JUST a couple of days after James Heatly won Scotland’s first Commonwealth diving medal in 60 years, another has come along in quick time, and Grace Reid went event better with a magnificent gold in the women’s 1m springboard.
The 21-year-old from Edinburgh, who won world synchro silver with Tom Daley last year, put together a brilliant set of five dives to win the competition with a combined score of 275.30 and become Scotland’s first woman to win a Commonwealth diving medal.
Reid, who made her Games debut aged just 14 in Delhi eight years ago, was in tears of joy as it was confirmed she had won Scotland’s ninth gold medal of the Games. It was Scotland’s first diving gold since Sir Peter Heatly, grandfather of James, in 1958.
“I just loved every second of that,” she said. “That was unbelievable. My primary goal was to go out and actually enjoy what I do, so job done as far as I’m concerned.
“Seeing as this was my third Commonwealth Games, I actually came in with quite a lot of pressure on my shoulders.
“I haven’t been sleeping and eating as much as normal because I have been really nervous. Experience came into play and I went into autopilot this evening.”
Heatly, who won bronze in the men’s event on Wednesday, came down from the stands to embrace his longtime training partner and roared: “You’re amazing.”
A former pupil of of George Watson’s College and University of Edinburgh student, Reid now goes in her favourite 3m springboard event tomorrow.
“This is a huge confidence boost,” she said. “I guess I knew this was possible but I didn’t want to think about it during the competition. I’m just so proud.”
Reid led after the first two rounds before dropping back to silver position after her third dive. The Scot left her two more difficult dives, both 2.6, to the end of her programme and, after scoring 8s for her best total of 59.80 in the penultimate round with a Forward 1½ Somersaults 2 Twists, carried a ten-point buffer into the last.
A solid Forward 2½ Somersaults scored 54.60 and it was clear that the gold was hers, Reid, however, kept her composure until final confirmation before the emotion was released.
The Australian pair of Georgia Sheehan and Esther Qin took silver and bronze. England’s Kat Torrance looked well set for a medal before a costly legs bend in her final dive saw her fall to fifth.