Gay swimming team in Barcelona gets skimpy for a cause

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Members of the Panthers, a gay swimming team in Barcelona, Spain, have stripped off their clothes for a cause this week. To battle homophobia in team sports and raise money for the BCN Checkpoint Centre—which focuses on HIV testing, treatment and prevention—the swimmers decided to don their skimpiest speedos in a poolside shoot.

Over two thousand images were taken for consideration. The final selection will be featured in a 2014 calendar, with proceeds going to BCN.

“Checkpoint Centre does some great work with Barcelona’s gay community with regards to HIV treatment and prevention,” team coordinator Mano Ventura told press officials. “So many health services are experiencing budget cuts, we decided this year to help raise money for a local institution.”

Ventura added, “The Panthers are dedicated to combating homophobia in sport, so we’re not just gay and lesbian athletes, and we don’t only participate in gay-specific sporting events. We play with teams across the country and the world to show there’s no need for hate among athletes.”

The sixty swimmers make up a larger Panthers collective of athletic groups that include various players of sports such as basketball, tennis, and soccer.

The shoot took place at the rooftop pool of Barcelona’s Axel hotel and was shot by Juan Pablo Santamaria.

The calendar is currently on sale for $13 and is available online here.

429Magazine

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