Diver Jennifer Abel begins big stretch at Canada Cup - InfoNews

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Diver Jennifer Abel begins big stretch at Canada Cup

April 03, 2019 - 1:29 PM

CALGARY - Canada's Jennifer Abel hopes to make another big splash at the world aquatics championships this summer.

The diver continues her preparations for what could be a record-setting international showing this week at the Canada Cup in Calgary.

The 27-year-old from Laval, Que., is tied with diver Alex Despatie and swimmer Ryan Cochrane for most medals (eight) by a Canadian in the history of the world aquatics championships. She hopes to break the tie this summer in South Korea.

"Obviously if I'm on the podium I'll be extremely happy because we'll get to secure our spot for myself or in synchro for the (2020) Olympics so I'll be even more happy for that the being the most decorated on the world stage," said Abel.

"I'm quite excited to go there."

The Canada Cup, featuring 132 divers from 20 countries over four days, offers Abel another chance to test herself prior to bigger meets ahead.

She's also looking ahead to next year's Olympics in Tokyo, which would mark Abel's fourth Summer Games appearance.

After winning bronze with Emilie Heymans in synchro in 2012, she just missed the podium twice in 2016 in Rio, finishing fourth in synchro with Pamela Ware and notching the same result individually in the three-metre event.

"What I've learned from Rio is I can always set myself up for medals so if I'm there in Tokyo ... do each dive as good as I can and to give the best performance ever," said Abel.

Abel said the Canada Cup offers younger divers a chance to learn from veterans of the sport.

"This is how we all started and I think it's important to learn from the competition and watch how the veterans compete," she said.

Abel, of course, will be using the competition for a different reason.

"For me, it's always important to compete to learn and get even stronger mentally," said Abel. "At my level, it's more mentally than physically so it's going to be really good preparation for the preliminary's of the world championship. ... It's going to be good for me to get back into it and prepare myself well before each dive."

Competing at home also is a bonus.

"It's always fun because we get to know the new teams and new faces and the younger athletes on the team. It's always fun to be home and get our own crowd cheering for us," said Abel.

Penny Joyce, chief operating officer for Diving Canada, said she believes this is the biggest field for the event since it started in 1969. Canada leads the way with 21 divers.

The event begins Thursday with the finals on Saturday and Sunday.

News from © The Canadian Press, 2019
The Canadian Press

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