Fish­ing with heff

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - CLASSIFIEDS -

THIS year’s Port Dou­glas Mar­lin Chal­lenge from Novem­ber 6-10 is shap­ing up to be one to re­mem­ber. Now in its fourth year the in­ter­est in want­ing to com­pete in this blue rib­bon event is grow­ing with an ex­pand­ing fleet of new world class ves­sels ready to join up and take on the chal­lenge over the four-day com­pe­ti­tion.

It all be­gins on the evening of the Novem­ber 6 with a brief­ing of the tour­na­ment for an­glers and crew and then pro­ceeded by a cal­cutta of the boats at the Lure Restau­rant on the Port Dou­glas Ma­rina board­walk. The brief­ing ba­si­cally out­lines the tour­na­ment rules, the run down for the sail­past of the boats on the first morn­ing, times for the ra­dio sched­ules over the course of the tour­na­ment, safety reg­u­la­tions and a run down of the pre­sen­ta­tion din­ner on the fi­nal night. The whole con­cept boils down to which boat can tag and re­lease the most mar­lin over the al­lo­cated time no mat­ter the size of the bill­fish.

Then the crowd is shown a fea­ture clip of the high­lights over the years, de­signed to play on the com­pet­ing an­glers’ feel­ings and im­por­tantly to pull on their purse strings for the cal­cutta.

The cal­cutta it­self is quite in­ter­est­ing. Rich play­boys buoyed with egos, testos­terone and a fat wal­let make for in­tense bid­ding on the boats. Each boat is auc­tioned off to the high­est bid­der which can end up be­ing thou­sands of dol­lars per ves­sel. At the end of the com­pe­ti­tion the win­ning boat bid­der re­ceives 70 per cent of the to­tal money pooled, the run­ner up re­ceives 20 per cent and club takes 10 per cent to as­sist with ad­min­is­tra­tion costs to run the tour­na­ment.

At the end of the tour­na­ment if two or more ves­sels fin­ish on equal tags then the count back sys­tem comes into play. The first boat to reach the win­ning fi­nal score will be deemed the win­ner. At the pre­sen­ta­tion there are a va­ri­ety of cat­e­gories to win in­clud­ing Cham­pion An­gler, Cham­pion Fe­male, and the Daily Cham­pion Teams. The ul­ti­mate win­ner how­ever is the Cham­pion An­gler who re­ceives the per­pet­ual Leon Thomas Me­mo­rial tro­phy. The fi­nal night at the Lure Restau­rant is al­ways filled with great mem­o­ries.

With record num­bers of boats en­tered this year, and we also ex­pect the record for the amount of mar­lin tagged for the tour­na­ment to top­ple this year. Last year saw 23 mar­lin tagged which stands as the most to date.

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