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Favourites of high diving Jonathan Paredes, who has even conquered the Victoria Falls

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High diving will be one of the most spectacular disciplines of the 2017 FINA World Championships from 28 to 30 July in a very attractive environment on the banks of the Danube river, right in front of the Hungarian Parliament Building. The favourite of the men’s event will be defending champion Gary Hunt, but a brave Mexican, Jonathan Paredes is eager to dethrone the defending world champion in Budapest.

Jumping off a 10 meter platform already sounds quite scary for some, but how about doing it from a 27 meter one? That is exactly what competitors of the men’s high diving event do.

27-year-old Mexican Jonathan Paredes has upped the ante by accomplishing his highest cliff dive to date at Victoria Falls together with coach and idol Orlando Duque: 30m or 10-storeys into a waterfall – the craziest thing he says, he's done so far. (cliffdiving.redbull.com).

It was of course not his first step in his high diving career, the way had been very long from his home town Mexico City to the Mosi-oa-Tunya, as the locals call the beautiful waterfall at the border of Zambia and Zimbabwe.

The little Jonny took up traditional diving at age 6, and had competed in that sport until 2002, when he decided to change to high diving.

He took part in the Red Bull Cliff Diving World Series in 2011 for the first time, when he finished 11th in the overall competition. He had become more and more skilled an experienced, and in 2013 he grabbed 4th place behind three superstars of the series Artem Silchenko, Gary Hunt and Orlando Duque.

He finished 6th a year later, but in 2015 he won the bronze medal in overall behind Hunt and Duque. Last year Hunt became champion again, and Paredes became vice-champion.

The Mexican participated in the high diving  competition of the FINA World Championships in 2013 and in 2015 as well: he won the bronze medal in Barcelona, and he became silver medallist in Kazan. He has, however, two more big goals for the future: he wants to become the best high diver of the world and dreams of an Olympic participation in high diving in the future.

 

The men’s high diving competition will take place from 28 to 30 July on the famous Batthány Square in Budapest at the FINA World Championships.

JONATHAN PAREDES

Born: Mexico City (Mexico), 14 August, 1989

Medal record:

High diving, cliff diving:

World vice-champion (2015 Kazan); World bronze medallist (2013 Barcelona)

Red Bull Cliff Diving World Series: silver medallist (2016); bronze medallist (2015)