Olympic Diver Anton Down-Jenkins Excitedly Announces Retirement

Photo Courtesy: UNC Athletics

Olympic Diver Anton Down-Jenkins Excitedly Announces Retirement

New Zealand Olympic diver Anton Down-Jenkins has announced his retirement from competition less than a year ahead of the Paris Olympics.

The native of Wellington made the announcement on social media last weekend.


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Down-Jenkins wrote in part:

“I recently decided to end my campaign through to the Paris 2024 Olympic Games and while I’m sure a lot of people are confused by the timing, it couldn’t feel more right.

“I’ve accomplished so much more than I ever thought possible as an athlete in the sport of diving. From qualifying for the Olympics to competing in an Olympic final, after Tokyo I had ticked off every single goal I had ever set out to achieve in sport, something not many people can say they ever do.”

Down-Jenkins is the two-time ACC Diver of the Year at the University of North Carolina. He was the first male New Zealand/Aotearoa diver to compete at the Olympics since 1984 and made a final to boot, finishing eighth in 3-meter springboard. (Down-Jenkins is Maori, a member of the Te Awara iwi.)

He competed at the World Aquatics Championships this summer in Fukuoka, Japan, finishing 34th on 3-meter. He’ll return to UNC as a graduate assistant, working with his longtime mentor Yadiel Gamboa.

Down-Jenkins wrapped up his college career by finishing fourth on 1-meter and ninth on 3-meter at the NCAA Championships last year. He was the ACC Diver of the year in 2021 and 2022. He placed sixth on 3-meter and eighth on 1-meter at NCAAs in 2022 after being fourth on 3-meter at NCAAs in 2021.

He swept both boards at ACCs in 2021, won 3-meter gold to go with 3-meter silver in 2022. He won silver in both in his fifth year of 2023.

Down-Jenkins started his diving career at the University of South Carolina, where he was a 3-time All-American.

Down-Jenkins, who competed for Wellington Diving Club and North Carolina Diving, dove at the 2018 Commonwealth Games as well as several FINA Grand Prix events.

“It’s been the most amazing experience having done all I have, and I am so so so grateful for all the support I’ve received and all the people I’ve met because of this sport,” he wrote.

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