In October 2004 I was fortunate to qualify for the ABT Bream Grand Final as a boater. My challenge was securing a boat to fish from, as I am based in Perth and it would have cost over $1000 to ship my own boat to Forster, let alone spend two weeks driving with my own boat to Forster at an even greater cost.
My partner, Miriam, had also made it into the Grand Final and secured a boat to use from Mark at Bassmaster. Her next mission was to find one for me. Miriam contacted Terrace Boating at Raymond Terrace, just north of Newcastle, and spoke to the sales manager, Pat Turner. Right from the start Pat was more than helpful and willing to lend me a boat for the Grand Final.
Not only did Terrace Boating lend me a boat, but it was a brand-new Quintrex 435 Hornet fitted with a 50hp Yammy four-stroke tiller-steer and a 55lb Riptide Minn Kota. This boat was awesome and performed better than I had expected.
I was not a huge fan of Hornets but this boat has changed my mind. The hull shape has been improved from the previous model and the subtle change was definitely noticeable. The grip in tight turns and planing performance was second to none.
It was also very windy for the pre-fish and first day of the competition and the boat handled the chop with ease. The hull bottom is 3mm and combined with bracing of the ribs to the gunwales, performed with nice solid feel that softened the lumps without the typical tinny bash and rattle. This came as a very pleasant surprise.
The new range of Yamaha four-strokes fitted with EFI are an absolute dream. The motor needed to be run in and I accomplished that with ease with varied throttle settings and short sprints from half to full throttle.
It was fortunate that Forster had very fishable territory only two minutes from the start line. The motor was run in after 10 hours use and the improvement in response was noticeable, silky-smooth and with a good deal of available grunt.
Do not be put off four-strokes by those that say they are great on fuel but heavy or slow. The new mid-range Yamaha is comparable in weight to the similar size Mercury and Evinrude two-strokes.
A big thankyou must go to Pat and the crew at Terrace Boating. They have the full range of Hornets in their yard, along with many other boats. Pat and his team will ensure that any purchase made from their yard will be backed up with excellent after-sales advice. If you are thinking of purchasing a new or second-hand boat don’t forget to give these guys a look. I don’t think you will be disappointed.