The country’s best divers including world medallists Tom Daley, Jack Laugher, Chris Mears and Rebecca Gallantree will head to Southend this week, where they will look to showcase their talent in the British National Diving Cup from 22 – 24 Jan.
The British National Diving Cup will act as a stage for the debut of two key new pairings in the men’s and women’s 10m synchro events: Tom Daley diving with Daniel Goodfellow, whilst Tonia Couch will partner Lois Toulson, an exciting development ahead of the Olympics in Rio this summer.
After a successful partnership with 2014 European champion Sarah Barrow for the last few years, Couch will be joined by 16 year old Toulson in Southend. The youngster Toulson has shown promise on the Grand Prix circuit over the last year, starring on the junior international stage, including winning gold at the European Junior Championships.
To be up on 10m alongside someone with Tonia’s experience is amazing and it gives me more confidence to know I can do a good dive.
“To be up on 10m alongside someone with Tonia’s experience is amazing and it gives me more confidence to know I can do a good dive. We’ve trained really hard during the winter so I can’t wait to get out there and compete at the weekend and see what happens,” Toulson said.
The second new pairing sees Daley matched with Goodfellow. Daley, who won 10m platform bronze at the 2012 Olympic Games, said of the new partnership: “It’s been good training with Dan and I think that it’ll be exciting to get out and do synchro again. Dan and I know each other well and I think the partnership will work well and getting competition experience under our belts will be great.”
The Olympic year
After a tough winter’s training, the athletes will be looking to clinch their places on the British team for the upcoming LEN European Championships and the FINA World Cup. At the 2015 World Championships GB qualified four individual quota places and one synchro quota place for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, with the remaining Olympic places up for grabs at the FINA World Cup next month.