Meaghan Benfeito & Caeli McKay took home bronze in the 10m synchronized platform event followed by Jennifer Abel and Melissa Citrini-Beaulieu earning silver in the 3m synchronized springboard event at the season opener of the FINA Diving World Series in Japan.
Abel and Citrini-Beaulieu earned a silver medal in the 3m synchro event after totalling 302.97 points. The duo posted their highest score on their fourth dive scoring 73.47 points. Abel and Citrini-Beaulieu entered their fifth and final dive in third place but climbed up to acquire silver after posting a final dive score of 69.30. Abel is a three-time Olympian and bronze medallist at London 2012 in the 3m synchro event. Abel and Citrini-Beaulieu ranked second overall on the World Series circuit last year.
“It’s been a really long off-season for us,” said Abel, of having not competed internationally in almost nine months. “Usually we always compete so we know exactly where we are and what we have to improve but now since we didn’t compete since June, I didn’t know if I was doing well, I didn’t feel as good as I feel right now so it was pretty hard mentally to manage that.”
Benfeito and McKay captured bronze in the 10m synchro event with a total of 311.70 points. The bronze medallists had a high of 74.88 points on their last dive which kept them in the third place they held the entire event. Benfeito is a three-time bronze medallist in diving at the Olympics, earning her most recent medals at Rio 2016 in the 10m synchronized and 10m platform events.
“This year we made it a goal to really just focus on ourselves and I think that’s what’s really helping us perform better,” said Benfeito of the now two-year partnership, “It was really the first competition that I was able to really focus on my own dives and not have to worry about Caeli, so that was something that I really enjoyed and now that I know that it works it’s something that we’re going to work on even more next week.”
François Imbeau-Dulac and Philippe Gagné just missed the podium in the men’s 3m synchro event finishing fourth.
Canada continues their journey on the World Series circuit this weekend in Sagamihara, Japan before heading to Beijing next week. The FINA Diving World Series comes to Montreal on April 26. All FINA Diving World Series results can be found here.