Red Bull Cliff Diving Boston 2012: Jumping 95 Feet Off a Boston Museum

11 Sep

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Making the Daring Leap 95 Feet over Boston Harbor

Boston had the distinct honor of being the only US stop for the Red Bull Cliff Diving World Series. On Aug. 25, the best high platform divers from across the world continued their battle to be named the best (and in my opinion, craziest) in the world. The location couldn’t have been more perfect: divers made the leap from a custom built 95-foot platform on the roof of the Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA) into the harbor.

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47,000 spectators and hundreds of boats came out for the competition, but luckily I stumbled upon a great viewing spot while on my search for beer. Speaking of beer, the $6 draught options were Harpoon IPA, Harpoon Summer, Coors Light, and Blue Moon. Harpoon was obviously the way to go.

$9 Red Bull cocktails were also being served, but I couldn’t bring myself to violate my deeply seated beliefs that energy drinks and liquor should never be combined, even for “research” sake.

Orlando Duque

Orlando Duque

Another nice surprise was the appearance of Greg Louganis as a judge, one of the most decorated divers in history. I love his Twitter bio: “If your looking for the guy who hit his head on the diving springboard in the 1988 Olympics, you found him. Namaste, Greg.” I only wish they had let him do the commentary instead of “Motorsports Marketing Manager” Dustin Webster who was obviously jacked up on way too many Red Bulls.

The Divers

The Competitors

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My mere words cannot match the intensity of the jaw-dropping athleticism and bravery of these competitors. With divers reaching 90kph, splashing head first is not an option. If you over or under rotate just a few degrees at such heights, you can get seriously hurt.

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One highlight of the event was the premier of a new dive by Blake Aldridge (UK):  a back armstand 2.5 somersaults with 4 twists free.

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Another highlight was seeing the 46 year old Ukranian diver Slava Polyeshchuk reach the finals in his last professional appearance.

“Honestly, I feel so happy to be here among my friends, everything else just isn’t very important to me,” explained Polyeshchuk. “I know that my dive worked out pretty well today, but still, at some point you have to stop being ridiculous. I think this moment is about to arrive.”

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Two other takeaways from my hours of watching diving while drinking beer: the sheer intensity on the divers’ faces is inspiring, and damn, I need to spend more time at the gym.

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Red Bull Air Force

Red Bull Air Force Member Miles Daisher Opens the Show

Opening the festivities was a crowd-pleasing appearance by the Red Bull Air Force. After watching the “soldier” descend 9,000 ft, I was tempted to write a policy memo recommending that the US Air Force draft these daredevils – North Korea wouldn’t know what hit them.

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Red Bull Gives Miles Daisher Wings

Boston Results:

1) Gary Hunt (UK)

2) Orlando Duque (Colombia)

3) David Colturi (USA)

4) Arlem Silchenko (Russia)

5) Steven LoBue (USA)

6) Jonathan Paredes (Mexico)

8) Slava Polyeshchuk (Ukraine)

Here’s a nice little video recap put together by Red Bull:

Lenny Kravitz

While I was looking forward to the event, I must admit that I was still surprised at how much I enjoyed it. We stayed until the bitter end – but the day still had another surprise in store. As we left the event, a stranger informed us that there was a free Lenny Kravitz concert only a few blocks away. I’m not sure how far out of my way I would go to see Lenny Kravitz, but I can tell you that it’s at least three blocks. He did not disappoint, especially his mesh see-through shirt straight out of his 90’s heyday. I can only assume he has a closet full of them, ranging from fine mesh to slutty see-through.

I’ve only lived in Cambridge a few weeks now, but every time I’ve made the journey into Boston, I’ve been surprised and amazed by the unique things I’ve stumbled across. Can’t wait to see what’s next!

2 Responses to “Red Bull Cliff Diving Boston 2012: Jumping 95 Feet Off a Boston Museum”

  1. the Minty September 13, 2012 at 2:37 pm #

    Amazing pictures!! Great post!

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