Organisers say although numbers were down this year the weekend's Deniliquin Fishing Classic was the biggest event yet.CASS SAVELLIS February 18, 2014 4:55am
The Deniliquin RSL Fishing Club XXXX Gold Fishing Classic keeps getting better each year, and the weekend’s was no exception.
While official angler numbers did not exceed last year’s record event, organisers believe there were actually more people involved in the whole weekend this year.
A total of 1519 registered anglers took part in the 17th annual classic, taking advantage of 20km of extra river zoning in which to catch a winner.
Short of the classic’s record of 1701 anglers in 2013, organisers say numbers were hampered by the devastating bushfires in Victoria and possibly the rain.
There were 1189 adult and 330 junior registrations, all trying their luck at catching the longest Murray cod, yellowbelly or carp to claim a prize.
There were 65 legal-sized cod and 57 legal-sized yellowbelly landed over the two days of fishing on Saturday and Sunday, again down on last year’s catch.
River levels steadily lowered throughout the weekend, from 2.49m on Friday to 2.4m on Saturday and then 2.33m on Sunday.
Mild temperatures proved comfortable fishing weather, while 15.6mm of rain on Saturday forced dedicated anglers to brave the wet conditions.
Despite registered numbers, RSL Fishing Club member Andrew Jefferies believes overall attendance at the event was well up on last year.
‘‘Early-bird registrations and junior registrations have both gone up,’’ he said.
‘‘We did have a lot of cancellations due to the fires around Victoria, and the rain may have deterred some people.
‘‘We also found that previously even people who weren’t fishing were registering to try and win a boat.
‘‘With the $5 raffle boat prize format this year, people who didn’t fish just bought tickets for that instead.
‘‘But overall the RSL Club was full again for the Prize-arama and there were at least 2000 people at the family night on Saturday (at Classic HQ on the Edward River Oval).’’
Mr Jefferies said the fishing club was pleased with positive feedback from those who participated.
‘‘We had lots of comments about the quality of the prizes; people were saying they definitely got value for money and will be back next year.
‘‘They also said we kept the meals affordable. We actually sold out of meals on Saturday night, which to me says the event was bigger this year crowd wise.’’
Official event caterer Michael Pitt, from Expressgo, said they served close to 1000 meals on Saturday at Classic HQ, selling out of most items by 9pm.
Former Deniliquin man Brad Smith returned home from Albury to collect the champion angler title for the largest native catch for the 870mm cod he landed from his boat using a lure on Saturday morning.
The adult major prize winner of a boat and motor was Nicole Thorpe.
When teenage sensation Jack Hammond arrived in Tongala with his dairy farming family in January, his name sparked interest in several coaches across the district.
The Yarrawonga Pigeons have secured a vital win over Wangaratta Magpies at JC Lowe Oval in Yarrawonga.
On Wednesday, April 22, 11 walkers from Shepparton Adventure Club travelled to Strathmerton then on to Ulupna Island.
Uniformed police are being plucked from the district’s 16-hour stations to work with one-member stations so officers are not patrolling on their own.
A Rochester woman who stole more than $250 worth of money, cigarettes and food from her workplace of four years has been convicted and fined $500, plus court costs.
The final 25 players have been chosen to represent the Goulburn Valley Football League in their quest to regain the number one football ranking in country Victoria.
A 640 000 bird proposal finally gets the green light from Strathbogie Shire Council.
Record cattle prices were recorded at the Finley Saleyards on Friday
People in rural and remote areas are significantly over-represented in the number of deaths and serious injuries on our roads.
Barooga will host an information forum on the National Disability Insurance Scheme on Tuesday night.
The Deniliquin Rodeo Arena was in full swing for the recent Deniliquin Classic Barrel Race.
GrainCorp has announced an investment of $50 million to increase oilseed crushing capacity and efficiency at its Numurkah facility in Victoria.
Mark Soyer represented Australia at the 2015 IPC Alpine Skiing World Championships in Canada.
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