Competitors were greeted with cloudy skies for the first round of the 2016 Bluefin/ePropulsion BASS Electric Series. Throughout the session anglers were subjected to numerous squalls, but this did nothing to dampen the mood of what was a fantastic event. Anglers that adapted to these conditions reaped the rewards, with 41 bass brought to the scales with an average weight of 705g – a fantastic average for this fishery.
Taking out top honours amongst was ABT veteran Tony Thorley with a 2/2 limit for 1.77kg. Thorley targeted fish in the back of a weed-choked bay, where he used the overcast conditions to his advantage. Throwing a top-water presentation of a Jackall Mask Frog, Thorley would cast the lure deep into the water lilies and work the lure slowly, waiting for a bass to explode from underneath the vegetation.
Once his surface bite had slowed, Thorley moved to the edge of the weed and worked a small jerkbait, namely an Imakatsu RipRizer, which helped him capture a few late upgrades, one of which was the events big bass of 950g.
Thorley relied on a Daiwa Zero rod, paired with a Daiwa Luvias spooled with Toray Light Jigging PE to present his offerings to the hungry bass.
2015 Clarrie Hall champion, Chesley Lennon, took out second place, missing out on the top spot by the smallest measureable margin, a mere 10g. Weighing a 2/2 limit for 1.76kg, Chesley targeted a small area in the middle reaches of the lake were he worked a small section of bank with two techniques. He opted to fish a OSP I-Waver when the clouds would come over and then switched to a deep Jackall Chubby when the sun would burn through the clouds.
Jack Gold took out third place with 2/2 for 1.70kg. Jack fished the upper reaches of the lake to find his limit. Jack positioned his boat so he could target the small weed pockets with his Mazzy Popper, catching plenty of fish off the surface to great success.
Rod: Daiwa Zero
Reel: Daiwa Luvias 2000
Line: Toray Light Jigging PE
Lure: Jackall Mask Frog, Imakatsu RipRizer 60
Thorley identified the surface bite was only active when the clouds and rain were present, as soon as this ended, he quickly switched to the subsurface jerk bait presentation to secure a few late upgrades.