Rd 4 was held on the glorious expanse of Lake Macquarie over the weekend of the 16/17th January, and although the weather played nice at times, the threat of getting wet seemed to keep a few people from having a go. But the show went on regardless!
With 13 keen kayakers turning up to Cooney Pt at Swansea on the Eastern side of the Lake, and 14 Teams turning up to battle it out on the Western side at Rathmines it turned out to be an okay weekend for those who turned up. And an even better weekend for our winners.
On the kayak front, we had 13 keen and committed anglers show up to do battle with each other in the two divisions to see who could nail the first place and some extra cash in the wallet. Considering the weather looked reasonably iffy early on we definitely found out who walks the walk when it comes to showing up for a CCMB event, and as usual the same hardcore crew where there along with some new players to the series, plus a ring in who was on the scene but oblivious to the comp about to take place. Mark Wilkins who was visiting from Victoria was immediately roped in and thrown into the mix, and although he didn;t get the results for the round he did nail his PB Flathead of 88cm, which is what he turned up to do. Congrats Mark, thanks for playing along and well done on your PB.
With the recent rains really turning the water into a mixed bag of tannin coloured flats and crystal clear sand bars it was clear that two things were going to happen. The fish would be actively hunting on the flats, but due to the clarity of the water may be a tad flighty if they could see the anglers coming. And secondly, it was going to take some serious skill to take out the first place with some of Australia’s best yak anglers hunting down that big bag to take the win with.
As it turns out the combination of local knowledge, and some good fish whispering skills resulted in two pretty reasonable bags for the Pro and Amateur divisions. That’s not to say that everyone didn’t do well, of the 13 competitors we had 12 full bags, and according to the totals around 120-130 legals caught over the course of the day which is a testament to these guys bream chasing skills.
So, to the results:
Taking out the PRO Weight division was a CCMB veteran, and National Team representative, Jason Meech. Meechy hit his usual haunts down along the southern weed beds of Swansea throwing a mixture of Ecooda Mini & Deep Cranks, Pro Lure S36’s and Squidgy Lobby’s to produce his winning bag of 3/3 2.45kg and the tied HWS/Samaki Big Bream presenting a solid fish weighing in at 1.0kg on the dot. Cranking in a specific depth and following the tide and thermocline as it pushed into the open water Jason found the fish willing to smash his presentation with little hesitation, but picking through the just legals was a challenge he rose to with no problem. Meechy’s on water knowledge seemed to be the key to his win on the day, knowing when to change presentations as the conditions changed is a testament to his bream chasing skill and it is little wonder that he is consistently in the top echelon of the National kayak angling tournament tables. Jason took $500 cash, and graciously passed on the Samaki Zing SZG6101SML rod that was part of the HWS/Samaki Big Bream prize pack. He did opt for the HWS $50 voucher however, and will most likely utilise that to pimp his kayak even more. Well done Jason, I’m sure that coin will shout me a few schooners at Bemm River!!!
In 2nd place by only a mere 100gms was another CCMB old hand, Warren Allen. In Warrens words “I paddled about 600m from launch and started cranking. I started with shallow black cranks, getting the odd small one. I had my bag of 3 fish by about 930am and thought I might change depth and location. I then switched to a deep crank in a muddy prawn type colour. The muddy prawn was the stand out lure upgrading on the edge of the deep where the clear met the dirty water. This got me my upgrades that I needed”. Again having the knowledge to wait and see what the conditions would present enabled Waz to find the fish, and upgrade when he could. Waz walked away with the Berkley CCMB $200 voucher, and the Samaki Zing SZG6101SML to add to his quiver. Well done Warren, thanks for supporting the series and turning up when you can.
In 3rd place, again by only a few hundred grams, was Andrew “T-Bone” Taylor. In Andrews words “I used Pro Lure S36 Cranks all day man , I kept 3 outfits rigged with them. 1 with a deep Mangrove shrimp the other with a shallow tiger shrimp and my straight through gear had the Gino custom colour that worked a treat for me at the Munmorah round. I fished the flats and drop offs at Swansea near the boat channel and the broken bottom through on the way back to the sand islands of Marks Point. Although there were fish right through (behind the big Island) I found plenty of action in the tidal eddies….It’s a fave spot of mine!!!! Other than that I never fished any other structure all day. No boat hulls etc….just cranked it up!” Andrew walked away with a great goodie bag filled with Diztek, Samaki, Atomic, Berkley and Jackall bream lollies all thanks to CCMB. Nice work mate, and great result.
In 4th place Joshua Richards again made the drive from Richmond, with the help of his dad Steve, and again managed a top 5 placing in only his second competition entry. Josh cruised the edges along the flats directly out front of the launch area and managed a reasonably decent 3/3 1.80kg bag. Throwing deep diving black Pro Lure S36 cranks produced only a small number of fish for Josh, but the fish he landed were good enough to score himself a great goody bag from CCMB with Diztek, Samaki, Atomic, Keitech and Berkley bream lollies. Well done Josh, keep cracking at it mate, persistence pays!
