Mandurah, Western Australia.
Saturday, November 18, 2017
At the morning briefing on day 2 of the Hobie Kayak Bream Series 9 Australian Championship, Sean Higgins from Mokine in Western Australia received the “Atomic Big Bream” award for catching the heaviest bream, on day one of the championship. Higgin’s fish weighed in at 1.29 kg and was nearly two and a half times the average size of the fish caught on the day.
Names of anglers who had caught no fish on day one then went in a draw for the daily “Donut Dough” $100 cash prize. To cheers and laughter Kevin Boese, from Broughton Village in New South Wales, was called up on stage to receive his bitter, sweet prize. A hundred dollars is always good to have in your pocket, but Kevin would have traded it in for a full bag of fish on day one. Today and tomorrow, both the Atomic Big Bream $250 prize and the donut dough $100 will be up for grabs once again.
After the more serious side of the briefing, anglers pedalled to the Power-Pole starting line as heavy rain began to teem down, the downpour cleared just a few moments later, and anglers powered off in excellent conditions.
The field split in two just past the turning buoys with half heading to the Serpentine and Murray Rivers. Among them were anglers travelling more than 15km to get to their pre-planned locations. The other half of the competitors headed towards the canal systems around the Mandurah township, a much shorter trip of around twenty minutes. They had their lures in the water before the “River Rats” had even got a third of the way to their destinations.
It is a risky venture to head to the rivers, especially for those who go way up-stream, getting back on time can be difficult, and there is a chance of incurring a time penalty or even of disqualification if they get back to the event site after the 3 pm deadline.
Nevertheless, for those who chose to travel that far in the hope of reaping the riches that won the 2014 Australian Championship in the same location, the risk was worth taking.
Tonight the Official Tournament Dinner will be held followed by an impressive fireworks display and tomorrow will finish with an even bigger Bang! When a new Australian Champion is crowned.