March 14-15th Competition

The 8th Rhyll-Phillip Island Angling Club (RPIAC) angling competition, held on the 14th and 15th of March, welcomed Fishcare Victoria for a “Come ‘n’ try Fishing” clinic held on Saturday morning.  Fishcare Victoria is a community based not-for-profit organisation promoting responsible and sustainable fishing practices.  Facilitator, Elysia Gustafson and RPIAC members welcomed youngsters to participate in educational and hands-on activities, including fishing and fish handling.  Participants were lured by this opportunity to learn about responsible and sustainable fishing and enjoyed a fun day which concluded with a sausage sizzle and discussion about the day’s achievements. Special thanks to Elysia Gustafson, Gerry Gibb, Sam Orr and Michael Toovey, who contributed their time and shared their expertise with budding anglers.

Although Saturday’s weather forecast wasn’t particularly conducive to boating a few tested the conditions and others tried some land-based fishing.  Fortunately, the weather conditions were substantially better than the forecast and Sunday saw a massive increase in boating and angling activities.  Participants were treated with sunshine and gentle breezes, enjoying some respite from the fine weather with some light drizzle and occasional gusts.  At the end of the day, all appeared to be dry, warm and smiling.

Consistent with recent fishing reports, there was an abundance of juvenile snapper throughout Western Port over the weekend.  At the conclusion of weigh-in on Sunday afternoon, the eligible species included a total of 36 fish and 1 shark.  The weigh-in masters, Norm Trickey and Sam Orr, were presented with a variety of species including trevally, salmon, pinkie snapper, flathead, King George whiting and mullet.

The post-competition presentation was a great opportunity to celebrate achievements and discuss the possibilities for future success.  Michael Toovey excelled with the barbeque feast, assisted by many volunteers, particularly Debra Orr and Len Bates who ensured all children and adults were catered for.  

The Squidgie Mixed Bag Points competition, to encourage participants aged nine and under, saw runner-up Rhiley Goodwin recognised for his enthusiasm and bag of 1 fish worth 20 points.  The reigning Squidgie Champion, Denver Firth, had a bundle of energy remaining after catching an inspiring 7 fish for a total of 110 points and first place.

The Junior competition was dominated by Pheonix Firth having a great day on the water.  Pheonix weighed-in a King George whiting of 200 grams and a salmon worth 920 points (920 grams) to win the Junior Weight and Junior Points competitions, respectively.

The Senior Heaviest Weight competitions were won by Sam Orr and Debra Orr, weighing-in a pair of turbocharged trevally from the rocks, weighing 1,120 grams and 820 grams, respectively.  The Senior Points competitions, were won by Pat Gleeson and Leah Valente.  Pat battled with an impressive salmon worth 1,835 points (1,835 grams) and Leah fought with a wayward mullet worth 1,498 points (535 grams).  The Senior Shark competition was won by Reg Wenham, who returned from a fishing expedition with a black eye and a Gummy shark weighing 3,135 grams.  Initial reports were that the Gummy really put up a fight, although his skipper for the day declined to share his recollections of the events.  With a secret weight of 427 grams, the closest to the mark was Albert Abram with a healthy King George whiting of 450 grams.

The cash bounties for extraordinary catches are still unclaimed in the members only, competition weekend incentives.  The five species eligible for a first-to-catch prize of $1,000, where fish must be equal to or exceed the nominated weight, are: King George Whiting (1,000 grams), Snapper (10.0 kilograms), Gummy Shark (20.0 kilograms), Mulloway (25.0 kilograms) and Kingfish (25.0 kilograms).

The angling club has decided to stage a special “weekend away” angling competition to support the bushfire affected region of Lakes Entrance from the 3rd to 5th of April.  Accommodation, prizes and supplies for this event are intended to support businesses local to this region of the state.  The next scheduled angling competition for the 2019/2020 season will be held over the weekend of the 18th / 19th of April 2020.  For further information about the club, events, competitions and rules, please visit the website:  www.rpiac.com

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