Viticulturist winner targets national prize after second victory

Annabel Bulk, of Felton Road Wines, takes a breather shortly after finishing the BioStart...
Annabel Bulk, of Felton Road Wines, takes a breather shortly after finishing the BioStart Hortisports race, which was part of the Bayer Central Otago Young Viticulturist of the Year competition at the Otago Polytechnic Central Campus, Bannockburn on Friday. Photo: Yvonne O'Hara
Annabel Bulk, of Felton Road Wines, has won the Central Otago Young Viticulturist competition for the second year in a row.

The secret was "having a passion for what I do, but I love to keep learning new things and challenging myself.  I think that’s all important."

One challenge this year was a nutrient section "which was quite new — I hadn’t put a lot of focus into that area of expertise, so that was definitely a challenge, but definitely in a good way."

Miss Bulk will  now compete in the national final at the Palliser Estate, Martinborough, on August 27.

Miss Bulk placed second at the national final last year, and her goal was to win first place this year.

"Most of the impetus this time for me really putting a lot of work in the last couple of weeks was getting the win here so that I could go back to nationals and give that a really good crack.

"Knowing that I came second last year I know that I’m in good running to compete for that top spot."

Eight young people from Central Otago vineyards competed for the honour of representing the region in the Bayer Central Otago Young Viticulturist of the Year competition last Friday at the Otago Polytechnic Central Campus.

Of the eight contestants — five women and three men — five had entered before.

The competitors completed modules and also took part in the BioStart Hortisports race, in which they had to roll barrels, deal with chemicals and pop balloons.

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