Here is an incredible interview in HIV Plus Magazine with Olympian medalist, Gus Kenworthy, and AIDS/LifeCycle Ride Director, Tracy Evans. Kenworthy shares his excitement for participating in this year’s Ride and lays out his goals as a participant. Tracy Evans talks about her enthusiasm for cheering on Kenworthy, her commitment to “getting down to zero,” and the joy that comes from watching true heroes accomplish incredible things.
“Today, Kenworthy continues to share with his 1.7 million social media followers affirming messages about coming out, love, and self-expression. What’s more, he’s now using his fame to combat HIV and the stigma that remains around the virus.
Part of the reason why young people (ages 13 to 24) make up nearly a quarter of all new HIV diagnoses, Kenworthy says, is because “there is a lack of education and stigma that still exists around HIV.”
To help change that, Kenworthy recently announced his planned participation in AIDS/LifeCycle 2019, pledging to raise $1 million to fight HIV. This June 2–9, the Olympian will join over 2,000 cyclists on a seven-day, 545-mile trip from San Francisco to Los Angeles.
He’ll be cycling at a time when most (81 percent) of the youth newly diagnosed with HIV are gay and bisexual. “I think the younger generation was spared from experiencing a time when a diagnosis meant a death sentence, but we still have a long way to go,” he says. “We need to continue to speak up for the cause and teach young people how to protect themselves — that’s part of the reason I am doing the AIDS/LifeCycle ride.”’