REPORT: Central Coast Bluewater Classic tournament wrap

Nathan Bajada with team Chasin’ Tail – who received the award for most meritorious catch for tagging a black marlin from a dead boat – and Jason Browne from Garmin.

IN just its 9th year, the 2017 Central Coast Game Fishing Club’s Bluewater Classic has enjoyed continued success and growth.

Once again supported by major sponsors Garmin, Penn & Great Northern Brewing, this year’s tournament saw a new record number of entries with 53 boats and 236 anglers fishing the 7th & 8th of January from the Gosford Sailing Club based in Brisbane Waters.

With favourable weather conditions on both days and the fish spread out, the competition was fierce. Travelling boats from south of Sydney were fortunate to find the better water with bait holding marlin, as well as the local FADs, which produced for Cara Maddern on Maddness from Botany Bay GFC as she tagged a couple of marlin early on day one.

Further up the coast, local boats found good bait on their northern inshore grounds off Terrigal but the marlin holding on the bait were picky and only a lucky few managed to get a bite. Fishing their way down the coast to the Central Coast, Shannon Riley on Offshore from Lake Macquarie GFC managed to pick away at the marlin and gave Maddness a run for their money right to the end of fishing on the Sunday.

In the end though it was Maddness who did enough to take the win for Tag & Release in the Over 8m category after tagging another marlin on 10kg and a few other game fish along the way.

In the Under 8m side of things, there were plenty of hits and misses. Local boat’s Killtank and Finfisn got off to an early start both tagging fish early on the first day (see Finfisn’s striped marlin in video above), with Killtank’s being the first tagged marlin of the point score season for CCGFC.

Meanwhile visiting boat Full Monty 2 from Port Hacking GFC found a nice blue marlin on the shelf in the morning and then secured the win in the Under 8m tag and release category with a black marlin on the last “sched” of the day.
The Bluewater Classic generally sees the capture teams keeping the weigh station busy with XO size sharks and marlin to weigh, however this weekend the fish were smaller but Mr Pig from Central Coast GFC straightened the hooks boat side on a massive tiger shark.

Broken Bay GFC’s Carnage took out the Under 8m Capture with tiger & blue sharks on the Saturday, then followed up with a good size mako on the Sunday. Whilst in the over 8m, Rampage from Broken Bay GFC weighed in a tiger shark on the Saturday to secure the win.

Final stats for the weekend were 22 marlin tagged, the majority of these being striped with a few blacks and one blue in the mix. Three sharks were weighed, one tagged, plus the usual swag of mahi mahi, an albacore and a yellowtail kingfish thrown into the mix.

Congratulations to all the winners and to those that competed in the event. There was once again very positive feedback from all the anglers who all enjoyed a couple days of competitive fishing at the recently upgraded facilities at the home of the Central Coast GFC – the Gosford Sailing Club. The tournament had a fun and friendly atmosphere and the club looks forward to these teams returning next year to either defend their title or claim it back.

The recently upgraded facilities at the Gosford Sailing Club made for a comfortable base for the weekend.

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