Online bookies are betting that Angela Ponce, who won the 2018 Miss Universe Spain, will defeat the biologically female contestants at this year’s Miss Universe pageant.
Angela Ponce, the first transgender contestant at Miss Universe pageant, is poised to win at this year’s competition. The 26-year-old, who was the first transgender woman to be crowned Miss Universe Spain, will represent her country at the 2018 Miss Universe pageant which will be held in Bangkok, Thailand.
According to The Blast, as the competition is nearing its final, Ponce has become a clear favorite to win based on online bets. Bookmakers at MyBookie.ag have made her the odds-on frontrunner for the contest, with current odds of +600.
In comparison, the Miss USA Sarah Rose Summers has odds of +2,000 if she wins the whole competition. Meanwhile, Miss Mauritius Urvashee Gooriah has odds of +20,000 if she wins.
Some others are betting on whether host Steve Harvey will announce the wrong winner again or not. Many are putting their money on Harvey making the same flub after he mistakenly named the first runner-up, Miss Colombia Ariadna Gutierrez, as the winner at the 2015 Miss Universe pageant in Las Vegas.
Ponce has said that if she takes the crown, it will be a “win for human rights.” She plans to use the title as a platform to speak up for trans kids, particularly drawing attention toward high rates of suicides among trans teenagers and discrimination against them around the world. “If my going through all this contributes to the world moving a little step forward, then that’s a personal crown that will always accompany me,” she told The Associated Press in Madrid, Spain in July.
Ponce, who reportedly began hormone therapy at 16 and underwent vaginoplasty surgery at 24, added in another interview earlier this month, “If they give me the crown, it would show trans women are just as much women as cis women.”
The 2018 Miss Universe pageant will take place on December 16.