Divers were a little thin on the ground at the Kilbirnie Aquatic Centre today, but that didn’t spoil the afternoon for the very vocal Team Aqualicious, who were there to support team member Nick Pirie.
Brisbane-based Nick was the only male diver not from Sydney, a tidbit that made him a favourite with the loud and proud crowd.
His answers to questions from emcee Steven Oates also earned him a few fans. When Steven asked him what his favourite dive is, Nick replied, “inward tuck”, before an Aqualicious swimmer yelled out, “He’s a drag queen!” in response.
“This is my third competition but my last as a novice,” says Nick. “I don’t think there’s anyone else in my age group here so I think I’ll be able to come away with a medal.
“It’s nice to know that we’re all in the running for medals, but it would definitely be nicer to have some more competition!”
Nick is frank about his reasons for crossing over from swimming to diving: “Matthew Mitcham – Olympian.” And what a role model to have. Matthew Mitcham is not only out and proud, but also holds the record for the highest single-dive score in Olympic history. He also happens to be an extremely attractive man.
Nick is well on his way to being a decorated athlete – even before he received a silver at today’s dive meet, he had already picked up a bronze, two silvers and a gold in swimming.
“Not everyone comes to diving from swimming,” he says. “A lot of people come to diving from gymnastics – you see that when they’re out there.
“I dive with a club back home and there are a lot of younger divers in the group. I must say that I wish I’d started diving at a younger age – there are some really good divers in my group and they’re much younger than me.”
After Outgames finishes, Nick will be focusing on Australian nationals in 2012.
“There may not have been many divers here at Outgames, but it’s really great practice; I’m grateful for the experience!”
Hannah JV, www.gayexpress.co.nz
Advocate cover courtesy of The Advocate