This Gary Hunt Interview was originally published back in early 2013 when he was a two time Red Bull Cliff Diving World Champ. When finding it in our archives we felt it was so interesting the world needs to read it again.
Red Bull Cliff Diving World Champ
Since 2013 Gary has won four more titles, only missing out on a clean sweep in 2013 when he narrowly came second. Having won the last 3 competitions Gary is currently in second place in the 2017 event, so could win his seventh title. So this Gary Hunt interview from 2013 is well worth a read.
If you’ve not seen the Red Bull Cliff Diving World Series, you’ve really missed something special. This isn’t the polished and preened performances of highboard divers, it’s back-to-basics cliff diving spots and heart-in-mouth action from around the world.
UK Diver Gary Hunt took a fiercely contested title in 2012 after the last event in Oman. But which dive spot really had his heart thumping? What’s the vibe like in the camp before each event? And the briefs – we had to ask about the briefs…
Gary Hunt interview
Mark Pawlak grabbed an interview with Gary, here:
Would you describe yourself as a born thrill-seeker?
Out of the competitions I don’t do too many dare-devilish things, I think I have enough of a thrill from cliff diving that I prefer the peace and quite when I get home.
Where do you practice when you are not on tour?
I’m based in France now so I train with the French diving team in Paris as well as doing a diving show in Walygator theme park in Metz
Which spot on the tour tests the divers most?
This year the toughest place we dived was definitely Ireland. We were diving in the serpents lair on the Aaron Islands and the weather was atrocious. On top of this I had chicken pox at the time so just making it through the competition was a feat.
Other than the technical elements, does a destination affect your mindset in the build up to a competition?
The weather definitely plays on our minds a lot, you have to tell yourself to do the same thing as you always do. However stepping onto that platform in the wind and rain can be very daunting.
Do divers become more cautious with age, or more competent?
Experience in cliff diving is very important, young divers don’t tend to come into the sport and want to learn crazy dives straight of the bat. It takes time to build up your confidence on the platform. That said it only takes one bad landing to make you realise the risks that you’re taking. Crashing from 27m can really affect you psychologically.
Running take off was bit of a showstopper. Would you prefer to risk losing a competition just for the sake of pushing the boundaries?
I think if you’re pushing yourself and your sport then it’s all worth it. That is how a sport progresses once you see what other people can do you ask yourself why can’t I do that.
5,000 people saw you take your third successive Red Bull Cliff Diving World Title, what was the atmosphere like in the camp on the day?
Everyone was pretty nervous throughout the competition knowing that all would be decided on the results of that day. However we are all good friends so there were no hard feelings after it had all finished.
Heard other names for diving briefs? Last one I heard was ‘budgie smugglers’!
There are quite a few, we hear “banana hammock” every now and then.
Cliff diving can’t be your only love: What’s your 5 bucket-list must see or do activities?
I’m trying to learn the piano at the moment so that would be on the list, I would like to feel weightlessness so I’d definitely say yes to a trip into outer space.
Also seeing the curvature of the world would be amazing so maybe I could cross two things off in one trip.
Two of the countries that I’d love to explore are Brazil and Thailand both of which I’ll be able to do next year as they’ll hopefully be the two final stops in next years red bull cliff diving world series.
We hope you enjoyed this Gary Hunt Interview. If you’d like to find out whether the 6 time Red Bull Cliff Diving World Champ will make it title number 7 then head to Red Bull Cliff Diving.