|REDCLIFFE, QUEENSLAND, 23RD AUGUST 2015
August 22 and 23 was a huge weekend in the Hobie Kayak Bream Series on Deception and Morton Bays in Redcliffe, Queensland! Anglers tussled for excellent prize money, sponsor packs, Angler of the Year and Series Ranking points and qualification in the Australian Championship. Most important of all though were the two places on the team to represent Australia at the 5th Hobie Fishing World Championship in November.
Just 40 minutes north from Brisbane, the waters off Redcliffe offered up sand banks, channels, rock walls, shoreline reefs and canal systems for the anglers. The tournament buzzed with anticipation as a swarm of the country’s best kayak anglers – from three Australian states – gathered on the Power-Pole Starting Line loaded with a tackle store full of gear. The battle was on!
Glassy conditions greeted the anglers on day 1 and the field split in two distinct directions. Many traveled a long way down the coastline to reefs and structure further south while a smaller group journeyed, in the opposite direction, to the boats and jetties of the canal system.
It was a solid day on the water and a large number of anglers came home with their full bag of 4 bream in what was at times a difficult bite. As the tide began to rise the fish became more active across the AusTackle Arena and while a lot of anglers reported that they were able to entice the bite, the fish were difficult to keep hooked, and bust offs were common around the many reefs. Upgrades were scarce, nevertheless some exceptional bream were brought aboard the kayaks, with 4 kickers that weighed in at over a kilo on day 1.
At the end of the day’s Strike Pro Weigh-In, Steve Crawley from Queensland headed the Lowrance Leaderboard with 2.60kg. He sat 40g ahead of fellow Queenslander Guy Struthers on 2.56kg and Jason Garner, also from Queensland, brought in a solid 2.51kg bag and sat in third place.
The competitors headed off on the final day with slightly less cloud cover and some patchy fog. The more successful anglers from day 1 were sticking with what was working, in hope of a repeat to the previous day’s performance, while others re-adjusted their tackle and plan of attack.
The glassy conditions and water clarity made for tough going across the board on day 2. These conditions coupled with a pair of spear fishermen were too much for day 1 leader – Steve Crawley as the spear fishos proceeded to spook the reef that he had pinned his hopes on. His luck and a chance to represent Australia were speared.
After an excellent day 1 sitting in second position and a solid day 2, Guy Struthers from Queensland, scooped the tournament’s treasured top prize and took home $1,000, a place at the Australian Championship on Lake Macquarie in November and the honour of representing Australia at Hobie Fishing Worlds 5 in China.
Struthers snatched his victory with a two-day bag of 8 bream for a total weight of 4.08kg. Neil Carstairs from Victoria jumped up from his day 1, 4th position to second and take out the final place on the Aussie team heading to China with 7 fish for 3.56kg. Michael Maas, from Queensland, netted 3rd place with 8 fish weighing in at 3.37kg.
The Mortgage Corp Monster Mover for the biggest move up the leaderboard from day 1 to day 2, – was taken out by Marco Grubb, from Queensland with a total catch of 2 bream for 1.76kg, Grubb also took home the Hogs Breath Café Boss Hog Big Bream prize for the biggest fish of the tournament.