Father/son team Paul Malov and Alex Franchuk (Team Gamakatsu/Atomic) have taken out the 2013 ABT BREAM Classic Championship at Mallacoota, VIC. Malov and Franchuck come out of the blocks quickly on day one posting an imposing 5/5, 4.58kg tournament limit. They then backed it up with a 5/5, 4.51kg limit on day two to take the victory by a margin of 1.29kg from their nearest competitors.
On the prefish day the team checked out six possible locations for fish. The goal was to just observe and monitor activity as opposed to actually catching fish.
Malov explains, “We actually had four key areas that we just left alone. We found fish, but it was all about just observing if they were in any number and how they were behaving. With 68 teams on the water we knew the key would be to manage the locations we had to maximise the chances”.
On day one the team headed to Bottom Lake. They targeted bream around rock clumps and tea tree snags in water depth up to 2.5 meters. By 8.30am the team had boated three bream.
“We used 2” Atomic fat grubs in green gord/avocado colour rigged on a Gamakatsu 1/22nd round ball head. The technique was to cast tight to the edges and let the lure sink on a slack line. If there were no takes on the drop we would give the lure two little hops and then a pause before retrieving it using a slow roll/hopping/pause retrieve, explained Malov.
The team alternated the presentations with a hardbody presentation, “We used the Atomic crank 38 in ghost green shad. It was especially effective around shallow rock points”.
Gamakatsu/Atomic then made the move to Top Lake, targeting a rock wall. Using the Atomic crank they secured one fish slow rolling the lure down the side of the rock face. The team then moved to a bay where they found fish muddying in 10 feet of water.
“The water was quite green and we could see fish digging on the bottom. In all we caught 5-6 legal fish from the location and filled out our tournament limit”
On day two Gamakatsu/Atomic decided to follow the game plan that had provided them with fish on the first day. And the initial signs were good with two fish in the livewell by 8.30. The rock wall proved fruitless before a move to bay saw the team begin to gain momentum.
“At the bay we caught two bream including a 1.56kg fish. By 12pm we had four fish and were looking at filling our limit and potential upgrades”.
In an effort to find their fifth fish the team decided to fish deeper in an area of Top Lake. Using their Lowrance HDS 12 touch sounders the team found fish holding tight to the muddy bottom.
“Using 1/8th Atomic metalz in ghost green colour we attempted to get the fish to bite. We also added Megastrike in craw scent to the lures. The technique was two small hops tight to the bottom. Using this technique we filled our tournament limit”.
The team then hit the edges in hope of finding further upgrades. When this proved unsuccessful they returned to their original location. The fish were active, but the team was unable to land three successive hookups. In a final move they hit a timbered location that had previously fished well.
“This was a spot that holds fish. It may be clichéd but on the last cast we got a fish. It upgraded a 29.5cm fork bream to a 36 fork bream”.
Team Gamakatsu/Atomic headed back to the weigh-in in a pensive mood. Even though they had filled their limit and upgraded they knew the quality of fish available at the tournament location.
“We were worried those lost fish would cost us. The one thing I wasn’t worried about was the condition of the fish; with the recent addition of livewell vents from V-T2, the fish were livelier at the end of the day than they were when they were caught!
Our limit was comprised of three good fish and two legal fish. Watching the weigh-in was still nerve wracking. This is a big, prestigious event that all teams dream of winning”.
“When we realized we had won it was a huge mix of excitement, relief and accomplishment all at once. Doing it with Dad as my partner made it all the more special. We have a great partnership and it made the whole event an experience to remember”.
Malov and Franchuk took away a Mercury 4-stroke 150HP engine for the victory. The team thanked Frogleys Offshore, Lowrance and Evinrude for their support. They also thanked all the 68 teams who had assembled from around the country for attending.
Breamski take second
Team Breamski (Steve Nedeski/Jarrod Lye) found their limit each day, but were unable to haul in Team Gamakatsu/Atomic. Breamski were in contention for the day one lead with their 5/5, 4.51kg tournament limit. On day two however the team found conditions tougher and their 5/5, 3.56kg limit saw them fall short of the tournament leaders.
