Commonwealth Games sensation and New Zealand record-holder Julia Ratcliffe has joined the CurraNZ athlete team.
The 26-year-old hammer thrower from Hamilton has her sights set on qualification for the Tokyo Olympics in what she is calling her ‘Revenge Tour’.
Having recently discovered CurraNZ, she recognises the brilliant advantages of our super-supplement, which was recommended by her High Performance Sport New Zealand nutritionist.
Julia has represented New Zealand on 12 occasions, including the IAAF World Championships and winning gold and silver at the last two Commonwealth Games, but narrowly missed out on qualifying for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.
“I’ve had a lot of success and haven’t seen a lot of failure in my life so I think not making Rio was actually good for me in the long run.
“I’m calling this the revenge tour as I’m working towards Tokyo and I’m loving every minute of it.”
Last weekend, Julia put together a stunning series of throws at the Porritt Classics meet in Hamilton. She broke her own NZ record not once, but twice, with a new record of 72.35m (beating her previous best 71.39m) and came just 15cm of automatic Olympic qualification.
An Economics graduate from Princeton University, Julia mixes a high-powered career as a Reserve Bank analyst with sport. Last year, she returned from a year off hammer by setting a new Oceania record.
She says: “I’d had a lot of injuries and being a full-time athlete is full on so I just wanted to be a normal person for a bit,” said Ratcliffe.
It seemed the break did her the power of good. Ratcliffe threw a 64-centimetre P.B. and Oceania Record of 71.39m which saw her win the competition and qualify for the 2019 World Champs.
With Tokyo next, Ratcliffe needs to throw just over a metre further to hit the automatic Olympic qualification distance.
“We’re excited about training and what we can achieve.
“The goal is to be at 75m at Tokyo. That seems like a big step up but I’ve just been getting stronger and stronger over the past few years so I just need to put that into my technique.
“Having time off has got me fresh and motivated and bringing real mental focus to training.”
With high training demands to reach peak form for Tokyo, Julia has found CurraNZ is coming into its own.
“I started using CurraNZ a few months ago on the suggestion of my High-Performance Nutritionist to aid with recovery.
“Being a power athlete, I do a lot of heavy, explosive weight training and suffer quite badly from delayed-onset muscle soreness (DOMS).
“During the time that I have used CurraNZ, I have found that my body adapts a lot better to the hard training, and that muscle soreness no longer sets me back as much.
“Instead of waddling into training because my legs are too sore to move properly, I can attack each session with more energy and less pain.”
Her father, Dave, coaches her from home and, like many star Kiwi sportsmen and women, Julia has perfected her craft in the back yard. In her case, she trains in a home-built hammer cage.
She says: "Occasionally I throw a rogue hammer and it will go into the neighbor's property or take out a new bush that Mum has just planted," explains Ratcliffe, laughing. "We try to keep those rogue hammers quiet, but I’ve almost hit a cow on a couple of occasions."
We’re delighted to welcome Julia, who says: “It has become clear to me over my sporting career the importance of having a world-class support team who align with my values.
“CurraNZ is an excellent fit in my team and I am proud to be an ambassador for a New Zealand company making a globally-recognised product.”
CurraNZ is official supplier of supplements to High Performance Sport New Zealand. The Informed-Sport accreditation allows athletes subjected to drug testing to use CurraNZ with confidence