Annual Senior Presentation Night

The Rhyll-Phillip Island Angling Club (RPIAC) closed-out their 2021/2022 angling competition with the Annual Seniors Presentation Night held at the Phillip Island Golf Club on the 14th of May.  Anglers and supporters were relieved that they finally had an opportunity to celebrate the resumption of the social event, the achievements of anglers, and the dedicated support of members.

Guests were entranced by the musical talents of local artists, Travis Thompson and Steve Gijsbers, singing along to classic tunes and dancing to the energy of guitar and drums.  Their energy was sustained thanks to the delicious feast prepared by Frank Velardi, Andrew Ingliss and team, as well as the refreshing beverages served by the welcoming bar staff at the golf club.

Considering the challenges associated with the pandemic and the ability of hospitality venues to open their doors, the angling club is experiencing a resurgence of interest from anglers and Phillip Island locals.  RPIAC is open to members and visitors on Friday evening from 5 pm and hosts scheduled angling competition weekends through spring, summer, and autumn each year.  The club promotes responsible and sustainable fishing practices and supports and assists in developing an interest in fishing for youngsters, families and locals.

Thankfully, the efforts of angling club members and visitors have spread word about the club and the Rhyll Boat Ramp Upgrade will also create more interest in the club and local area.  RPIAC president, Albert Abram, spoke of the commitment, presence, and willingness of members to volunteer, which has welcomed newcomers and revived the club’s atmosphere.  He announced Daisy Weir as the recipient of this year’s “President’s Award” and the crowd’s applause affirmed the recognition of her service to the Rhyll-Phillip Island Angling Club.

Every year, RPIAC entices members to engage in the season’s angling competitions, offering weekend and annual and prizes.  Throughout the season, participants are entered into the 365-Competition, Reverse Draw, and Club Championship.

The 365-Competition, acknowledged the best fish of each species caught throughout the previous 365 days.  Pat Gleeson had a very impressive tally of 5 biggest-fish species, with his commemorative plaque citing Couta (1370 grams), Flathead (2795 grams), Kingfish (3605 grams), Leatherjacket (982 grams) and Salmon (1822 grams).  James Nicolaci caught the biggest Snapper (8085 grams), Wayne Izzard coaxed the best King George Whiting (740 grams), and Peter Cubeta wrestled with the best School/Gummy Shark (9500 grams).  Helen Ismail impressed as a newcomer to the competition and trumped with the best Trevally (1030 grams), whilst Matthew Ellenford received his first plaque for a Pike (1150 grams).  The remaining plaques were awarded to Steve Bland, in stitches for his Tailor (305 grams), Albert Abram for the biggest Mackerel (350 grams), and Brendan Garlepp for his Grass/Stranger Whiting (245 grams).

Club Secretary and Weigh-in Master, Russell Gallagher, concluded the Reverse Draw, picking the last entry from the bucket and announced Albert Abram as the prize winner.  Amusingly, Albert was also the recipient of the award that nobody wants, the RPIAC Merle Award, which recognises angler-related incidents including mishaps and errors of judgement in the previous year.  Attendees were all hopeful for the Haymes Paint Shop Bluetooth Speaker door prize and Isabella Bland had the winning ticket, staking a claim for more music.  The evenings presentations concluded with the announcement of the top-3 Female and Male Club Champions.

The 2022 Female Club Champions were:  Tenille Preddice, in 3rd place with a total of 8601 units, Kate Jinnette, in 2nd place with a total of 15732 units, and, by less than a fish, Carrieanne Peatey finished the season in 1st place with 16007 units.  The 2022 Male Club Champions were:  Steve Bland, in 3rd place with a total of 20758 units, Pat Gleeson, in 2nd place with a total of 22732 units, and, Chris Leonardos finished in 1st place with a total of 26325 units.  Chris has now broken his own club record with 8 Club Champion titles, winning his first title in 1998.

The next angling competition season is scheduled to commence in Spring 2022 and the RPIAC’s clubroom is located adjacent to the Rhyll boat ramp.  Members and visitors are welcome on Fridays (from 5 pm) and competition weekends coinciding with weigh in.   For further information about the club, events, competitions, and rules, please visit the website:  www.rpiac.com

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