Nedeski shares his thoughts, “During the prefish we just took the time to look around and revisit places where we had previously caught fish”.
On day one the team headed to Top Lake to fish edges. “There was a proliferation of baitfish in the area. We were targeting fish on the snaggy edges in up to 3 feet of water. The key lures were the Jackall chubby in suji shrimp and the Berkley 3B in brown/red”.
The bream were active straight away with the team filling their five fish limit by 8am.
A hundred meter stretch of bank proved to be the key area with the bream sitting on the drop-off into deeper water.
The team then made a move to Top Lake flats where they targeted fish in 7-11 feet of water. “We used a 2” Berkley shrimp in camo colour rigged on a 1/32nd Nitro jighead. The key was to make long wind assisted casts. This allowed us to cover a lot of ground and not spook any potential bites. If the bites didn’t come on the drop we would employ an aggressive hop, pause and sink retrieve. These big rod lifts brought the fish on and resulted in three upgrades.
The team finally relocated to Bottom Lake, specifically Goodwin Sands, where they caught their final upgrade on the Berkley 3B lure.
On day two team Breamski decided to revisit their day one locations. In Top Lake the baitfish that were prolific on day one had moved on. The team explored the area but was unable to secure any bites. A move to the Top Lake flats saw the team begin to catch fish using a slightly different technique, “The bream responded to a much slower retrieve. Also the bream were the larger yellowfin which bolstered our limit. By 11am we had our five fish.
A move to Goodwin Sands proved fruitless, “It was too calm, we basically pulled up, looked around and left again”, explained Nedeski. The team finally returned to the Top Lake flats where they continued to catch fish, albeit the same size school fish around 32cm fork length.
Nedeski surmises the tournament, “Patience was the key. This included sorting through smaller fish to find the larger models. From a technique point of view long, wind assisted casts allowed us to cover a lot of ground. We got a lot of bites as the lure was on the drop”.
Team Breamski’s tackle included G. Loomis 8205 dropshot rods teamed with 1000 and 2500 size Shimano Stella reels spooled with 3lb Powerpro braid and 3lb/4lb Sunline V Hard leader.
Cohen Morante (Team Majorcraft) secured the event Big Bream on day two with a cracking 1.62kg specimen. The bream came from Allen Head at 12.30 in six feet of water.
“I was using an Atomic K9 pup in mud prawn colour. The technique was to make long casts and work the lure for around four feet before pausing it. It was a good strike and I knew it was a good fish by the fight it was giving. In all it took around 10 minutes from hookup to landing”, explains Morante.
Morante used a Majorcraft Crostage CRK-T702M rod teamed with 8lb Unitika Aorika braid and 3lb Unitika FC leader.
Rod: Samurai Reaction 201
Reel: 2508 Daiwa Steez
Line: 10lb Unitika Aorika II braid
Leader: 6lb Unitika Aiger leader
Outfit – Hardbodies
Rod: Samurai Reaction 203
Reel: 2000 Daiwa Sol
Line: 10lb Unitika Aorika II braid
Leader: 6lb Unitika Aiger leader
“The key was persistence. We knew that the tournament couldn’t be won in the deep; the fish on the edges were much bigger. Given that fact we focused 95% of our effort on the edges. The deep water was the fallback for filling our limit each session.
Also important was experience gained in other events at the same venue. This ultimately laid the foundation for our win in this event”, explained Malov.
