Tasmanian Trout Classic Final – Round 3 Nov 29 and 30th Arthurs Lake
Round Two Tas Trout Classic – wrap up.
It was tournament time again for Tasmanian anglers with round 2 of the TAS Trout Classic Series run and won in the central highlands. Weather conditions were very challenging which created quite a lot of drama for the 33 entered teams.
The Tonic Eyewear Great Lake Classic got underway with the compulsory briefing at the Great Lake Hotel on Friday evening. One lucky entrant again walked away with a LOX Ambassador Hybrid Series rod valued at $350. Most entrants enjoyed the hospitality of the Hotel prior to the briefing with good food and cold drinks.
Day 1 greeted teams at the Swan Bay ramp with a stiff northerly wind blowing down the lake. The sheltered water in Swan Bay not giving away too much as to the conditions in the lake proper. As the team numbers were called most boats headed straight to the main lake and rounding the Beehives Point headed off in the various directions chosen to start their days. It was very uncomfortable to say the least. Teams headed in their chosen directions fanning out from the Beehives Point.
Throughout the morning the wind picked up making for some of the most challenging conditions ever witnessed on a freshwater lake, certainly under tournament guidelines. By early afternoon most boats had called it a day and headed in before the 2pm cut off time. Several boats had submarined through waves with Shane Ling from Team Howler/Zipbaits having his auto inflating life jacket go off when hit by a wave. Great to know they work as intended. The GoPro footage seen after the event from many entrants was a spectacle that’s for sure.
The fishing was far from easy. At the end of Day 1 results it was Team Howler/Tonic; Justin Causby and Tim Lowe leading the field with 15 fish, just 22cm ahead of Team Cranka; Andrew Cox and Steve Steer with 14 trout. In third was Team Howler/Zipbaits with 10 fish. The rest of the field were in single figures back to the dreaded donuts. It was a tough day on the water!
Day 2 was to be very similar but with a wind shift to the west which would hopefully reduce the wave size on the main lake area. Team Howler/Tonic lead the field away and as teams rounded the Beehives were greeted by much calmer conditions. This didn’t last long however, the strong westerly had turned the lake into a white capped slurry once again with only the immediate water on the western shore calm enough to run at open throttle.
It made for tough fishing with smaller bags from most teams. If you improved your tally from Day 1 you were bound to climb the leader board such were the conditions once again.
Many teams pulled up stumps well before cut-off and a few boats were in trouble stuck in Todds Corner and Team Cranka in the far north of the lake also experiencing engine trouble.
Back at the results and it was a very tight finish. First place would go to count back for the second round running.
Justin Causby and Tim Lowe at Team Howler Rods/Tonic Eyewear with their 8 fish Day 2 bag were lucky enough to hold it out and take the win and 2x Howler Custom Rods and cash. Team Burns Living Dead: Laurie Harrison and Martin Exel jumped to second and won the two pairs of Tonic polaroids and cash. Holding on to third was Team Howler/Zipbaits: Shane Ling and Gary Alexander taking the Cranka Lures pack and cash prize. The unlucky Team Cranka: Andrew Cox and Steve Steer, with engine troubles in rough were unable to get their key tag back to the board before 2pm. A 15 minute penalty reduced their 13 fish bag to effectively just a few fish costing them the outright win. Even with the penalty they held on for 6th showing just how well they performed over the weekend.
Around $5000 in cash and prizes were awarded over the weekend. Round 3 is at Arthurs Lake on November 29th-30th.
Team Burns Living Dead lead the Team of the Year standings on 6 points ahead of a group of teams on 9-12 points. They will be very hard to beat with a firm grip on the trophy and the Lowrance HDS9 Touch, going into the last round.