The 2009 Bass Pro series kick started with the Megabass Lake Glenbawn qualifier, Feb 21-22. It was with much anticipation that anglers gathered for the season opening event, and with a field of 138, including 71 boaters, the competition was intense. The opportunity to qualify for the season ending Grand Final provided added incentive to the lucrative cash and prizes on offer.
With the earlier briefing
times receiving the thumbs up from competitors, and Michael Starkey of Frogleys
Offshore generously donating two Megabass Lures to all competitors the
excitement, regardless of experience, was visible on all competitors. With
Megabass generously following the briefing with a barbeque, the relaxed mood
leading into the first session belied the tough bite that was to eventuate.
Overcoming the slow bite
to finish ahead of the pack was Michael Pascoe, 5/6, 4.6kg. The 24 year old
driver for Origin Energy secured his two fish limit in two of the three
sessions, anchoring his tournament bag with a kicker fish of 1.64kg in the
second session. Pascoe used a pattern established in the prefish to target
suspended fish in 30-40 feet of water. Fishing the main basin area of the dam
Pascoe would sound out the schooled fish and look to target those he could draw
away from the school.
“Keeping the line in the
water and persisting with the technique was the key to securing the bites”,
explained Pascoe. Using a vertical presentation Pascoe would present his lure
by slowly dropping it through the schools. The key was getting individual bass
to break away from the school and follow the lure. Finding the correct depth
often proved to be the challenge: drop too short and you wouldn’t reach the
school, drop too far and a fish may follow only to break away without
enquiring. Indicative of the tough bite was that Pascoe’s five keepers were the
only fish he caught throughout the tournament.
Pascoe’s outfit consisted
of a G Loomis light spin rod teamed with a Shimano Sustain 1000 reel spooled
with 10lb Sunline Castaway braid and 6lb Sunline FC Rock leader. The lure used
to secure Pascoe’s victory was a 3″ Berkley
Jigging Grub in watermelon colour, rigged on a 1/8th oz TT jighead.
Opting to upgrade his tournament entry to Pro proved judicious with Pascoe
securing $1013 to go with the $3600 he received for taking out the tournament
victory. With grand final qualification now taken care of Pascoe looked forward to competing in the seasons remaining
events and securing valuable experience ahead of the seasons finale.
Finishing second behind
Pascoe by a mere 50 grams was 33 year old Bass Pro regular Gregg Flett. Using
the same technique as Pascoe, but fishing at times in water up to 150 feet,
Flett secured a 5/6, 4.55kg bag. Finding the schools holding at 30foot in 90
foot of water, Flett targeted the bass with a 3″ Berkley swimming mullet in camo colour rigged
on a 1/6th oz TT jighead.
Targeting the fish that separated from the school again proved to be the key,
but Flett’s initial decision to use light leader may have cost him the
“Initially I used Sunline
2lb FC Rock leader and subsequently lost fish. Later I upgraded to 4lb which I
stuck with. It probably cost some fish, and maybe even the tournament, but the
nature of the bite was extremely tough, so that was the compromise”, explained
an upbeat Flett.
Flett used a G Loomis DSR
820 rod teamed with a Shimano Twin Power 1000 reel spooled with 3lb Berkley
Crystal Fireline braid and 4lb Sunline FC Rock leader.
Securing second place, as
well as taking out the second place pro payout, proved to be quite a windfall
with Flett taking home over $2500. With Flett also securing the biggest bass
caught on a Megabass lure, a 1.14kg specimen caught in session two, a Megabass
rod courtesy of the event sponsor now has a brand new owner. Flett also looked
forward to the forthcoming season and building on his great start to 2009.
The winning non boater
normally competes as a boater, but due to mechanical issues took up the
challenge nevertheless. Compiling a tournament limit, achieved by no one else
during the tournament, and securing an identical weight to the winning boater
was Wayne Reed with 6/6, 4.6kg. Fishing with Joel Norman for sessions one and
two and with eventual tournament victor Michael Pascoe for the third and final
session, Reed secured his fish in the main basin using the ultra slow vertical
presentation necessary to secure the available fish. Securing only the six fish
presented to the weighmaster, Reed noted that the bites were available, but
that the lightness of the tackle used was paramount.
“Using a light rod with
recoil guides was the difference. Without the necessary sensitivity, detecting
the subtle bites was near impossible”, explained Reed. Reed reveals the key to
the presentation with “The retrieve was ultra, ultra slow. It was a matter of
just focusing and bringing everything together…slowly”.
