claims BASS Pro Crown
Kerry Symes, a
47 year old BP Reliance Manager claimed his first BASS Pro victory by winning
the biggest prize in tournament bass fishing, the BASS Pro Grand Final.
Compiling a 6/6, 10.055kg limit for
the event, Symes showed he could take it to the big names, outclassing the rest
of the field, and securing victory over runner up and AFC angler Harry Watson.
Choosing a tandem lure approach to
fill his bag, Symes moved in to second place in session one and held his spot
before ascending to the number one spot in the last session on Sunday morning.
“I cracked the pattern during the prefish
on Friday, and I was confident that it would produce during the tournament”,
The technique for the Kerry involved
fishing a 17-19 feet deep flat near Queen
Street, and working an alternative presentation,
swapping between a Jackall Mask and spinnerbait as the bite required.
“A couple of non-tournament anglers pulled up near us on the Saturday and
nailed two quick fish on a spinnerbait”, explained Symes.
“This was the tip I needed to start throwing a spinnerbait”, he added.
The retrieve for the Mask approach
involved working the lure with two small hops then allowing it fall back towards
the bottom on a tight line.
“Staying in touch with lure on the drop was important, as was keeping the
lure close to the bottom where the fish were holding, it allowed me to feel the
smallest of takes and keep the lure in the zone where the fish were”, explained
The spinnerbait technique was equally as in your face, with a long cast
and a slow rolling retrieve with the lure ticking just above the bottom the gun
The consistency of the bite was typical Somerset, with an intermintent pattern dominating
“They’d light up for periods then quiet down again”, explained Symes.
“When they were on they’d move up onto the top of the flat and eagerly
feed, then they’d drop back and scatter and you had to work a lot harder to get
them”, he added.
Symes’ choice of tackle used to deliver his win included two outfit
choices. A 7’ Shimano T-Curve Tournament spin rod, Shimano 2500 Aspire reel,
10lb Castaway mainline, and 14lb Stren Magna Thin when hoping Masks, and a 7’ Shimano
Raider Dam Buster rod, Shimano Calcutta 200DC reel, 30lb Bass Hard line, and 20lb
Water King leader when fishing a spinnerbait.
Symes choice of lures included the popular Jackall Mask in Tennessee Shad
colour, and a 5/8 oz Smak spinnerbait in Kerry’s very own colour known as KS.
“This is my go-to spinnerbait and it fired over the weekend, delivering
the majority of my bigger fish”, explained Kerry.
The other notable component to Symes success was the application of the new
Shimano S-Factor bass scent.
“This was so important, turning lookers into keepers”, explained Symes.
“I added it the lure every four or five casts, and for me it was one of
the keys to getting fish while others struggled”, Kerry concluded.
Post victory Symes was quick to divulge his mindset heading into the
“Doing the Humminbird BASS MegaBucks two days before the Grand Final was
a huge advantage, the social and open vibe of the event has us all in a good
frame of mind by the time we reached Somerset”, explained Symes.
The upside of this, other than the obvious was that Kerry failed to
suffer from nerves, even heading in to the final session with so much as stake.
The winner of the Somerset BASS Pro Qualifier in August, Harry Watson lived
up to his predicted form on the waterway, compiling a 6/6, 9.76kg limit to
secure second place.
Fishing close to the area that produced the winning fish for him during
his August victory, Watson worked an 80 metre stretch of water 25-26 feet deep.
Like many in the field Harry opted for a hoping Mask approach to fill his
“It was a classic hoping Mask pattern”, explained Watson.
“Involving working the lure through the zone and past the bottom hugging
fish with a series of lift and drops”, he added.
Hitting the jack pot and bagging out early in session two Watson was back
at the weigh-in tent with two hours left to go in the session.
“There was no point staying out there as I wasn’t going to get any fish
bigger than what I had”, explained Watson.
With a 4.22kg limit it was a safe and secure step to take and ensured
that he didn’t loose any fish in the hot conditions.
Watson’s choice of tackle included a G.Loomis 8400 Popping Rod, 2500
Shimano Sustain reel, spooled with 8lb Platypus Superbraid and 12lb Siglon
Harry’s money bait was the ubiquitous Jackall Mask, in two colours, a
black chartreuse version, and the latest, yet unreleased grunter colour.
The battle for the Champion Non-boater title was a laissez faire with
Paul Cooper winning the title by over three kilos, (5/6, 9.315kg).
Fishing with fifth placed boater Craig Simmons
on day one and Mike Creighton on day two, Cooper cleaned up, hoping Jackall
Masks to claim his first tournament win.
“Keeping the lure in touch with the bottom was the key to getting the
fish”, explained Cooper.
Hitting the fish early on the final morning Cooper had two in the well
and was back weighing in his limit by 6.30am.
“The fish had taken the lure down deep and I didn’t want to risk the fish
dying”, explained Cooper.
Cooper’s arsenal of tournament winning tackle included a 7’, 3-5kg Black
Diamond spin rod, Daiwa TD Advantage reel, spooled with 6lb Berkley Fireline
and 12lb Vanish leader.
Overall accolades go to Champion Boater Kerry Symes, who picked up the
highly coveted BASS Grand Final Champion Trophy, and a trip to the USA to fish a
Information for the 2008 BASS
Pro Series will be available in the 2007 Tournament Anglers Guide, mailed to
all ABT members in 2007. Call ABT during business hours (07) 3268 3992 for more
BASS Pro Grand Final Boaters Results
|1||Kerry SYMES||QLD||2||4.08||2||2.83||2||3.145||6||10.055||Trip to the USA to fish bass tournament|
BASS Pro Grand Final Non-Boaters Results
|1||Paul COOPER||QLD||2||4.145||1||1.55||2||3.62||5||9.315||Stessco 4.2 Catcher|