The best view of the Red Bull Cliff Diving World Series is probably the one from the edge of the diving board, but if you haven’t the stomach for staring down at the water 27 metres below, the sponsors have devised a different way of capturing the essence of the event.
In harness with a crop of the country’s leading users of the popular Instagram photo-sharing site, Red Bull has stitched together more than 21,000 mobile phone photos of the sixth stage of the series at the Blue Lagoon in Pembrokeshire, turning them into a two-minute video.
From inside the hordes of awe-inspired fans to the starting positions of the competition’s daredevils high above the water, the unusual approach uses the growing popularity of social photography as an alternative way of bringing the action to life.
The event itself, which was returning to these shores for the first time, was won by Gary Hunt, the reigning three-time champion on his return to the United Kingdom after his world high-diving silver medal in Barcelona in July.
Hunt pipped Artem Silchenko, his nearest rival, and Orlando Duque, the man who won gold in Barcelona, to the top spot in front of his home crowd after pulling off an extraordinary dive list, which included a triple quad, consisting of four twists and three somersaults, to rack up 510.90 points after four rounds of diving.
Hunt now has a 120-point lead in the 14-man competition with just one of the eight stages remaining as he goes in search of his fourth consecutive title.
Blake Aldridge and Mat Cowen, Hunt’s British compatriots, finished eighth and ninth respectively under the eye of five judges heading into the final stop point in Thailand later this month, after the penultimate leg of the championship in Brazil was cancelled due to harsh weather conditions.