SPRINGBOARD specialist Oliver Dingley has endured a busy start to the year with the British Diving Squad and is now hunting selection for the Canadian Grand Prix.
Eighteen-year-old Oliver competed as part of Team GB in the Madrid Grand Prix against some of the world’s top divers, just missing out on a place in the 3m springboard final and achiving eighth overall.
Just three weeks later, the Harrogate Diving Club member headed to the Men’s European Championships in Turin, one of his favourite pools, arriving as the reigning Junior European Champion and the youngest competitor.
Out of 30 divers, Oliver placed 12th to reach the finals in front of a sellout crowd and the Eurosport television cameras.
At the halfway stage he was sitting a point away from the bronze in fourth, but an over-rotated dive saw him slip to seventh, still a huge achievement for the youngest diver in the competition.
Oliver has since returned to school and the pressure of A’Levels, but despite being missing lessons due to competition is doing impressively well.
He now has four weeks to prepare for Montreal selection, putting in 20 hours training a week as well as attending school and seeking a commercial sponsor.
“These events are where top divers worldwide compete against each other so it gave me a fantastic opportunity to compete against the best in the world,” he said.
“Just hearing my name announced to the large crowd along with the Chinese and Russian divers along with those I have grown up watching on TV from all the other nations was a great experience.”