Louis Daignault (ISN)
July 28, 2013, BARCELONA (ISN) – Canada retained its status as an international diving power this past week at the FINA World Championships earning a silver and two bronze medals. In addition to winning medals at five straight Olympics, Canada has now stepped on the podium in seven consecutive world championships.
”We are always innovating, always developing methods and ways to get better,” said Michel Larouche, the former head coach of Montreal’s famed club CAMO and now Diving Canada’s national head coach. ”Our sport is very healthy with committed athletes and coaches who offer great programs. So it’s a combination of many factors that have made us successful.”
Pamela Ware of Beloeil, Que., emerged as the newest star on the Canadian team reaching the podium twice at her first world championships. She won bronze in both the individual three-metre and the synchro three-metre with Jennifer Abel of Laval. Roseline Filion of Laval and Meaghan Benfeito of Montreal took the silver on women’s 10-metre synchro.
”We knew Pamela had the potential to get on the podium individually so it is not a complete surprise,” said Larouche. ”She was consistent and put some definition in her dives. That made the difference. A big thing for me was that she set a personal best score. That rarely happens at the world championships.”
Larouche added that Canada now had a solid 1-2 punch on women’s three-metre with Ware and Abel. Abel, 21, was a bronze medallist in 2011 and finished fifth this week.
While the Canadian men were shutout of the podium, Larouche is not worried. Riley McCormick of Victoria and François Imbeau-Dulac were eliminated in the three-metre prelims.
”François has the dives to be with the best but it’s been a tough season for him with injuries,” Larouche said. ”There’s no doubt he can comeback from this. Riley is one of our top tower divers and we thought he did very well in the springboard this year.”
China dominated the medals with 13 including nine gold while Canada, Russia and Mexico followed with three apiece.