Reed used a custom
Strudwick 7″ 2-4kg rod teamed with a 2508 Daiwa Steez reel spooled with 4lb
Berkley Crystal Fireline and 5lb Yamatoyo V Hard leader. Reed’s lure
presentation was a 3″ Berkley Swimming Mullet in camo colour rigged on a 1/8th oz TT jighead. Securing an Engel fridge and prize pack for his victory, Reed
was happy with his performance, yet looked forward to competing again as a
boater. Having proved his versatility, have we uncovered the dark horse for
The events Big Bass was
secured in the third and final session by Dan Ryan with a 1.67kg bruiser.
Fishing in the main basin Ryan caught the bass on a Berkley Gulp 3″ grub in pumpkinseed.
Suspended at 30foot in 90 foot of water, the ultra slow vertical presentation
used by the tournament victors proved to be the bass’ undoing. Securing fourth
place overall, Ryan added a further $500 and a Daiwa Advantage reel to his $1000
prize check, making the weekend a trip well worth it for the Queensland based
Sponsors bonuses for this
event reached fever pitch. On top of the existing sponsors incentives, Megabass
threw in a Megabass rod to the heaviest bass caught on a Megabass lure each
session, as well as an overall prize. Gregg Flett and Dave Trinder were worthy recipients,
as was early tournament frontrunner Mark Mangold whom kindly donated the
proceeds of the rods sale to the victims of the Victorian bushfires. As a mark
of respect a minutes silence was held at the beginning of session three to
remember those that had perished in the recent tragedy.
Joel Norman secured the
Daiwa cap prize whilst both Pascoe and Reed scored the TT’s sponsors bonus as
winning boater and non boater. Pascoe capped off his win by also securing the
Sunline sponsors bonus. With so many prizes on offer, it truly pays to use the
great product available from the companies that support ABT and their
Anglers from Japan,
including Megabass Pro Ms. Tami Kashiwabara and Alex Koizumi competed alongside
the tournaments boaters and non boaters. Despite the tough bite, our visitors
enjoyed the camaraderie and hospitality that was on offer and it is with
welcome arms that ABT and all series accepts future international anglers to
Anglers now look towards
the next BASS Pro Qualifier at Lake
Boondooma April 25-26.
With a large turnout expected season 2009 is shaping up to be one of the most
competitive on record. If you are interested in getting into tournament fishing
check out www.australianbass.com.au or contact ABT on 07 3387 0888 for details.
|ABT BASS Pro Series: Megabass Glenbawn BASS Pro Boater
|1||Michael PASCOE||NSW||2||1.6||2||2.22||1||0.78||5||4.6||3600 + 1013 (1st Pro)|
|2||Gregg FLETT||NSW||2||1.39||1||1.14||2||2.02||5||4.55||1890, 675 (2nd Pro) +
Megabass Big Bass Overall (1.14kg)
|5||Dan RYAN||QLD||1||0.71||2||1.34||1||1.67||4||3.72||1000 + 500 Daiwa Big
Bass & Daiwa Advantage reel(1.67kg S3)
|11||Tim MORGAN||QLD||2||1.39||2||1.6||4||2.99||580 + 338 (3rd Pro)|
|15||Stephen KANOWSKI||QLD||1||0.71||1||0.96||1||0.63||3||2.3||225 (4th Pro)|
|23||Mark MANGOLD||NSW||2||1.69||2||1.69||Megabass Big Bass S1
BASS Pro Series: Megabass Glenbawn BASS Pro Non-Boater Results
|1||Wayne REED||NSW||2||1.64||2||1.49||2||1.47||6||4.6||Engel Fridge &
|2||Mark LENNOX||NSW||2||1.29||2||1.68||4||2.97||G.Loomis GCR rod
& prize pack
|3||Luke NOVAK||NSW||2||1.42||2||1.25||4||2.67||Team Daiwa 701MLFS
rod, Daiwa Heartland reel & prize pack
|4||Jaimen TUNSTALL||Qld||1||0.85||2||1.74||3||2.59||Tica Splender reel,
Shakespeare Agility rod & prize pack
|5||Bernard AUSTIN||NSW||1||0.47||1||0.74||2||1.3||4||2.51||TT lure pack &
|6||Travis CAMPBELL||NSW||2||1.68||1||0.65||3||2.33||Spotters pack &
|7||Neil HOCKEY||NSW||1||0.46||2||1.06||1||0.68||4||2.2||Ugly Fish sunglasses
pack & prize pack
|8||Freddie SAWYER||Qld||1||0.66||1||0.67||1||0.84||3||2.17||Shimano Catana rod
& prize pack
|9||Michael WALMSLEY||NSW||2||2.1||2||2.1||Squidgy tackle bag
& prize pack
|10||David WELFARE||NSW||1||0.66||2||1.43||3||2.09||Prize pack|
|14||David TRINDER||NSW||2||1.55||2||1.55||Megabass Big Bass S2
|34||Lance John SIM||NSW|
|34||Raymond Anthony BORG||NSW|