The Xstrata Lake Moondarra Fishing Classic has wrapped up for 2012 with crowds well and truly exceeding expectations and any previous records.
Organisers and volunteers were run off their feet as spectators and competitors in their thousands revelled in the jam-packed fishing and entertainment schedule.
Fishing results for 2012 event also saw huge numbers; 655 competitors nominating and 304 fish weighed in from 6.15pm Friday through to weigh station closure at 12pm Sunday.
Although eight large barramundi were weighed in, the $50,000 Mount Isa Water Board Tagged Barra once again eluded capture by anglers, leaving a $1,000 bounty on her head if brought in within the next twelve months. The Mount Isa Fish Stocking Group will announce the tag number in the coming week.
Bill Rigby snagged the title of the Heaviest Barramundi with a whopping 13.94kg beauty weighed in at 9pm on Friday. Other major category winners included Paul Gofton taking out the Champion Senior Angler and Lachlan Winter the hotly contested Champion Junior Angler title.
Moz O’Brien won the lucky senior nomination prize of a Skytrans and Parker Travel flight and accommodation package and Mark Mercy took home a cool $750 for snagging the Mount Isa Water Board Mystery Weight Barra with a 9.22kg specimen.
For those who stayed on dry land throughout the weekend the entertainment schedule saw Xstrata Copper take out the Buffs Club Beach Volleyball competition and the Xstrata Dragon Slayers once again take home the senior Dragon Boat Regatta title; storming home to a win followed closely by the Dave Clancy Electrical ‘Dragon Power’ entry.
The Industrea Fireworks Spectacular went off with a huge bang. Creek to Coast’s Kimberly Busteed conducting the count down for the crowd of thousands lining the shores of the lake to witness the show. In a display labelled the ‘Isa and North West’s largest ever fireworks show’, spectators were marvelled by Five Star Fireworks display lasting over ten minutes and including special effects from both the water and the sky.
In a first for the long running event, Sunday saw families enjoy deliciously cooked local barramundi, a host of children’s activities and live entertainment from local performers in the first ever Barra n Beatz luncheon. ‘Cookie’ from the Yamaha Supertank, thanks to Pirtek, gave spectators a ‘fish-eye view’ from under the water with his 15m long perspex fish tank display.
Event Manager George Fortune was thrilled with the results.
“2012 has been a huge year for all involved. As volunteers we really work hard in our own time for eight to ten months to make the event a stand out weekend for all that attend. It’s hugely gratifying to see the competition and camp sites filled to the brim with smiling children, happy families and all age groups. It really makes all our hard work worthwhile.
“With anglers nominating from as far away as Geelong Victoria, Hervey Bay and Longreach, it’s obvious that word has gotten out that the classic is Queensland’s richest freshwater fishing comp. With a secure source for obtaining Gulf barramundi larvae now procured we are very excited about putting proceeds from the event towards purchasing fingerlings for stocking back into the lake in the near future,” said George.
Special guest from Channel 7’s Creek to Coast Kimberley Busteed was blown away by the high calibre of the weekend, and said she couldn’t wait to return and bring her family in the future.
The 2012 Xstrata Lake Moondarra Fishing Classic is supported through the Events Queensland Regional Development Program (EQRDP). – Xstrata Lake Moondarra Fishing ClassicReads: 952