Vinkeveen Plassen, Wednesday October 8, 2014 –
The 4th Hobie Fishing World Championship presented by Rhino-Rack got off to a great start yesterday as competitors from the 20 nations commenced the first of three days of competition. As daylight hinted its presence anglers stood for the national anthem of the Netherlands and then with the cry of “Power-Poles up” the tournament director sounded a siren for the start of what is already building to be a fantastic event.
The weather, which could be a big leveling factor in the tournament demonstrated by yesterday’s extreme conditions, was uncomfortable at times but never threatening. Widespread rain pelted down occasionally during the day, consistent winds blew at around 35kmh and forced many anglers to fish in protected canals, away from the rough open water and the southern side of the lakes.
There was no reduced session time placed on competitors by the tournament director today. With a 7:30 am start anglers were open to fish the whole arena and were required to hand in their measuring boards and key tags by 3:00pm. A safety system devised to allow event organisers to monitor the arrival of all anglers back at the Rhino-Rack Event Site.
With the first day of competition over, any angler can still take out the title but the bottom half need to improve greatly over the next two days. Day two will separate the field and if any of the top performers from yesterday do well today, it could set them up in a position from which they will be hard to dismantle.
No matter what position anglers are sitting in this morning they shared a day on the water that they will never forget. For all the memories will be good ones but for half the field being on the scored board would improve those memories greatly.
Lars Lundberg from Sweden had a tough time in the Daiwa Pre Fish Day but was really happy to be out on the water for the first day of competition.
“It was an interesting day on the water, the fish were not really biting that well, I caught a few small Perch and I had a couple of Pikes that were too small. I had a few good bites but they were very careful and just spat it out straight away. All in all it was quite a tough day and when the wind picked up I tried to change to the other side of the lake, from the south to the north and I carried on trying and trying, I put my best lures on but they did not appreciate them”.
Staffan Jorup from Stockholm in Sweden is competing in his second Hobie Fishing World Championship after his first experience in Australia last year.
“Today was not fantastic I caught a couple of smaller Perch and then I tried for Pike but I didn’t manage to get one. I hope to get a Pike tomorrow instead. The weather was on and off, in came a little shower but it was ok I think. The wind came up a bit in the afternoon but it was still ok, I think”.
Manfred Gerg from a small town outside of Heidelberg in Germany had a great day in the Daiwa Pre Fish and was unlucky, but happy with his day one on the Vinkeveen Plassen.
“Today was a better day for the strikes, but not for catching the fish. In the morning I was expecting to go for the Zander, I got two strikes for the Zander droping lures to the bottom and lifting the lure up slowly maybe 50cm and then dropping it down. Then I changed my water going to the south side of the lake. Going to fish for a Pike, I caught three small Pike and when I worked my way back across the lake, when it was windy, the Pike were getting larger but they were difficult to catch with no sting on the bite. I lost a large one on the landing, I got him through the gills and on the landing a large wave came from behind and I dropped it”.
The 2011 world champion Scott Baker from Mornington in Victoria, Australia was upbeat about competing in his fourth straight world championship.
“I had a really good day today, I fished with Richard (Somerton) but I dropped a couple of Perch early on and Richard caught a few. Then we headed into a bay, came out and I got a 68cm Pike, and my legs started to shake. I couldn’t even pedal I was that excited. I dropped a couple of other fish near the boat, but that’s fishing. I watched Richard land some absolute behemoths, so that was great fun”.
Steve Lessard from Baton Rouge, Louisiana in southern USA, enjoyed his first day in a Hobie Fishing World Championship. He was interviewed after coming straight off the water and unknown to him at the time he finished day one of the world championship sitting in second place.
“I’m so excited to be here and day one of competition is over, it’s in the books. I had an awesome day. I caught two out of the three species which was very satisfying. I got a Pike and a Perch, a very nice Pike and my Perch is a legal Perch, it’s a 25 but that’s good enough. I’m very excited to try and duplicate that tomorrow and if so, I’ll be in good shape”.
Outstanding Australian angler Richard Somerton form Melbourne and the current World Champion has again confirmed his status, as one of the elite anglers of any kind in the world today, by leading the tournament after day one.
“I did alright today, it started off pretty slow, I could find fish but getting them to bite was pretty hard. I ended up getting a couple of Perch pretty early, so that was alright. Then I gave Scottie (Baker) a bit of a hand with one of his fish and then I picked up a nice Pike myself. I upgraded a Perch later on, while looking for Zander. It was a cracking Perch too, 47 I think”.
The top ten on the Lowrance leader board after day one of the Hobie Fishing World Championship sees a healthy mix of nationalities.
- Richard Somerton AUS 142cm
- Steve Lessard USA 132cm
- Johnson Lee SIN 122cm
- Gianluca Aramini ITA 104cm
- Rob Appleby Goudberg UK 98cm
- Patrick McQuarrie AUS 85cm
- James Darke NZ 85cm
- Kyle Moxon CAN 84cm
- Justin Carter USA 79cm
- Justin Ritchey USA 70cm
At the event dinner tonight Tournament director Keeton Eoff compared the start of the world championship today with the 2012 event in America.
“The spread of anglers in the top ten spans seven different countries and is a reflection of the way the 2nd Hobie Fishing World Championship began in Texas in 2012. Many including those outside of the leaders have a chance to improve their positions on day two, just as happened in the USA”.
Day two is set to be the turning point in the world championship for competitors, who will either see all chance of a podium finish disappear, their positions improved and moving them into a situation where a lucky day three could give them a chance taking a place anywhere in the top ten or for some consolidate further a potential winning position.
As it stands at the completion of day one, anyone still can become the champion of the world, with two solid performances and a little luck thrown in. With day one’s Lowrance Leader Board now posted, there will be a change of plans for many anglers and for those at the top of the board, possibly a repeat of the same successful tactics already employed. However, this is fishing and you need to be where the fish are and where the fish are biting, then lure presentation and lure choice come into play. If this mix doesn’t gel together, the fish won’t come aboard anglers Hobie Pro Angler 12’s and the points required won’t go on the board.
Will anyone catch the elusive Zander and be the first to log in all three predators. Let’s hope the fish are on the bite for day two of this brilliant Hobie Fishing World Championship.
The 4th Hobie Fishing World Championship presented by Rhino-Rack could not have gone ahead without the great support of our tournament sponsors Rhino-Rack, Daiwa, Lowrance, Power-Pole and Ram Mounts.