A transgender contender at Miss Universe Canada is unfairly takingthe spotlight away from other contestants, complained friends andrelatives of some rivals as the race began with swimsuit andevening gown events Thursday. Wannabe beauty queen Jenna Talackova has dominated media attentionfor weeks, starting with her high-profile fight to enter thecontest even though she was born male. ‘This is Canada we are diverse, we are a multicultural country,we have to come from all walks of life and this is the trueCanada.’ Denis Davila, president, Beauties of Canada The leggy blond from Vancouver underwent a sex change operationfour years ago and is the first transgender contestant to competefor the title of Miss Universe Canada. Supporters of some other competitors complained during intermissionthat Talackova’s sensational story has overshadowed worthychallengers. “It’s a little bit one-sided and there’s a lot of focus on maybeJenna and maybe the issues surrounding it,” said Donavon Powell,there to cheer for 24-year-old girlfriend Vaughan Marr of Cremona,Alta.
“I think it’s good there’s attention brought to it, but I think itmight be outweighing and overshadowing the rest of the competitionin general.” Organizers say interest in this year’s race has been intense,drawing twice as many reporters as last year. A publicist saidvisiting media outlets include TV crews from two Tokyobroadcasters, CNN and the U.S. entertainment show Inside Edition. Still, the 800-seat downtown theatre that hosted Thursday’s pageantappeared just two-thirds full.
Swimsuits and gowns The contest kicked off with 62 women donning skimpy white bikinisand glittering evening gowns for a preliminary round. The 6-1Talackova stood head and shoulders above some contenders, and gavea flirtatious twirl near the top of the show to display her curvyfigure. The swimsuit and gown categories each contribute 30 per cent of thescore, while 10 per cent is drawn from the contestants’humanitarian work. The remaining 30 per cent comes from a privateinterview session set to take place Friday. Neodymium Disk Magnet
The winner will be crowned Saturday with a gala streamed online atbeautiesofcanada.com. Celebrity judges Colin McAllister and Justin Ryan of HGTV’s Home Heist vowed to remain impartial. “We won’t be pushed into making her the winner just because we wantto be involved in history in the making,” said Ryan, one of 15judges that include The Kennedys actress Kristin Booth and singer Kreesha Turner. “We’ll only decide if Jenna’s a suitable winner if Jenna shows usthat she’s worthy of holding that crown. She’s gorgeous, but she’sgot to be a whole lot more than gorgeous to be our winner.” Fellow judge and Rookie Blue actor Lyriq Bent said he’s steered clear of media coverage toremain as unbiased as possible. Sintered SmCo Magnets Manufacturer
He said he didn’t even know theidentity of the transgender contestant. “I’ve been hearing about it [but] I’ve not watched any TV orlistened to any news,” Bent said. “At the end of the day, we all have opinions and we have animportant job to make sure that we do not bring that opinion intoour judging. So that’s, I think, the best way to deal withanything.” Donald Trump gives OK Talackova created an international splash when organizersdisqualified her because she isn’t a naturally born female. Neodymium Rod Magnets
But pageant owner Donald Trump overruled the decision and saidTalackova could take part. On Thursday, five women automatically made it to Saturday’s finalround by winning sidebar contests. Calgary’s Adwoa Yamoah was named best runway model, Hamilton’sMarta Jablonska earned the humanitarian prize, Edmonton’s ChelseaBird won best body, Vancouver’s Casar Jacobson got the night’s mostaudience votes while the people’s choice award, drawn from onlinevotes, went to Mandi Gale of Grand Falls-Windsor, N.L. Denis Davila, president of Beauties of Canada, which runs theCanadian pageant, said he has received a lot of emails both for andagainst Talackova’s run for the crown.
But he said this year’s crop is a fair representation of Canadianwomen. “This is Canada we are diverse, we are a multicultural country,we have to come from all walks of life and this is the trueCanada,” said Davila.