When David Boudia competes in the 10 meter platform as an individual and in the 10 meter platform synchro with partner Nick McCrory at the Summer Olympics in London, he’ll be working towards being the first American to earn a medal in the sport in a dozen years.
Laura Wilkinson is the most recent American diver to medal in the Olympics when she stunned the world with her gold medal performance in the 10 meter platform competition in Sydney back in 2000. The last medal won by an American male in Olympic competition was Mark Lenzi’s bronze medal in the 3 meter springboard event in the 1996 Summer Olympics held in Atlanta.
Boudia has been a member of the U.S. National Team since 2005. This will be his second Olympic Games; he finished 10th in the platform competition in 2008. In Beijing, Boudia recorded the highest degree of difficulty in his dives of any of the competitors in the finals. He teamed with Thomas Finchum to finish fifth in the synchro platform event as well. Boudia competed in the 2004 U.S. Olympic Trials and finished third; the top two divers are selected to the Olympic team.
Boudia has claimed three medals at the World Championships in his career, taking a bronze medal in 2007 and a silver medal in 2009 in the synchro platform, and following that up with a breakthrough performance in the 2011 event, winning silver in the platform. That silver came as a shock in the diving world, as the Chinese routinely win most of, if not all, of the available medals in competition. Boudia’s performance made him the first American in 25 years to medal in the event during the World Championships. In addition to those performances, Boudia won gold in the synchro platform event in the 2007 Pan Am Games.
Boudia is one of the U.S.’s most accomplished divers, both in international competition and collegiately. While attending Purdue University, Boudia was named the 2011 Big Ten Conference Athlete of the Year for all sports. He won six NCAA championships as a member of the Boilermakers and is set to graduate next year with a degree in communications. He has been a national champion on 16 occasions in his career as well.
Boudia is engaged to his fiancée, Sonnie Brand and has not ruled out a return for the 2016 Olympic Games. After breaking a growth plate in his foot, he was forced to end his gymnastics career. He took a diving lesson from U.S. National team coach John Wingfield and that’s all it took to get him hooked. He began his diving career in 2000 and hasn’t looked back since.
While Boudia’s silver medal in the World Championships last year was a positive sign for the Americans in their quest for their first medal in a dozen years, the fact remains that the Chinese claimed every gold medal in the 2011 World Championships. The Chinese have proceeded to represent themselves well in recent Olympic Games as well, which makes the chances for Boudia to step in and claim a medal more remote.
Boudia will get his chances to medal, beginning on July 30 with the synchro platform and again on August 10 for the 10 meter platform competition. How do you think he will do?