|Bream Classic: ABT BREAM Classic Championship Team Results|
|1||GAMAKATSU/ATOMIC: Paul Malov & Alex Franchuk||5||4.58||5||4.78||10||9.36||Mercury 150hp fourstroke outboard|
|2||BREAMSKI: Steve Nedeski & Jarrod Lye||5||4.51||5||3.56||10||8.07||2 x Duffrods|
|3||MINN KOTA: Warren Carter & Cameron Whittam||5||4.36||5||3.67||10||8.03||Spotters Pack|
|4||BERKLEY: Brad Hodges & Michael Hodges||5||4.27||5||3.63||10||7.9||Ecogear Pack|
|5||AMAZON OUTDOORS/GLADIATOR TACKLE: Jason Grace & Steven Cefai||5||4.21||5||3.35||10||7.56||TT Lures Pack|
|6||BLACK LABEL: Mark Gercovich & Wayne Friebe||5||3.08||5||4.47||10||7.55||Duffrods Dollars|
|7||GLADIATOR TACKLE: Anthony Thorpe & Rodney Thorpe||5||4.3||5||3.25||10||7.55||Strike Pro Rods|
|8||COMPLEAT ANGLER BATEMANS BAY/SHIMANO: Jason Mayberry & Terry Parmenter||5||4.09||5||3.3||10||7.39||Imakatsu/Toray Pack|
|9||COLAC TACKLE: Stephen Parker & Declan Betts||5||2.69||5||4.68||10||7.37||Squidgy Pack|
|10||BRUM: Danni Suttil & Antony Suttil||5||3.44||5||3.93||10||7.37||Strike Pro Pack|
|11||MUDSHARK: Mario Vukic & Paul Conn||5||4.48||5||2.79||10||7.27|
|12||OUTALINE: John Morgan & Chris Findlay||5||3.67||5||3.46||10||7.13|
|13||HOWLER CUSTOM RODS: Shane Ling & Greg Woods||5||3.86||5||3.19||10||7.05|
|14||DOMA: Damien Domagala & Zig Domagala||5||4.46||4||2.55||9||7.01|
|15||PFLUEGER/EVINRUDE: Alan Loftus & Ross Cannizzaro||5||3.18||5||3.41||10||6.59|
|16||ORIGINAL SOURCE: Daniel Kent & Matthew Kearton||5||2.95||5||3.62||10||6.57|
|17||TANGLEFOOT: Tony Pettie & Kyle Pettie||5||4.35||3||2.18||8||6.53|
|18||MAJOR CRAFT/CRANKA: Daniel Mackrell & Stephen Wheeler||5||3.09||5||3.37||10||6.46|
|19||GLADIATOR TACKLE/COMPLEAT ANGLER NOWRA: Grant Kime & Brad Balding||5||3.58||5||2.85||10||6.43|
|20||THE OLD BAYS: Brian Pelle & James Blazewski||5||2.69||5||3.55||10||6.24|
|21||AUSTACKLE: Michael Cole & Don Johnston||5||3.29||5||2.94||10||6.23|
|22||KOOLABUNG LURES/GARY HOWARD RODS: Neil Chegwidden & Ross Lamotte||4||2.51||5||3.69||9||6.2|
|23||DUFFRODS: David Welfare & Greg Beattie||5||3.56||4||2.6||9||6.16|
|24||PROSTRIKE: Peter Stephens & Bradley Baade||5||3.26||5||2.74||10||6|
|25||SMITH BARFLIES: Mark Hayes & Mace Boyer||5||3.45||4||2.46||9||5.91|
|26||13 FISHING: Tom Slater & Callum Dowell||5||3.63||4||2.21||9||5.84|
|27||SAMURAI REACTION RODS: Tristan Taylor & Ben Shuey||5||2.49||5||3.34||10||5.83|
|28||BREAM BY STEALTH: Romeo Prezioso & Carl Ditoro||5||3.2||5||2.59||10||5.79|
|29||ABU/LOWRANCE: Tanya Konsul & Jason Harlock||5||2.85||5||2.89||10||5.74|
|30||COOEE HOTEL: Michael Richards & Dean Gill||5||2.73||5||2.93||10||5.66|
|31||BREAMING WITH CONFIDENCE: Nathan Leicht & Anthony Kalsow||4||2.26||4||3.32||8||5.58|
|32||STEALTH BLADES/KBC: Peter Cook & Blake O’Grady||5||3.04||4||2.36||9||5.4|
