One of Ireland’s potential star Olympians in 2020 has secured a personal sponsorship deal with Dublin Port Company that has already changed his world for the better.
The Company is one of Dublin’s major infrastructure entities and it has been a long term supporter of sport through local partnerships but this is a first to step into the world of elite sport.
“It is a very worthwhile anomaly to what we have done before but all the more interesting and exciting for that,” said Dublin Port CEO speaking to Sport for Business yesterday.
“We have traditionally supported the community sporting groups that are part and parcel of the lives of the people who have made Dublin Port what it is today.”
“We gave use of land to local GAA club Clan na Gael Fontenoy way back in time and we back the Leinster open sea swimming Club who run the Liffey Swim as well as the local sailing and rowing clubs that are on our shore step.”
“Ollie’s performance in Rio was outstanding and to meet him in person he is an exceptional individual.”
“His sport is a lonely one, up on the board and the preparation needed requires immense time and dedication. When the opportunity arose to support him it just felt right.”
“Supplying him with financial support and a fully expensed car has given him the freedom to focus on his sport and also to get away from the intensity, hopefully helping him to achieve his full potential.”
That potential first became obvious to an Irish audience when he qualified for the Olympic Final and he is now on his way towards a second World Championship in China next month having just achieved a new Irish record and a haul of medals at prestigious tournaments across the world.
“I’m in a good place at the moment and my big dive, the one that scores the most points has been my strongest since the turn of the year.”
“Going to a Worlds in good form off the board and in my head is a great way to be.”
Having access to transport has enabled him to ‘get a life’ and also to start a course in Film and Television studies at Dublin Institute of technology where he occasionally bumps into Paralympian Ellen Keane.
“Ellen has been great. She let me film her in an interview as part of my coursework and was very patient.”
“We are both in the water, competing at the highest level and it is good to have that bond as well as the other friendships I have built up through going back to education.”
Dingley grew up in Harrogate in England but his Grandmother is from Cork, born on Spike Island in the middle of Cork Harbour ironically. He trains at the National Aquatic Centre and speaks with real warmth about the support he recieves through the Institute of Sport on the Campus as well.
“The partnership with Dublin Port came about through my agent Sinead Galvin who has been a real boost to work with and who really understands what it is that we know and more importantly don’t know away from our training routines.”
Dingley’s role with Dublin Port will be to tell his story and to engage with local kids showing them that anything is possible.
There will be the potential to bring some out to the National Aquatic Centre and to introduce them to what is possible with hard work and effort.
It promises to be a partnership that can really deliver and we look forward to following it as it develops.
Image Credit: Conor McCabe Photography