Boudia Is Back: 3 Time Olympian Makes Comeback At Winter Trials

US Swimming and diving Day 4, Mens 10 meter semifinals at the IUPUI Natatorium in Indianapolis Indiana on June 21st 2016.
Photo Courtesy: Marc Lebryk

By Erin Keaveny, Swimming World Contributor.

Three-time Olympian David Boudia made his first appearance in a national competition since 2016 on Thursday, December 21, at the USA Diving Winter Trials.

“Going into this event, it was more of a stepping stone to see where we were at nationally,” said Boudia.

It has been a little over a year since Boudia announced he was coming out of retirement. And while his eleven international medals, including an Olympic gold, are from ten-meter platform, Boudia has switched events.

“It’s the perfect transition for me coming off of three Olympcis,” said Boudia. “Switching it up has kept me motivated, it adds a freshness. I’m just enjoying training again”

Before the men’s three-meter springboard started, Boudia knew competition was going to be fierce. While expecting to be a contender, his degree of difficulty was not as high as his competitors, leaving him at a disadvantage.

He needed to finish in at least third or fourth place to be in contention for the upcoming national and international season.

Boudia was in third by ten points after prelims. By the second round of finals, he had dropped down to fifth.

After Boudia’s fourth dive in finals, an inward three-and-a-half tuck, he thought any chance of medalling was gone. The dive only scored 57.80 points.

However, he did not lose focus.

“I did what I’ve done my entire career,” said Boudia, “not focus on what my competitors were doing, but what I can control, which is my six dives.”

In the fifth round, Boudia performed the highest scoring dive of the meet. His reverse three-and-a-half tuck earned 94.50 points, the same score he received just a few weeks ago at the FINA Gold Coast Grand Prix.

“It’s turning into a dive I can depend on,” said Boudia. “It stirs up some confidence going into the international season.”

Finally, Boudia competed a reverse one-and-a-half with three-and-a-half twists in the sixth round that received the third highest score of the meet.

His final two dives solidified his gold.

This win qualifies Boudia to compete for the 2019 FINA Grand Prix. 

“Those dives are world class dives,” said Boudia. “The goal is to step up at least two or three more on my list to be competitive on the international level.”

As part of that goal, Boudia hopes to have inward, back, and front dives with higher degrees of difficulty ready to compete in the next three months.

“Now that I have a good foundation to work off of, a lot of work needs to be done.”

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