Scottish former professional cyclist Robert Millar is now Philippa York, in what she describes in a post on a cycling website as “a step forward for everyone”.
In a lengthy statement, York, 58, said that at the start of the millennium she had embarked on “a journey” and that “the outcome of that journey has meant that for a considerable time now I have lived as Philippa”.
York wrote on cyclingnews.com that outdated social attitudes had contributed to preventing her from being more public previously.
She also named segments of the print media as partly responsible.
“As much as I’ve guarded my privacy over the years there are a few, I believe obvious, reasons to why I haven’t had a public ‘image’ since I transitioned.
“Gratifyingly, times have moved on from 10 years ago when my family, friends and I were subjected to the archaic views and prejudice that some people and sections of the tabloid media held,” York wrote.
“Thankfully gender issues are no longer a subject of such ignorance and intolerance, there’s a much better acceptance and understanding.”
She added that “while there has been some speculation concerning my gender over the past decade, perhaps it’ll now be better understood why unwelcome and unasked-for intrusions into that transition have been damaging not only to myself but to those I love”.
As a racer, and with the former identity of Robert Millar, the Scot took the King of the Mountains title in the Tour de France and fourth overall in 1983 before retiring mid-way through 1996.
York will be returning to the Tour de France this year as a commentator for ITV4, which she describes as “a very exciting prospect”.
• This article orginally appeared on our sister site inews.co.uk