Defeated Hunt Targets Triumphant Homecoming

Blue Lagoon
Date: 01/09/2016

Reigning champion Gary Hunt, with 47 podiums out of 55 stops the undeniable dominator of the World Series, comes to the picturesque location of the Blue Lagoon in Pembrokeshire after the second worst result in his cliff diving career, a 10th place. Keen to show his brilliancy from the 27m-platform on home soil, the 32-year-old will be supported by an eagerly anticipating crowd in the sold out event. It will be the first time the women are competing at the Blue Lagoon, a circular-shaped former slate quarry, now a National Trust site, with high cliffs providing a Colosseum-like setting in the middle of pastoral farmland.

After diving to her first-ever World Series victory, Canadian Lysanne Richard comes to South West Wales as the only diver who's defeated surprise wildcard Rhiannan Iffland this year. The Australian has dominated her first two appearances from 20m and leads the standings in the women's after three events. With four competitions in the eight weeks to come, only the fittest and mentally strongest will manage to finish in the top. Will the rookie Iffland be able to keep up her strong performance from the first third of the season or will experience start to pay off for America's Rachelle Simpson, the two-time overall champion who came back strong in Italy with a 3rd placed finish?

In the men's, last weekend's stop in Italy has also stirred up the rankings and produced a fresh podium. Russia's Artem Silchenko executed his diving programme excellently to become first after eight consecutive stops without even a podium finish, while 5-time champion Gary Hunt missed out completely. With only a 10th place the season's triple winner has lost ground in the overall standings to his main competitor from Mexico, Jonathan Paredes and another Italian-like result would mean the Brit dropped down further in the rankings.

Gary Hunt was the winner at Blue Lagoon when Wales last hosted an event back in 2013. Photo: Rutger Pauw / Red Bull Content Pool.

Going into the second half of the 2016 Red Bull Cliff Diving World Series, competition is very close as positions 5 to 9 are only divided by 30 points. This means a slight faltering by one of the athletes in the upcoming stop, in the former slate quarry in Wales, could change the whole order.

While it's a first time for the women's in the Blue Lagoon, the men have already competed twice in this location and it was Italy-podium finisher Steven LoBue (USA) who took his first ever World Series win here in 2012 and local hero Gary Hunt who triumphed in the last showing in 2013.

With three British athletes in the 14 men and 9 female-strong divers line-up, Gary Hunt and former Olympian Blake Aldridge will be backed up by wildcard diver Mat Cowen, the serenity of this usually quiet corner of the country will get shattered during the athletes' acrobatic 3-second flights into the fresh Celtic Sea.

Watch it Live

This event will be LIVE on September 11 from 2.50 PM BST on www.redbullcliffdiving.com and Red Bull TV. Red Bull TV is available on connected TVs, gaming consoles, mobile devices and more. Find out more at about.redbull.tv

If you miss the event or simply want to watch all the action again, the replay will be available on demand a few minutes after the event.

Note that the live webcast and replay is geo-blocked in the US due to an exclusive broadcast deal with FOX Sports. The event will air on FS1 at 4pm (ET) on October 09.