Man­grove Jack to kings of bill­fish

Pilbara News - - Sport - Alicia Per­era

The 2016 Arg­onaut Bill­fish Shootout saw a team in­volved for years and a long-term fix­ture of the top five fi­nally break through and claim top hon­ours for the first time.

Man­grove Jack were an­nounced over­all cham­pion team of the fish­ing tour­na­ment at the fi­nal pre­sen­ta­tion on Mon­day for snag­ging mar­lin and sail­fish to the sum of 5250 points.

Crew mem­ber Trent Stan­ley, who has been fish­ing as part of the team for six years, also won cham­pion male an­gler.

He said af­ter be­ing the run­nerup team for sev­eral years, “fi­nally to come through with the goods is re­ally good”.

“Our stats for the week­end were very good. We didn’t drop too many fish,” he said.

“This year our tac­tics were dif­fer­ent. We used dead­baits with cir­cle hooks all week­end, trawl­ing with dead­baits, and hookup rates were 100 per cent, so cir­cle hooks are the way to go.

“That was the big key for us this year.

“The boys did some re­search into how to rig up baits, and how to change the ways to rig baits more suc­cess­fully.”

The team won a $3000 cheque along with their name on the tro­phy and brag­ging rights for the year.

The Wench and Tourettes rounded out the top three teams of the com­pe­ti­tion.

Other win­ners were Party of Five’s Kate McLeod, who won top fe­male an­gler for the fourth year run­ning, and Ben Thomp­son, 10, for cham­pion ju­nior male.

About 40 bill­fish were caught over the three-day event, down on last year.

Favourable weather con­di­tions held out over the week­end and an­glers made it into safe har­bour on Mon­day af­ter­noon be­fore a storm hit in the evening.

Only the fi­nal pre­sen­ta­tion was af­fected, with par­tic­i­pants forced into the top room of the Hamp­ton Har­bour Boat and Sail­ing Club to hear the win­ners an­nounced.

The speeches in­cluded celebrity guest Glen Jakovich con­fess­ing the week­end had got­ten him “hooked” on bill­fish­ing, and Arg­onaut Ma­rine Group man­ag­ing di­rec­tor Kim Lyons mak­ing a sur­prise an­nounce­ment they would con­tinue as the com­pe­ti­tion’s ma­jor spon­sor in 2017.

Com­pe­ti­tion com­mit­tee chair­man An­drew Car­pen­ter said the 2016 Shootout had been a suc­cess and thanked its spon­sors for their sup­port.

Pic­tures: Alicia Per­era

The 2016 Arg­onaut Bill­fish Shootout win­ning team Man­grove Jack.

Tas­min Kyle, 15, presents over­all cham­pion ju­nior male Ben Thomp­son, 10, with his award.

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