A change in form saw our 2012 Olympic archer shoot her way into the South African record books at the weekend, writes Mark Etheridge.
Cape Town’s Hultzer hit the spot at the national championships held at Marks Park, Johannesburg where she took the national recurve title for a sixth consecutive time. She and her fellow Western Province archers dominated the nationals, taking the majority of the recurve titles.
“The tournament was well-planned and almost seamlessly run,” she told Road to Rio 2016 on Tuesday. “They even had perfect weather for the tournament.
Speaking of her personal triumph she said: “I took the bold step two months ago, of changing my form completely and was a bit nervous that it would not stand the pressure of a bit competition yet because under normal circumstances it takes many months to shift the muscle memory.”
In the final, Hultzer, who only took up the archery code comparatively late in life, took on newcomer Sandra Prinsloo from Gauteng.
“I got off to a slow start allowing her a 5-1 lead in a first to six points system. So there was no margin for error on my part. I clawed my way back to 5-5 for us to battle it out in a nail biting, one arrow, shoot-off to decide who took the gold. During those adrenelin-infused moments, in a game where adrenelin is the last thing you need, I had to wonder why I got myself into this situation,” she reflected.
“But as soon as its over I wanted to go back for more. This win gave me my sixth SA title in a row ÔÇô which I am told is a first. I was also the first female recurver in over 10 years to receive SANAA National Outdoor colours, which makes me very proud.”
Hultzer is also putting back into her code. “Another archer I am very proud of is Ludick Nel who I have been coaching for the last six months. In the junior men’s category he took both titles, but what was even more exciting was that his national championship score outstripped all the senior men’s as well. Keep an eye on this boy, he has talent.”
Certainly Nel will be looking to emulate his coach’s achievements and maybe even be on the lane with Team South Africa for Rio 2016.