The Barra Tournament season is off again with a great start for the first round of the MTA Barra Summer league at Peter Faust.
It’s a busy period coming up for tournament anglers in the next few months being capped off with the prestigious ABT Barra tour starting 22 November through to 1 December. If the weather stays anything like it has for the winter and the start of spring we should see some hot barra action like we saw at Peter Faust.
There were 55 barra caught in the first session and 31 in the second session and was fished as a 2 session, best 3 fish (only 3 fish maximum bag were registered per angler). Some anglers caught more than 3 fish per session, here are some stats from the results sheets: 1st session 46 barra for a total length of 4,298cm with an average length of 93.43cm; 2nd session 30 barra, 2,691cm with an average length of 89.7cm.
The water level for the dam is 50cm below the overflow and dropping slowly and the water temp maxed out for the day around 28.5ºC. There is very little weed around and the water seemed clearer than usual.
The weather conditions were almost perfect for the Saturday afternoon start of 2pm and a finish of 9pm but a thunder storm around 4pm put the dampeners on with some very heavy rain that made it a tad uncomfortable.
Since the start of the MTA group there has been a steady improvement in member’s numbers and boats attending the comps, this was the best turnout for a barra comp with 14 boats, one boat fished 3 anglers making a total of 29 competitors for the round. There were three boats from Townsville one from Ayr one from Rockhampton and one from Bundaberg and the rest from the Mackay region.
After the first session Dustin Sippel from Bundaberg was leading the field with his three fish measuring 312cm and boating a massive 130cm beauty that equalled the ABT best caught by Peter Price in 2011. Dustin’s three fish came on different lures with the 130 falling to a Rapala Balsa, the 93cm to an X-Rap and the 88cm to a Slick Rig.
Second place was held by Keegan Hayden with a total length of 306cm with his three fish the biggest 115cm all falling to the Rapala gliding rap.
Luke Katsaros held third spot with his three fish totalling 294cm. Luke’s biggest fish measured 105cm.
The last prize position in fourth place was held by Ethan Farrell with 288cm.
The second session on Sunday morning started with a dam like glass, not a breath of wind, with a 6am start and a 1pm finish. The conditions were almost too good for barra fishing and it showed in the end result with 31 barra being caught compared to 55 in the first.
However following his victory in the last round of the 2013 MTA summer league Craig Griffiths came storming back from an average 1st session 9th place with a three barra bag all over the metre-mark, 105cm, 102cm and 100cm. giving him a total length for the session of 307cm and a winning 6 fish total for the event of 565cm. Craig caught his fish from the trees and no one fishes the trees like Craig.
Ethan Farrell maintained his good showing from the first session improving his fourth place to finish second and only falling short of first place by being 4cm behind Craig. Ethan’s 3 fish gave him a second session total of 273cm with his biggest fish of the session 103cm, finishing with a total length for the tournament of 561cm.
Geoff Newby who was holding 5th place after the first session moved up a couple of spots into 3rd place with a second session 3 fish total of 239cm giving him a tournament total of 509cm. Geoff was the only angler in the prize list for any of his fish not to top the metre mark.
The fourth and final place was taken out by Luke Katsaros who partnered Craig Griffiths for the two days. Luke took the 4th place mantle from his brother Chris who finished 4th in the last round of the 2013 MTA Summer League. Luke unfortunately could not find that third elusive fish to make up his bag limit but did manage two 1m fish for a second session total of 206cm giving Luke a tournament total of 500cm.
The biggest barra prize went to Dustin Sippel with that big girl of 130cm from the first session, Dustin struggled in the second session and could not hold on to the first place he held from the first session. He did however manage to catch the second biggest fish of the tournament with another massive barra of 121cm, his only fish in the second session.
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