Tuesday, March 09, 2010

Diving Grand Prix in Rostock, Germany and Moscow, Russia

On the 21st of February I was off to my first internationals competitions for the year. The Australian national squad were first off to Rostock, Germany for the 55th International Spingertag, followed by the Spring Swallows competition in Moscow, Russia.
We flew with Emirates and our flight to Dubai was on the massive A380! The seats were bigger and more comfortable and the 10” screens were pretty good too. The next flight was to Hamburg and then we had a 2 hour drive to Rostock. This was my third visit to Rostock but my first visit during the winter! It was lots of fun with all the snow around, there were plenty of snowball fights. Poor mailman.

I was competing in only the women’s 3m synchronised with Sharleen, which happened to be on my birthday. Just before we marched out prior to the event the organiser pulled me out the front and announced my birthday to the entire crowd - it was very embarrassing! There were 8 teams in our competition and we were lucky last. I was really happy with our performance especially the new dive front 3.5 pike which went really well! We finished in 2nd place behind the Chinese girls and in 3rd place were the Italian girls.

That night we briefly went to the farewell function as we had an early start in the morning.

The bus picked us up at 5:45am and drove us back to Hamburg airport. This time we were flying Aeroflot to Moscow – the flight was a little scary, especially because we knew they didn’t have the best aviation record. Once in Russia we hit heaps of traffic and it took ages to get to our hotel. Finally we arrived at the Renaissance hotel and it was beautiful. There's Anabelle playing in the snow out the front of the hotel.

The pool in Moscow was built for the 1980 Olympics, I really liked this pool, the boards were nice and bouncy.

The women’s 3m synchronised event was on the Thursday night, this time there were 7 pairs and we were number 5. I was pretty happy with my performance, it was only my last dive that was a bit off, which was disappointing because it was pretty between us and the Chinese. Again we finished 2nd behind the Chinese, with Ukraine in 3rd.

On the Friday and Saturday mornings I was able to go out and explore Moscow. It was so cold those mornings, with the temperature not getting over minus 6. I went to the Red Square, the Kremlin and St Basil’s, I also found some time for shopping and bought an awesome pair of boots! The first photo below is the head offices of the KGB. Next is the ice rink in the Red Square. Also their is the Bell of Tsar and the Cannon of Tsar.

Our planes wings needed to be de-iced the wings of our plane before we left Moscow!

The Australian team did really well finishing with a gold, three silvers and three bronze medals!