Team Bush n’ Beach/Berkley (Chris Britton and Anthony Wishey) returned to the winner’s dais at the QLD BREAM Open with the Moreton Bay bream stalwarts claiming victory in the 2014 Power-Pole Micro Anchor presented event.
Compiling a 15/15, 9.31kg three-day limit to secure the event win, the pair came from last on the first day, 2nd on second day, and went one better on the final day to once again add their name to The Open trophy.
For three times QLD Open champions it was a southern bay fueled event with the pair fishing a milk run of proven tournament winning spots and locations they were confident would hold fish.
Day one saw the pair start out fishing rocky locations in the middle of the bay and throwing a combination of hardbodies, namely a Berkley 3B Crank and a 3B Scumdog. With a limit in the well by 9.30am the pair start to cover more water in search of upgrades, fishing fresh ground on a rising tide with shallow cranks and lightly weighted plastics. Weighing in the lightest bag (2.95kg) for the day and sitting in last place, Britton and Wishey were far from dismayed.
“Sure we weighed in the smallest bag, but it was the heaviest bag that we’d ever weighed on the first day of this tournament! We were far from disappointed with our start because each of our two QLD Open wins saw us with a 1kg deficit at the end of the first day,” said Britton.
Day two dawned and the pair started once again with a rocky hardbody approach, albeit with a different outcome.
“It glassed out in the morning and when that happens on the bay it gets very tough,” said Britton.
Grinding out the morning the pair finally filled their limit mid way through the session, then spot hopped throughout the session before one final pit-stop before the 1.15pm finish.
“We want to time this spot perfectly with the side and that’s exactly what happened, and in the space of an hour they upgrade their whole bag, including no fish smaller than 30cm,” said Britton.
Delivering the biggest limit for the tournament to the stage the pair stormed through the field, with their 3.77kg limit leapfrogging them into second place.
“It was a great feeling to come back like we did, especially on the back of the late flurry and complete upgrade of our whole limit,” said Britton.
Heading into day three with their sights on their third QLD BREAM Open victory and only 170g and one team in the way of achieving it Britton and Wishey had a spring in their step courtesy of their strong day two.
“We chatted about our game plan and knew it was important to manage our spots, get out timing right, and resist the urge to hit our big fish spot too early and spook rather than catch the big fish that it held,” said Britton.
The pair filled their bag early courtesy of early wind, then when the tide was right hit their big fish spot.
“While the stage of the tide was right there just wasn’t enough wind to get the big fish to bite like they did the day before,” said Britton.
Heading back to the check-in, the pair made one more stop, hitting Green Island for a quick power fish before calling it quits for the day. It was here that they picked up one more upgrade, a 29cm that booted a 25cm specimen out of their bag and, as the weigh-in would show, would prove crucial.
“Most teams struggled on the final day, so when we weighed in 2.59kg to grab the lead and ultimately the victory by 210g we realised it was that last fish that gave us the added weight we needed to win.”
Britton and Wishey now join Tristan Taylor and Dave McKenzie as the two most successful teams in the history of the Power-Pole Micro Anchor QLD BREAM Open. A history that’s sure to see the two teams go head-to-head for ultimate supremacy in 2015.
For event runners up Team Able Traffic/Diztek Lures (Darren Borg and Nathan Grima) is was a nail biting final weigh-in with the pair grabbing the event lead at the start or weigh-in and just getting pipped at the post by Britton and Wishey.
Day one saw them fish the Cleveland area on the western side of the bay and it was here that the pair focused on a rocky mussel bed as the key area to fish.
“We fished a Diztek FB35 crankbait and slow rolled it across the bottom with a dead slow retrieve,” said Borg.
The approach delivered them a 3.02kg and had them sitting in second place at the end of the day. Day two once again saw them start their day at Cleveland cranking the rocks and mussels for fish.
“There was less wind on day two and fishing got very hard in the clear glassed-out conditions,” said Borg.
In search of active fish the pair ventured further afield and spot hopped locations as they worked their way through the southern end of the bay.
“We travelled as far south as Macleay Island, catching a few fish and also identifying plenty of good looking spots for the last day,” said Borg.
Weighing in a 2.64kg bag for the day the paired weighed in the lightest bag of the field, but better things were just around the corner.
“We knew we were on good fish, we just needed to have the right conditions for them to fire up,” said Borg.
And that’s exactly how day three played out, with Borg and Grima fishing a milk run of spots while they waited for the wind to pick up and the big fish to come out to play.
“The winded picked up about 11am so we made the move to Cleveland,” said Borg.
They timed the move perfectly and slow rolling a black and orange coloured FB35 across the bottom they soon found the big fish eager to play.
“The last hour was the real standout, we upgraded our whole bag and put together a limit that was close to 3.5kg,” said Borg.
Weighing in a 3.44kg limit, the biggest for the day by 400g, the paired moved through from last to first, to then just get beaten by Britton and Wishey by 210g.
“If we got a couple more bigger fish on day two things may have been different, but that’s the way tournament fishing goes,” said Borg.
ABT would like to thank all the teams and Hobie Australasia the event-naming sponsor of the Power-Pole Micro Anchor QLD BREAM Open for making this year’s event another success. – ABT
Britton and Wishey’s victory was based on extensive Moreton Bay experience, a solid foundation of proven fish holding locations, and the ability to hit each of their locations as just the right time.
Rod: Abu Garcia Vanguard 3-5kg (surface), Abu Garcia Vanguard 1-3kg (crank), Berkley Venom 1-3kg (plastics)
Reel: Abu Garcia Revo SX20
Line: Stren Microfuse 3lb, and Spiderwire fluorocarbon 1kg
Leader: 4lb Berkley Trilene flurocarbon (cranks), and 4lb Berkley Trilene mono (surface)
Lures: Berkley 3B Fatdog (shallow and deep) (colours: mongrel, mutt, dirty dog and mowgli), Berkley 3B Scumdog (large) (colours: warrigal, terrier), Cultiva Zip and Ziggy, Berkley Gulp 3 inch Minnows (colours: lime tiger, nuclear chicken) rigged on Nitro Bream Pro jigheads.
Results QLD Open
|1||Bush N' Beach/Berkley||Chris Britton, Anthony Wishey||15/15||9.31||$3,000|
|2||Able Traffic/ Diztek||Darren Borg, Nathan Grima||15/15||9.10||$1,000|
|3||Sunstate Hobie/Majorcraft/13 Fishing||Grayson Fong, Tom Slater||15/15||9.09|
|4||Atomic||Aaron Sharp, Steve Eldred||15/15||9.00|
|5||Samurai Reaction Rods||Tristan Taylor, David McKenzie||15/15||8.33|