Britain’s young divers ready for competitive return

26 Oct 2021

The best of Britain's young divers will return to top-level competition over the next four days as the Plymouth Life Centre plays hosts to the British Elite Junior Diving Championships (27th-30th October).

The event's full title in 2021 is the British Elite Junior Diving Championships In Memory of David Jenkins, with the elite domestic meet also allowing athletes, coaches and the rest of the diving family to remember Dive London Development Lead Coach David Jenkins, who sadly died earlier this month, aged 31.

A minute's applause will be held as part of tributes to the much loved coach and friend of the British Diving community.

With the global pandemic having forced major disruptions on the junior aquatics calendar for the past 18 months, this four-day event is a valuable competition opportunity for the next generation of Olympic and World Championship hopefuls. As well as competing for national honours, the 2021 contest is the selection meet for the 2020 World Junior Diving Championships, which are taking place in Kiev, Ukraine in December.

The individual and synchro events - over 1m Springboard, 3m Springboard and Platform - will be competed across three age categories, which have been adjusted in line with recent FINA and LEN amendments. Those categories are Group C (13 years and under in 2021); Group B (14, 15 and 16 years in 2021) and Group A (17, 18 and 19 years in 2021).

Seven athletes are pre-selected for the World Junior Championship team, including Olympic duo Eden Cheng and Andrea Spendolini-Sirieix, plus a quintet of European Junior medallists from earlier this year. The remaining spots will be contested in Plymouth, putting further importance on this chance for Britain's young divers to get that competitive experience back.

Eden Cheng 2019 World Champs
Eden Cheng

That competitive environment has been denied to the country's up-and-coming aquatics athletes for much of 2020 and 2021. The impact of the pandemic on junior diving in this country is clear - but British Diving and our Home Nations partners continue to work hard with clubs to build back strongly and provide opportunities for our athletes to develop, thrive and perform on the biggest domestic and international stages.

This Elite Juniors meet will undoubtedly showcase the resilience and commitment of each and every athlete involved.

British Diving Performance Manager Kim White said: “This week will mark the return of competition for the best junior divers in Great Britain. They have been waiting a long time to return to this environment, interrupted by the pandemic. This event is the pinnacle of junior diving in the UK and an opportunity for our divers to qualify for the World Junior Championships later this year.

“It will also be a time for the diving family to reflect on the life of David Jenkins. David had an immense impact on our sport and on everyone’s life through his dedication and enthusiasm to the sport he loved.”

Councillor Mark Deacon, Plymouth City Council Cabinet Member for Customer Services, Culture Leisure and Sport said: “It’s fantastic to see our young divers back competing here in Plymouth. The Life Centre is a world-class facility, and the diving pool’s improvement works completed earlier this year means it continues to be an outstanding venue for competitions.

“Thank you to British Diving for leading the tributes to David Jenkins, whose death is a great loss to the diving community.”

Schedule, British Elite Junior Diving Championships 2021 In Memory of David Jenkins (27th-30th October)

Wednesday 27th October

  • Boys B 1m Springboard Prelims
  • Boys A 3m Springboard Prelims
  • Boys B 1m Springboard Final
  • Boys A 3m Springboard Final
  • Boys 13 & Under 3m Synchro
  • Girls 13 & Under 3m Synchro
  • Boys 14-19 3m Synchro
  • Girls 14-19 Platform Synchro

Thursday 28th October

  • Girls C 1m Springboard Prelims
  • Boys C Platform Prelims
  • Girls B 1m Springboard Prelims
  • Girls A Platform Prelims
  • Girls C 1m Springboard Final
  • Boys C Platform Final
  • Girls B 1m Springboard Final
  • Girls A Platform Final
  • Boys 14-19 Platform Synchro
  • Girls 14-19 3m Synchro

Friday 29th October

  • Girls C Platform Prelims
  • Boys C 3m Springboard Prelims
  • Girls A 1m Springboard Prelims
  • Boys B Platform Prelims
  • Girls B 3m Springboard Prelims
  • Boys A 1m Springboard Prelims
  • Boys C 3m Springboard Final
  • Girls C Platform Final
  • Girls A 1m Springboard Final
  • Girls B 3m Springboard Final
  • Boys A 1m Springboard Final
  • Boys B Platform Final

Saturday 30th October

  • Boys C 1m Springboard Prelims
  • Girls C 3m Springboard Prelims
  • Girls A 3m Springboard Prelims
  • Boys A Platform Prelims
  • Boys B 3m Springboard Prelims
  • Girls B Platform Prelims
  • Girls C 3m Springboard Final
  • Boys C 1m Springboard Final
  • Boys B 3m Springboard Final
  • Girls B Platform Final
  • Girls A 3m Springboard Final
  • Boys A Platform Final