godsey, who last month told Sports Illustrated he endured verbal and physical abuse as “the ‘gay’ kid” throughout high school, including having his ribs broken by a group of female students. In college Godsey was segregated to his own locker room – a converted cement room with a door – after coming out as trans to his dean, athletic director, and teammates in the spring of 2005. “In some ways this is the last body I would ever want,” Godsey told SI. “I’m a female when I compete. Every day I have to sweat, stress, and freak out. How do I look? What is someone going to think of me?”
Amid the hardships Godsey broke collegiate records and graduated as a 16-time All-America competing in hammer, discus, shot put, and the weight throw. Unfortunately his dream of becoming an Olympian was a bit too tall a task. With his career seemingly over, Godsey will now start the medical process of gender reassignment, beginning with testosterone supplements and eventually physical surgery.