Rounding out the top 5 was another figure in the National Kayak bream angling scene, Carl Dubois. Carl made the trip from Woollongong to, in his words, “Put the sword to the Donut Demons that hounded me during the Hobie Australian Championships back in November“. And did he ever skewer those demons. Carl smashed the fish all day on the flats out front, but picking through the hordes of little fish was his biggest challenge, and unfortunately the keggers eluded him. He did however present a 3/3 1.78kg bag, and a decent .700gm fish that nailed his final position. Cranking the flats, and patchy beds did the trick for Carl with IMI Tetramonos landing all of his fish. Carl also provided a bit of comedy relief for a few other anglers with some friendly banter egging them on to land more fish, along with his classic photobombing of Meechy during the photo session. Carl took a bag of goodies from CCMB for his efforts. Cheers for putting in the km’s mate, love your work!
For the rest of the field, getting through the small fish seemed to be the hardest part. With the fish being on the chew all day, getting fish wasn’t the hard part, it was finding the keg’s mixed amongst them. Then again, who can complain when you are getting fish all day! Big thanks to you blokes, and CCMB welcomes to a new angler, Paul Dunlop to the crew, thanks for coming along mate! Check out the gallery at the end of this post for more pics!
Special thanks to Will Davis from Bent Visuals who juggled his time between photographer and angler. As you can see, his shots are very professional and look tops! If you are considering some photo work, give him a call, and like his FB and Flickr page here https://www.flickr.com/photos/bentvisuals
Final Table: Kayak PRO:Weight
1st: Jason Meech. 2nd: Warren Allen. 3rd: Andrew Taylor. 4th: Joshua Richards. 5th: Carl Dubois. 6th: William Davis. 7th: Glenn Allen. 8th: Eric Wood. 9th: Paul Dunlop.
In the Kayak AMATEUR Photo C&R division there was some pretty close results between the 5 anglers who opted for this division, and with all but two anglers presenting a full bag it was going to be very close indeed between the top 3 but with his 3/3 102cm bag it was Richard “Benno” Benson taking out his maiden CCMB win after only 4 cracks at it which isn’t too bad considering it took yours truly 8 rounds to finally bag a win! Richard cranked his way across a fair bit of water to nail his bag, and lost some serious crackers along the way. Using Pro Lure S36’s was again the key to finding good fish for Richard and he did it well. Benno took $200 cash, and the bragging rights with his local buddies who also had a crack.
In 2nd place, and finishing on the podium again in 2 rounds back to back, was Dane Pryce. Dane cranked and jigged his way across the flats and into the deeper water off the launch area to nail a solid 3/3 96cm bag result. Dane scored himself a goodie bag filled with bream lollies and product from our sponsors and CCMB.
In 3rd place it was another regular face, Alan Coulter. Alan fished in the same areas as Richard but unfortunately just couldn;t get those keg fish into the boat, he was catching them but they were popping hooks closer to the net than he liked. Alan’s 3/3 95cm just missed out on 2nd place honours, but he reckons he had a good day on the water regardless. Alan got a goody bag with product from our sponsors and CCMB.
In 4th was Troy Taylor who has also become a CCMB regular of late. Troy also cranked and jigged his way across a lot of water but just could not get through the plagues of little fish. That’s fishing mate, at least you got fish!
Rounding it off was our ring in from Victoria, Mark Wilkins. Mark rolled up to the start with his pimped out, wrapped Hobie PA and caused quite a stir when he showed up. But he was there to catch Flatties! After some quick chitchat he agreed to have a go and set out to get a bag. Unfortunately he is only new to chasing bream on lure and didn;t present a bag to the finish. He did however nail the PB croc he was there to get and at the end of the day he was quite thankful to the guys who welcomed him and gave him some tips to take home!
Final Results: Kayak AMATEUR Photo C&R
1st: Richard Benson. 2nd: Dane Pryce. 3rd: Alan Coulter. 4th: Troy Taylor. 5th: Mark Wilkins
That wraps up the kayak results for Round 4 and the 2015 series. Massive thanks to our sponsors and supporting businesses. Hit their FB, web, Instagram, Flickr pages and like and share them. If you are in the area go to their stores and spend your coin. If you need services that some of these businesses provide, give them the benefit of a call, a quote and the chance to get your business. These business owners provide you anglers, and CCMB with the means to get quality product and services to you in the form of prizes and product. If you don’t give them the time of day then they will do the same. In the end it’s you guys that lose out, not me and not them.
Special mentions go to these blokes for their help and behind the scenes work: Neil Roberts for providing the contact to get the bump bags made, and the many hours on the phone listening to me gripe about this and that. Champion! Glenn and Warren Allen for being solid supporters of CCMB since the start way back in 2011. Richard Benson and the Swansea crew for plugging CCMB and getting people involved.
Also we can’t forget our kayak round winners over the year so here they are:
Rd 1 Brisbane Waters Winner: Simon Morley
Rd 2 Lake Munmorah Winner: Andrew Taylor
Rd 3 Hawkesbury River Winners : Kayak PRO – Simon Morley. Kayak AMATEUR – Dane Pryce.
Rd 4 Lake Macquarie Winners: Kayak PRO – Jason Meech. Kayak AMATEUR – Richard Benson
Stay tuned for info and news!