Sensational winter weather greeted 67 boats and 132 anglers for the start of the Triton Boats Gold Coast BREAM Challenge.
Under clear skies and with a different Gold Coast bream bite testing anglers’ skills, one angler showed he was up to the task, easily eclipsing the rest of the field to capture victory.
Claiming his second tournament win for the year was Jay Morgan of Brisbane. Compiling a 10/10, 7.77kg limit for the two-day event, Morgan was the only angler in the field to break the 7kg barrier, and in doing so, set a new all-time big bag limit for the popular tournament venue.
Snapping at Morgan’s heels in second place was Gold Coast local and newly crowned Lowrance Queensland BREAM Angler of Year, Kelvin Williams, who compiled a 10/10, 6.46kg limit to secure his highest placing in an ABT BREAM event, and a highly coveted berth at the 2005 Grand Final.
Morgan spent the duration of the tournament fishing the Casino and Gold Coast Convention reach of Nerang’s canal system. Targeting the bridge-dwelling bream in the area, Morgan leap frogged from one structure to another, presenting his lure to the fish holding tight at the base of the pylons.
The technique proved incredibly productive for Morgan, with his day two limit (4.15kg) bigger than his day one limit – a difficult task in any tournament.
“The fishing on Sunday was outstanding,” Morgan explained.
“It seemed wherever I threw my lure, fish were there and ready to chew,” he added.
The result was the largest limit for the event and a great 1.2kg specimen that was pulled from the base of a pylon of the Gold Coast Convention Bridge.
Morgan’s tournament-winning lure was the 3” Berkley Gulp Minnow (pumpkinseed), rigged on 1/12oz and 1/8oz TT Light Wire jigheads.
Morgan’s outfit consisted of a Pflueger 2-5kg, 7’ rod, matched to a Pflueger Medalist 30 reel, spooled with 6lb Berkley Fireline, and finished off with 4lb and 6lb Yamatoyo Pro fluorocarbon leader.
Runner-up Kelvin Williams chose a significantly different approach, fishing the Gold Coast Seaway and Wave Break Island area to fill his tournament bag each day.
Fishing rock-bottomed areas inside the Seaway (45-50 feet) and open flats areas adjacent to Wave Break Island (23- 27 feet), Williams used a vertical jigging technique to catch his quarry.
Casting upcurrent and allowing his lure to drift back until it was vertical under his boat and rod tip, Williams retrieved his lure with a lift/drop movement of his forearm. This allowed him to keep a tight connection to his lure and gave him the ability to drop his lure back to the fish when needed.
“The use of a stiff enough rod to work the plastic, set the hook and stay in contact with lure was the key with the technique,” Williams explained. For Williams that ideal rod was actually a series of Berkley Drop Shot models, all 4kg and 7 foot, and matched to a range of Daiwa 1500 Team Advantage and Capricorn reels.
The remainder of Williams’ tackle included, 4lb Berkley Fireline, 6lb Berkley Vanish fluorocarbon leader, and 1/4oz, 1/0 and 2/0 TT jigheads. His lure was a 3” Berkley Gulp Minnow, also in pumpkinseed colour.
One of the notable occurrences for Williams on day one was the loss of two hours’ fishing time, due to a bout of seasickness experienced by his non-boater, Peter Kelleher. A dose of medication and some recovery time in more stable water soon had the pair back at the Seaway and catching fish.
The title of champion non-boater for the event was claimed by Sydney breamer Richard Robson. Compiling a 10/10, 5.59kg for the event, he easily captured the title and bounty of prizes that accompany it.
Fishing the Seaway area on day one with Adam Ward, and the same location with Drew Griffith on day two, Robson perfectly mastered the conditions and the bream bite on offer.
Fishing to the reef-hugging bream scattered throughout the region, Robson drifted over the structure, using a dead stick and draw presentation to tempt the fish holding at depth.
Robson’s choice of tackle used to secure his win included a Black Diamond, Flats Ranger 2-5kg, 7-foot rod. This was matched to a Shimano Twin Power reel, loaded with 4lb Berkley Fireline and finished off with 6lb Nitlon leader. His lure was a 3” Berkley Gulp Minnow in smelt colour, rigged on 1/6oz Nitro jighead.
The Go-So Big Bream prize changed many hands throughout the tournament before being claimed by Gold Coast local Steve Wilson for his outstanding 1.24kg specimen. Captured in the Jumpinpin area, the fish was a great example of the fish on offer at Queensland’s premier bream fishery.
For more information visit www.bream.com.au or phone Simon Goldsmith on (07) 3268 3992 (b/h) or 0427 326 464 (b/h).