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Trevor Simpson targeting a medal at European Masters Diving Championships
TREVOR Simpson is targeting a podium finish when he contests his first European Masters Diving Championships this week.
The Langdon Hills diver gets underway in The Netherlands today in the 3m springboard event.
And he is aiming to be in the top three in that event, the 1m springboard and the platform over the next four days.
“How I get on depends on the other divers and how desperate they are to win,” said Simpson, who competed for Britain at the 1976 Montreal Olympics.
“But I think I should be able to get on the podium.
“I feel OK, but I have not been able to as much training as I would like to have done, but I have been keeping fit at Club Kingswood in Basildon.”
Simpson, who is 62, will be competing in the 60-64 years old section in Eindhoven, where he will be competing against up to eight other divers in the three disciplines.
He has competed against many of them before, including fellow Briton Jim McNally, but will be facing some, such as Dutch diver Yadollah Bashtbavi, for the first time.
Simpson, who is a member and trains at Southend Diving at Garon Park, said he expects McNally, Bashtbavi and Belgian Giovanni Dolcimascolo to be among his rivals for the medals.
“Jim is always there or thereabouts and Giovanni is a bit eratic and sometimes gets it wrong with dives that have a higher tariff,” he explained.
“I have seen Yadollah dive before but never competed against him. He has plenty of experience so I will have to see how I get on.”
Simpson will be sticking with a tried and tested set of dives, although he is planning to introduce some new ones for the Masters World Championship in Montreal next year.
He has to perform six dives in each of the disciplines at the Europeans but cannot repeat any of the dives. There is also no tariff limit on the dives.
It is the first time that Simpson has competed at the Europeans.
He competed at the 2010 World Championships but snapped his Achilles tendon which kept him out of the 2011 Europeans. But he returned to action at last year’s Worlds.
Simpson has also been using his experience competing at the Olympics and Commonwealth Games to help coach the next generation of divers at Southend Diving.
“I have been doing a bit of coaching for Bill (Clark) and Damian (Ball) at Southend which has been nice,” he added. “It’s nice to put a little something back into the sport.”