Marlo turns on the big bream

IF there was a perfect venue for a round of the Daiwa Hobie Kayak Series, the coastal town of Marlo in Victoria would probably be it. A smaller system with lots of areas inaccessible to watercraft other than kayaks, filled with food for some of the fattest bream in Australia, it has quickly become a kayak bream mecca. So much so, Marlo has been chosen along with its sister system at Bemm River to play host to the 3rd Hobie Fishing Worlds later this year.

Last weekend saw the running of Round 8 of the season which offered the top two place-getters a spot at this years “Worlds”.

Conditions were perfect over the weekend with the moon phase and tides coupled with good weather promising truly epic bags. Anglers had two tide changes during the day with a runout tide through the majority of the sessions and low tide, when the biggest fish tend to bite, just before the finish of the session.

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The field of 66 anglers left the start line at 7.30am on day one. About thirty minutes later the biggest bag of bream ever caught in a kayak event – and the largest single fish ever weighed in a kayak tournament – were in a livewell. The angler, Strike Pro’s national sales manager, Rick Massie could not have asked for a better start.

“I’ve been fishing here with lures for 12 years now and went to a spot I knew only 500 metres from the start. There’s a snag and a point with a little rock as well as a mussel bed and within 7 casts I had boated 6 fish and the one I lost that would have made 7 from 7 casts was as large as my biggest fish.”

Rick knew he had just any anglers dream come true in the first half an hour. At the end of day one his catch tipped the scales with a 3/3 4.68kg, made up of a 1.83kg, a 1.61kg and a 1.24kg smashing the two records. The 1.83kg fish held throughout the comp to take out the Hogs Breath Café Boss Hog.

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The question on the morning of day 2 was “could he do it again?” Even if Rick weighed a modest bag it was going to take another epic weight to overtake him. Well, it is Marlo and that epic bag came from Ronnie Sonter. While Rick’s bag is still the biggest ever weighed, Ronnie’s is now the second biggest.

Ronnie went out on day 2 in 4th place with a very respectable 3.39kg and went back to his same spot at the mouth of Lake Corringle.

“I spent 5 hours in the same spot waiting for the right fish to come through. I knew that as the lake drained on the runout tide the fish would move past right where I was. I had my bag by 8.30 and had upgraded the all by 9.30 but between 11 and 12 was the magic hour and I upgraded all three of my fish and they were all 40cm to the fork.”

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Ronnie’s bag was a 3/3 4.32kg for a total of 6/6 7.71kg leaving Rick Massie needing 3.04kg to take it but it was not to be as Rick’s bite had slowed and he could only weigh 3/3 2.33kg which still gave him a more than respectable 7.01kg and second place. Ronnie Sonter’s consistency over the two days saw him take it in amazing fashion and it will be interesting to see how Ronnie and Rick fare at Marlo again for the 3rd Hobie Fishing Worlds and the Grand final later this year at Marlo again.

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More at: www.hobiefishing.com.au

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