Untouched rocks, monoliths, iconic landmarks and buildings. This purest extreme sports competition hits new waters in its fifth year and determines a new champion during eight challenging competitions across Europe, Asia and North and South America.
And on 13th and 14th of September, ten of the world’s top divers and four wildcard entrants will compete at Abereiddy’s famous Blue Lagoon as part of the Red Bull Cliff Diving Championship.
What is real cliff diving
In theory cliff diving is jumping from high cliffs into water.
Platforms are used in competition to allow the athletes to do the most difficult dives.
Diving directly from the rocks limits the diver to easier dives. In competitions artistic moves are performed during the dive and judged by a jury identifying the winner.
The discipline has a very long tradition and was “invented” in Maui, Hawaii, back in the 1770s. Within years cliff diving emerged from an initiation tactics for warriors as a competitive sport. However, in the past cliff divers were usually characterized as world-weary kamikazes and the sport was erroneously considered a mere tourist attraction from Acapulco. Cliff diving is far more than Acapulco or a pleasing background for lovely TV commercials; it is a sport, which places the highest demands on mind and body. Many high divers see their discipline as a further development of the Olympic diving competition, which most of them exercised before changing to cliff diving. Through continuous competitions around the globe wide acceptance for this extremely demanding discipline is being established and the athletes are receiving the respect they deserve.
In competitive cliff diving safety plays an important role. Thus, certain regulations have been defined, such as the height limit (28m) and the water depth (at least 5m), as well as emergency scuba divers and paramedic units on site.
Why did Red Bull create a Cliff Diving World Series?
In the past Red Bull used to organise cliff diving competitions always in direct collaboration with the divers. The divers’ feedback and the spectators’ enthusiasm lead to a natural development of single events to a world series with strong locations and the world’s best athletes, providing them with a platform to spread this pure extreme sport all over the world.
When did the World Series start?
The Red Bull Cliff Diving World Series started in 2009 and after four seasons, the championship can look back at 28 successful competitions, more than 460.000 spectators and 1.650 international media on-site, including live broadcasts.
Since the introduction of the World Series the sport of cliff diving has pushed its limits to new heights and the athletes have increased the level of high diving to an extent, which was not even thought of a few years ago.
Why is Red Bull Cliff Diving a high-class sports competition?
The best cliff divers in the world participate in these competitions and the whole set up (at least 26.5 metres or higher and at least 6 stops per year) challenge the divers not only physically but also mentally. The impact of hitting the water after 27 metres of free fall is nine times harder than jumping from a 10m tower. If you are not perfectly trained and experienced you risk your life.
What is the Format of the Competition?
The Red Bull Cliff Diving World Series follows the traditional high diving format and is a mix of the rules from FINA and HDA. Each competition has four rounds in 2 days. Divers hand in their four planned dives the day before the 1st day of competition – dives shall consist of two required dives of a maximum degree of difficulty (DD) of 3.8 and two optional dives assigned a degree of difficulty computed from the HDA (High Diving Alliance) table. These dives are judged by five high diving judges. The highest and lowest score are discarded; the remaining three scores are added and multiplied by the degree of difficulty to provide the total score for each dive.
Ahead of each competition a draw will determine the diving order for the first round. The first round of dives will feature one required dive of a fixed DD of 3.8, the results of which will determine the ranking for the head-to-head. 1st goes against 14th, 2nd against 13th, etc.
In the head-to-head rounds, all divers do one required dive (DD 3.8.) and one optional dive. 7 winners will advance from the head-to-head. There will also be one lucky loser (the diver with the highest score of all losers). The 8 remaining divers will do one final optional dive. The order will be determined by the points accumulated from the first 3 rounds of dives and will be in reverse order. The winner of any individual tour stop will be the diver with the highest points total from all 4 dives.
Winner of the Red Bull Cliff Diving World Series will be the athlete with the hig