Thursday, 27 April 2017

Fina High Board Diving World Cup: Gary Hunt returns to Abu Dhabi, where successful year began

ABU DHABI // Gary Hunt returns to the venue where he started off the season 12 months ago by winning gold.
Nothing seems to have changed as the Briton returns as the favourite to defend his crown in the Abu Dhabi leg of the Fina High Board Diving World Cup on Friday and Saturday at the Yas Marina. | More info here
"Definitely, there’s more pressure being the champion but that’s something that I enjoy and like to feel that other people are chasing me," said Hunt at the launch ceremony at Yas Crown Plaza hotel on Thursday.

    "This gives me more motivation to stay on top. It is always more difficult to stay on top than to chase the leader and I love that challenge."
    Hunt, the 2015 Fina Best Male High Diver of the Year, is known for his complex dives.
    "It is difficult to think about the position you are lying in, the results and others performance," he said.
    "At the edge of the platform I’m thinking just about diving and the way you can better it.

      "When I’m training in the off season, I’m not training to beat the other divers. I know my body, I know my potential, and if I feel like I can improve and reach the potential that I have, I feel very gratified to be on top of the podium.
      "The driving force that keeps me training is just to improve and keep learning. It’s a personal goal of any athlete, to perform at the biggest stage."
      Hunt, 32, said mental toughness is what gives him the edge over the others.

        "As a young diver, I didn’t have the very high level," he said. "My friends had a very high level and I had to push myself to keep up with them.
        "I would try to put myself in difficult situations and try dives I wasn’t really capable of. I made lots of mistakes when I was younger but I just kept going.
        "It gave me mental toughness and good spatial awareness. For some, reason when I get lost in the air, I know how to find my way and land back on my feet again just through my training.

          "So, it gives me lot of confidence when I’m on the board and in this sport confidence is everything."
          Joining Hunt in the title defence is the women’s champion Lysanne Richard of Canada, in the entries from 17 countries.

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