Sunday April 19, saw the inaugural running of the Pirtek Fishing Challenge a unique event that attracted 1800 anglers from all over Australia with proceeds raised going towards the fight against prostate cancer.
The unique one-day catch and release event ran from 6am to 6pm with competitors only given details of their home state’s target species until the night before event commencement.
After photographing their catches anglers were required to upload the images for judging with fish measuring the longest on the provided brag mats in contention for a share of $100,000 in cash and prizes. Pirtek Fluid Systems provided $70,000 for cash prizes ($5,000 for each longest target fish) and were supported by other sponsors Evinrude, Berkley and Lowrance who supplied junior and place prizes.
Winners were announced via website www.pirtekfishingchallenge.com.au on Saturday April 25, 2009 where a full listing is available.
Michael Guest who directed the competition on Pirtek’s behalf commented, “hosting a competition with 1800 anglers nationally has its challenges and it has been through the commitment from Pirtek and expansion of IT and digital photography that has allowed such a fantastic concept to become a reality.”
Weather conditions on the day contrasted across competing states with strong winds and driving rain experienced in NSW and clear skies enjoyed in many other areas. Some quality fish were caught and released by both male and female anglers durinmg the event and junior fishermen were out in force; notably some juniors managed to record bigger fish in some categories than adults. One of the key factors behind the challenge was to involve families and friends in an enjoyable day’s fishing, all for a god cause. With feedback from competing anglers being overwhelmingly positive, many anglers already expressing interest in competing in another Pirtek Challenge in 2010.
Pirtek Fluid Systems General Manager, Steve Dutton was excited about the company’s involvement in the event commenting, “the ultimate goal was to raise awareness and $100,000 for the Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia. Our workforce through the 85 strong franchisees across the country are predominately male, so joining forces with the Prostate Cancer Foundation was an easy decision. Pirtek and our franchisees are very excited to see the level of enthusiasm from the angling community and look forward to the Challenge in 2010.”