The 2012 M Group Tyre & Mechanical World Sooty Championship at Eungella Dam delivered anglers picture perfect weather and a sooty fix to satisfy the most seasoned tournament fishing angler.
A total of 80 anglers made the journey to Eungella for the major fundraising event for the Mackay Area Fishing Stocking Association (MAFSA), with former Mackay Tackleworld employee Craig Breadsell breaking through for his maiden win in the popular event. Locals dominated the winner’s dais, with John Trigg securing second, and 2011 event winner Dave Creffield thrid.
For event winner Breadsell it was a comprehensive win with the 2012 champ compiling a 2500mm score for the three angling sessions, an impressive total that delivered him a 41.6cm fish average and a winning margin of 137mm over his nearest rival, John Trigg of JT Reel Repairs fame.
Fishing deep trees (40-60ft) in the middle reaches of the lake Breadsell used a lipless crankbait approach, throwing a Strada Shudder tight to structure and working it through the biggest and best concentrations of timber that he could find. “The tighter you got your lure into the trees the better your chances of catching fish – and catching bigger fish,” said Breadsell.
The depth of the retrieve varied depending on the tree and how deep down the best cover was. “If the best cover was shallow on the tree I’d work it high in the water column, while if it was further down I’d let it sink and work it down deep,” said Breadsell.
The varying approach was spot on with Breadsell catching eight legal fish in session one, four in session two, and another four in session three. The final session proved the toughest with Breadsell fishless for the first 2 1/2 hours. “I had nothing to show for the first half of the session, so I just kept on casting, covering water and waiting for the fish to come.”
The tackle he used included a 5’6” G.Loomis rod, Abu Revo Premier reel, spooled with 20lb YGK Nitlon PE, and 20lb nylon leader.
For event runner-up John Trigg it was a podium finish at an event that he holds very dear. “Eungella is my favourite dam, hands down, and this event is definitely my favourite,” said Trigg.
Fishing flooded trees in 14.5m of water in two specific areas, Trigg concentrated his efforts on trees that he found during a prefish two weeks before the tournament that were loaded with fish.
“I used my Humminbird sounder leading up to the tournament to pin-point the trees that had the best concentrations of fish on them. The idea was to then go back during the tournament and hopefully catch them.”
Fishing the top 4m of the trees, Trigg used a combination of Rapala Rippin’ Raps and Cotton Cordell Super Spots in gold, throwing past the trees then working them back with a slow rolling retrieve. “I always made sure I wound the lure fast enough to feel it vibrating through the line. If I couldn’t then I wasn’t winding fast enough.”
Having only finished out of the top ten once in the event’s eight year history, Trigg will be one to watch in 2013.
A 50cm fish once again remained elusive at the event, with Matthew Black coming painfully close with his 490mm fish captured in session one delivering him the Big Sooty award for the tournament.
Black caught the thumper from the smallest boat in the field and travelled the furthest of anyone in the field to catch his fish. Heading to the upper reaches of the Broken River, Black caught it on a lure that is well regarded in lure fishing circles.
“It came on my second cast of the day on a Nilsmaster Spearhead fished near weed next to a set of rocks,” said Black. Fighting as hard as you’d expect from a fish of its size, it regretfully wasn’t a sign of things to come and remained Black’s only fish for the tournament.
Junior anglers also revelled in the action at the event with Cody Coghill finishing first in the junior section, Nicholas Cameron second, Kylan Dale third, and Grace Birkett forth.
The event was a success for all involved, with MAFSA raising funds to ensure healthy future stocking of the lake, and the ongoing success of the event. MAFSA in particular would like to thank all anglers, sponsors and organisers that contributed to the success of the 2012 M Group Tyre & Mechanical World Sooty Championship, and look forward to this continuance in 2013. – World Sooty Championship