Rainbow Beach is arguably the prettiest venue for a fishing competition on the eastern seaboard. Hardly surprising, this town is also one of Queensland's hottest tourist fishing destinations thanks to the rolling beaches, rocky headlands, estuaries and fantastic offshore reefs to explore.
It's one of those places where nothing seems to be far away, making it the ideal venue for the Mitsubishi Rainbow Beach Fishing Classic held under the patronage of the Rainbow Beach community's Sports and Recreation Club. The annual Fishing Classic is quite a unique event in it's own right and all proceeds are returned to the local community and charities. It tends to generate a lot of community involvement and overall goodwill.
Mitsubishi Motors are the major naming sponsor and other proud contributors, including the Queensland Government through the State Events Regional Development Program, are happy to be involved.
This year's Family Fishing Classic was very well attended and it encompassed a large fishing area from Eurong, Fraser Island, through to south of the Noosa River. Such a wide area continues to make the event both environmentally viable as well as sustainable.
Many competitors camped on the beach and fished outside their tents, others drove the beach in their 4WDs. The ramps at Bullock and Carlo Points saw plenty of boats coming and going throughout the Classic.
A total prize pool of over $100,000 is divided among winners of various categories denoted as Jew Fish, Beach Fish, Reef Fish plus Daily First and runner up categories. There was also an extensive kid's category where the heaviest fish within designated categories will take out prizes, along with random draws.
Random draws are also used to award other major prizes of up to $1,000 apiece which emphasizes the free and easy spirit of the event rather than a hardcore winner-take-all mentality. And the grand finale big draw down prize is a real nail-biter, too.
With it's emphasis on family fishing and the very laid back atmosphere there was an almost carnival like feel to the recent Classic. It was great to see youngsters as well as Mum’s and Dad’s lining up to happily weigh-in fish and receive prizes.
This year's Mitsubishi/Rainbow Beach Fishing Classic ran from Friday 20 July to Saturday 28 July. As the week progressed the catches simply improved with the weather.
On the second last day Greg Pearce of Rainbow Beach weighed-in with a snodger of a red emperor at 15.5kg.This saw him eventually take out overall winner of the Reef Fish category. Mike Lynch of Rainbow Beach was nearly there with the head and shoulders of an emperor that had been worked over by the men in grey coats. The head weighed over 11kg.
Other meritorious catches included the fantastic snapper of Geoff Robinson at 8kg and David Arthur's jew at 10.74kg. Anyone who saw Wayne Young's magnificent 635gm whiting agreed it was a real elbow-slapper, and among the juniors young Tayla Caffery-Stewart caught the best tailor at 895gm.
In the suspense-filled grand finale, the adult draw saw 24 prizes won with the lucky Patricia Leach from Noosaville going home $10,000 richer for first prize. Second prize of $3,000 went to Heather Dauth of Maleny and the third prize of $1,500 awarded to Ian Chesmar of Christchurch New Zealand. As they say, ‘winners are grinners’ and the smiles just kept coming as Steve Machar, Mitsubishi Motors Regional Manager awarded the prizes and passed on the congratulations.
Next year's Mitsubishi Rainbow Beach Fishing Classic promises to be bigger and better than ever and it's certainly an event to look forward to. Keep the last week in July free and organize an entry through --e-mail address hidden-- or ring (07) 54863191 for details.
|Tailor||Ross Stockwell||2.6250 kg|
|Bream||Robert Tunney||1.1150 kg|
|Whiting||Wayne Young||0.6350 kg|
|Dart||Drew Gardiner||0.5650 kg|
|Flathead||Max De Beer||2.2600 kg|
|Jew||David Arthur||10.740 kg|
|Red emperor||Greg Pearce||15.050 kg|
|Snapper||Geoff Robinson||8.0050 kg|
|Parrot||Ernie Daniels||3.3750 kg|
|Pearl perch||Robert Ovens||5.4450 kg|
|Sweet lip||Cec Cross||6.8750 kg|
|Tailor||Tayla Caffery-Stewart||0.8950 kg|
|Bream||Katelin Roberts||0.6250 kg|
|Whiting||Kaleb Hamilton||0.5250 kg|
|Dart||Cody Doolan||0.4600 kg|
|Flathead||Braden Blake||0.9950 kg|