Vinkeveen Plassen, Tuesday October 7, 2014 –
The 4th Hobie® Fishing World Championship presented by Rhino-Rack got off to an excellent start yesterday, as anglers took to the waters of Vinkeveense Plassen in windy and choppy conditions.
The tournament venue of Vinkeveen is located approximately 20km outside the beautiful, canal lined city of Amsterdam. The region surrounds a huge man made lake, which was carved out of a low-lying peat wetland area, over a period of hundreds of years. This continual, long-term peat cutting has created bodies of water that separate narrow strips of land housing shacks, gardens and natural vegetation. The deep, cut out, canals offer protection from wind and related heavy chop when conditions turn foul. The small islands, where the cut out peat was originally piled to dry, provide structural habitat and overhangs from which the predatory Pike, Zander and Perch ambush their prey.
Vinkeveen was a buzz yesterday morning as anglers from 20 countries spanning 4 continents prepared for their first session on the tournament arena. The Lowrance Navigation Day provided the opportunity for competitors to reconnoiter the venue before the commencement of the three-day competition.
Hobie Kayak Europe supplied and kitted out the 50, of the new 2015 model Hobie Pro Angler 12 kayaks for the event. Seen for the first time on European waters yesterday, you could literally feel the excitement as the world championship anglers prepared the kayaks for the first time.
Personalised with individual competitor names and national flags on the bow of each boat, and branded with Rhino-Rack, Daiwa, Lowrance, Power-Pole and Ram Mounts sponsor decals, the lineup of kayaks was a sight to see as they gathered together on the water.
The rules for the session forbid any fishing tackle to be taken aboard the kayaks yesterday. Anglers were allowed to make visual observations and gather information about structure, locations, distances, and water conditions only. Using the Lowrance Elite 4 HDI sounders, mounted on the H-rail of each Hobie kayak, they surveyed the topography of the lakebed to locate and identify underwater structure and vegetation as well as locate areas where fish were congregating and to identify the species.
Staffan Jorup from Sweden offered his thoughts about the Lowrance Navigation Day. “It was incredible I had a steep learning curve and now have a good feeling about tomorrow. I can’t wait to see if the Pike I saw on the sounder will bite the lure as well. The weather will be interesting tomorrow. Different reports say that the fishing is going to be good, but others say that it may not be as good, so tomorrow may have a few surprises because I saw some big fish today”.
James Darke from New Zealand had this to say about his navigation session on Vinkeveense Plassen today. “I had a day off the water today, I had bad back issues, so I thought that if I was to miss a day on the water it might as well be the day I’m not fishing. I’ll try and make up for it tomorrow, get out and find fish and scout, all at the same time. Today I walked as far as I could around the arena on foot and a came across several Perch. I didn’t see any Pike or Zander, but as far as the Perch are concerned, I saw several that were over 40cm, so it will be interesting to see what’s hanging around when things get started”.
Ivan Pedro Aspas Asnar Spain’s sole representative said. “It was a great day for navigation. I found about 25 waypoints. I also saw several schools of fish with large predators underneath and I’ve got a couple of little secret locations that I’m going to investigate tomorrow”.
Sam Fu the Team manager of the Chinese team spoke on behalf of the competitors in the Chinese squad.n “The team has had pedaled around the whole lake, the south side and the north side and we have found a lot of Pike and groups of Perch, we haven’t seen any Zander yet but we have been working out some tactics so that in the Pre Fish Day we can catch one of them”.
Two time, Hobie Fishing World Championship competitor and Netherlands representative Daniel van der Post believed the navigation day to be a valuable exercise, but tomorrow is a higher level of importance. “I think the navigation day was well organized, Hobie had some good local fishermen show the competitors the area and all the potential fishing spots. Tomorrow the Daiwa Pre Fish Day will be more important when each angler can find his own way on the Vinkeveense Plassen”.
The official welcoming dinner closed out the day. Each angler was invited up to say a few words and receive their “Goodie Pack” donated by the event sponsors and Hobie Kayaks Europe. The great night was one of humour, camaraderie and team bonding, but anglers now have the rest of the night to think about the observations they made and the knowledge they gained on the water during navigation.
Some will share parts of their discoveries, others may share all they learned and others will keep the information gained to them selves. But all anglers will be putting the ideas they have formulated into practice today, in their first chance to take on the Perch, Zander and the massive Pike of Vinkeveen in the non-competitive Daiwa Pre Fish Day. A day that will provide, these elite kayak anglers the necessary information to develop a plan of attack to employ on Tuesday, the opening day of competition.
There is no doubt, the excitement continues to build!
The Hobie Fishing World Championship IV 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.
For more information including rules biographies, interviews, videos, location information and a whole lot more go to www.hobiefishingworlds.com