The Portuguese islands of the Azores, 1,300km adrift of the European mainland, in the midst of the Atlantic, will witness a World Series first during the next stop of the 2012 competition on Saturday, July 21...
For the first ever Red Bull Cliff Diving event held on Portuguese territory, the small islet of Vila Franca do Campo will allow the athletes to perform their two required dives straight off the rocks, in the World Series' most natural cliff diving environment to date.
Never before has a competition taken place directly off the cliff. Only for the third and fourth round will the athletes return to the 27m platform in order to complete their most difficult dives.
Orlando Duque and Gary Hunt have won the first two stops in windswept and chilly conditions, in France and Norway, but with 2012 qualifier and overall Series leader Steven LoBue pushing hard for a first win after two second-placed finishes, the competition has never been more intense.
Among the fight between the more established athletes you will also find Ukrainian wildcard Anatoliy Shabotenko who has made the cut for the final in the first two competitions and gets a third chance to prove his talent in the Azores. Todor Spasov, from Bulgaria, is the final wildcard and completes the field of 13 athletes from 10 different countries.
1,369km west of the Portuguese mainland, the Azores archipelago comprises nine islands spread over three groups. The venue for the third of seven stops in the World Series is located around one kilometre from the coastline of the biggest of the islands, Sao Miguel, and came about following the collapse of a former volcano.
Saturday's competition will start at 9.45am local time. Planning to attend? Visit redbullcliffdiving.com's event page for more information