|33||HOWLER CUSTOM RODS NANO SERIES: Grant Stingel & Steve Bond||2||1.52||5||3.8||7||5.32|
|34||TT LURES: Kristoffer Hickson & Daniel Brown||5||2.94||4||2.26||9||5.2|
|35||AJS ENGINEERING/SS INDUSTRIAL: Darryn McColl & Steve Gross||2||1.35||5||3.78||7||5.13|
|36||MILLERODS: Harry Olatkiewicz & Jordan Trusty||5||3.75||2||1.34||7||5.09|
|37||EVOLUTION JIGHEADS/ADDICTION SOFT PLASTICS: Jason Kerrison & Zac Kerrison||5||2.29||5||2.71||10||5|
|38||SABT: Darrly Kelcey & Tom Deer||2||1.31||5||3.61||7||4.92|
|39||SOLAR DYNAMICS: Doug Phayer & Danny Torgersen||5||3.37||3||1.5||8||4.87|
|40||SANDY VEE: Bevan McGregor & Gary Milynn||5||2.91||3||1.84||8||4.75|
|41||CRANKA/ENZED: Andrew Krushka & Heath Krushka||2||1.93||4||2.73||6||4.66|
|42||PORT MACQUARIE TACKLE: Wayne Bale & Jeff Brunsdon||5||2.88||3||1.72||8||4.6|
|43||4 BRIMIN: Brad Williams & Tracey Wright||3||1.98||5||2.59||8||4.57|
|44||BERKLEY/DAIWA: Vaughn Lewis & Todd Riches||4||1.85||5||2.71||9||4.56|
|45||HURRICANE: Peter Nord & Robert Lee||5||2.94||2||1.6||7||4.54|
|46||HOBIE: Steve Fields & Jim Barrie||3||2.38||3||1.99||6||4.37|
|47||FISH IT: William Longani & Eric Faes||5||3.44||1||0.81||6||4.25|
|48||BUSH N’ BEACH/BERKLEY/PFLUEGER: Chris Britton & Robert Kwiatkowski||2||1.21||5||2.94||7||4.15|
|49||MAJOR CRAFT: Cohen Morante & Brad Morante||3||1.98||2||2.09||5||4.07||Mercury Big Bream (1.62kg)|
|50||HUMMINBIRD: Shaun Clancy & Jarrod Healey||1||1.01||5||2.95||6||3.96|
|51||BUSH N’ BEACH/BERKLEY/YAMAHA: Ben Collins & Anthony Wishey||5||2.56||3||1.38||8||3.94|
|52||EVOLUTION JIGHEADS/DIZTEK LURES: Darren Borg & Shane Hollands||5||2.77||2||1.16||7||3.93|
|53||RLEASN: Brett Crowe & Neil Kelly||1||0.52||5||3.08||6||3.6|
|54||CHAOS: Brad Biddleston & Mick Smith||5||2.36||2||1.13||7||3.49|
|55||AUSTACKLE-LEGEND: Dean Gamble & Mark Cribbes||3||1.66||3||1.61||6||3.27|
|56||DIZTEK LURES/EVOLUTION JIGHEADS: Rodney O’Sullivan & Zac O’Sullivan||1||0.64||4||2.59||5||3.23|
|57||DROP LIZARD MEDIA: Brian Everingham & David Seaman||1||1.04||3||1.91||4||2.95|
|58||FISHING MONTHY MAGAZINES: Steve Morgan & Scott Towner||1||0.51||4||2.09||5||2.6|
|59||ONE MORE CAST: Michael Newman & David Harding||1||0.63||3||1.97||4||2.6|
|60||RENAULT: Dean Nash & Ross Lavis||3||2.07||3||2.07|
|61||BREAM ATTACK: Geoffrey Borg & Michael Borg||2||1.64||2||1.64|
|62||EDGEBITE: Stuart Carruthers & Gary Carruthers||1||0.65||1||0.96||2||1.61|
|63||WHITEHEAD TIMBER SALES: Graeme Lalor & Dean Truman||2||1.57||2||1.57|
|64||KINGFISHER: Peter Godfrey & Max Godfrey||3||1.55||3||1.55|
|65||S & N AUSTACKLE: Simon Johnson & Nigel White||1||1.28||1||1.28|
|66||AUSTACKLE DOMINATOR: Heath Blaikie & John Wright||2||1.26||2||1.26|
|67||HOBIE FISHING 2: Shayne Gillett & Eric Cregan||2||0.94||2||0.94|
|68||PLAN C: Russell Morgan & James Rogan||1||0.44||1||0.44|