Team Prostrike grab a Gippy win
  |  First Published: September 2016

The Weekend of 18-19 June saw 49 teams of two anglers each brave the cold snap that hit the Gippsland Lakes to compete in the Club Marine East Gippsland Bream Classic. Along with wanting to win the tournament, many teams also had their eyes on gaining much needed points for the always popular Club Marine Team Of The Year Championship awarded to the team that fishing the most consistently for the entire five round series.

As this was the 4th round of the series, it was time for teams to make their charge to stay in the hunt for the Team of the Year title.

Local Team Prostrike’s Peter Stephens and Bradley Baade made the decision to fish in pretty much the total opposite direction to the majority of the field as they concentrated on fishing the Lakes Entrance area.

“Friday’s prefish started off like every other prefish we’ve done on the Gippy Lakes and having launched at Lakes Entrance we headed up North Arm to look for any sign that the fish might be in the area. Having located one such area we decided it was time to see what was around,” Peter said.

After Peter threw a Smith Camion and Brad a shallow Pontoon 21 Greedy Guts for a while, it was time for the boys to change over to plastics, as the bites just weren’t coming.

Brad tried numerous plastics while Pete stuck with the ZMan Slim Swim in the motor oil colour. A couple of hours passed fairly quickly, and with only a couple of low to mid 30cm fish landed, it was time for them to have a good look around.

“Having fished the area for the last 35 years with bait ,and more recently lures, we didn’t need to waste time looking in areas that hadn’t produced in the past. One area in particular held the quality of fish we were looking for, and while not in numbers, they made up for it in quality.” Peter said.

Day one saw the boys head to this same area. Pete armed with his Duff Rods matched to Shimano Reels and Brad with his Tica and Nitro Rods matched to Shimano Reels. Using 10lb Castaway braid and 4lb Sunline FC Rock leader, Brad tied on a ZMan GrubZ in bloodworm on a 1/12oz jighead and Peter a ZMan Slim Swim in motor oil on a 1/16oz jig head.

“Within the hour we had our first fish in the well, a yellowfin of 1.4kg that went like a train in the 1m of water we were fishing. Two hours later our 2nd fish hit the deck, also on the Slim Swim, but a black of 3cm to the fork. It was time to check out a couple of other spots with no luck, so back to the area that saw us pull our first fish. The next hour saw us fill our limit and upgrade the one smaller black bream, finishing the day in second place with a 5/5 bream bag of 5.74 kg,” Pete said.

The lead team after day one was Team Minn-Kota’s Cameron Whittam and Warren Carter, with a cracking bag of 5/5 bream for 6.13kg, which would be the Maria Lures Best Bag for the weekend.

On day two the boys went back to the same area and used the same lures as Day one, but it was an unlucky start as Brad dropped a quality fish on his 3rd cast of the day, flowed by no bites for the next couple of hours.

“With the day one spots not producing any fish, it was time to have a look elsewhere, but with limited results we headed back to a spot that had produced fish over the last few years and a stretch of bank 200m long had us with our bag in an hour. These were mostly quality fish with one smaller fish of around 33cm fork length,” Pete said.

Then in a stroke of luck on the last cast of the day before racing back to weigh in, they managed to land a cracking bream measuring 41cm to the fork,weighing 1.54kg that took their day two bag to 5/5 bream and 5.11kg. With a total of 10/10 bream for 10.85kg, it all rested on whether Team Minn-Kota could produce a similar bag to day one, but when their day two bag could only push the scale to 4.11kg, it was confirmed that Team Pro-Strike’s Peter Stephens and Bradley Baade were the 2016 Club Marine East Gippsland Bream Classic Champions.

Weighing in a cracking bream weighing 1.56kg was Team The Old Boys Brien and Michael Pelle, which handed them the JML Anglers Alliance Big Bream and with a great day two bag weighing 4.79kg, moving them up 19 places on the board and handing them the Hurricance Monster Movers prizes was Team Puppetry of the Crab’s Steve Wheeler and Darren Weda.

After the winter break, next stop will see the 2016 Atomic Vic Bream Classic Series head to Nelson for the fifth and Final qualifying round the Hobie Bream Classic. For more information please visit www.vicbreamclassics.com.au or like us on facebook at https://www.facebook.com/vicbreamclassics. - Vic Bream Classics

PlaceTeamTFTW (kg)
4Colac Tackle – Samurai Rods10/108.87
5Chemically Sharp8/108.66
7Shoreline 8910/108.50
8Club Marine Fishing10/108.32
10Bream By Stealth10/107.81
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