Discover Masters World: Olga Larissa Vargas (MEX)

Masters

Two months ago, Olga Vargas from Mexico did not know whether she would be able to compete at the FINA Masters World championships or not. Like some others, the economical aspect almost jeopardised her Masters participation. Today, the 30-year-old leaves with happy memories from Gothenburg having bagged two gold medals, one in Solo and another in Duet, with swimming partner and long-time friend Nara Lorena Falcon.

Background: an early start
As a matter of fact, Olga’s success finds its roots in a former elite career, which stretches from 1997 to 2004. Before getting started with synchro at 11, Olga had already six years of gymnastics under her belt!

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YOG Singapore 2010, Day 11: Aquatics programme closes with last gold for China in diving

Youth Olympic Games

China closed the Aquatics programme of these Youth Olympic Games with the gold of Bo Qiu in the men’s 10m platform. If we consider Swimming and Diving (the only FINA disciplines represented in the competition), it was China’s 15th gold, after earning 11 titles in the pool (out of 34 races at the Singapore Sports School) and all the four events contested in Diving (at the Toa Payoh Swimming Complex). Following his triumph in the men’s 3m springboard (China brought the same athletes for the 3m springboard and 10m platform: among men, Bo Qiu, and in the women’s field, Jiao Liu, also victorious on two occasions), Qiu got an easy win in the 10m platform, concluding first with a total of 673.50. The final was marked by a 20-minute break due to a malfunctioning in the lighting towers (between the fourth and fifth round of dives).

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Discover Masters World: Lucia Molnarova & Veronika Strapekova (SVK)

Masters

One of these 13th FINA Masters World Championships’ latest sensations was revealed with Slovakia making its first appearance in the Team and Combination events at world level. Overall, the Slovakian ‘mermaids’ proved themselves tremendous performers, picking up three golds in Solo (swum by Lucia Molnarova), Team and Combination and one silver medal in Duet (swum by Lucia and Veronika Strapekova) in Gothenburg (SWE).

Lucia, 26, and Veronika, 32, who both swim for the Iuventa Bratislava in Slovakia, explain what lies behind their success: “Some teammates have swum at very high level”, says Veronika, who represented Slovakia at the 2004 Olympics in Athens. As to Lucia, she swam at Open level until 2006.

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YOG Singapore 2010, Day 10: Rain is no pain for unstoppable Jiao Liu (CHN)

Youth Olympic Games

It was theoretically not an easy final for Jiao Liu. The Chinese star had won the 10m platform in Day 1 of the diving programme at the Toa Payoh Swimming Complex of these Youth Olympic Games, and surely wanted to demonstrate that she was the best female diver of the competition by triumphing also in the 3m springboard. Then, came the natural elements, a pouring rain during the final’s time, which is always something that disturbs in a variable extent the athletes. Finally, Liu was under the direct scrutiny of her compatriot and best female diver of history, China’s Jingjing Guo, witnessing the competition from the stands.

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Discover Masters World: Mayumi Ochiai (JPN)

Masters

Mayumi Ochiai (JPN) - credit: Sarah ChiarelloFinding a pool nearby in Japan is quite a challenge and Mayumi Ochiai is a case in point. Living in the crowded centre of Tokyo, the 28-year-old takes half an hour in her car to get to the pool where she practices synchronised swimming twice a week, between two and four hours, with her coach.

But distance is no obstacle for Mayumi, who came all the way to Gothenburg (SWE) to compete and enjoy her third World Masters experience, after Stanford (USA) in 2006 and Perth (AUS) in 2008.

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