Prizes must be earned
If you're into fishing and have a taste for snapper then a new contest being held next month could have your name on it.
The 2013 Tasman Bay Snapper Classic being run by the Dawnbreakers Fishing Club and Tasman Bay Cruising Club on Saturday, February 16 will be a throwback to a more competitive time with no prizes for simply turning up and participating.
"Unlike other competitions, the biggest fish for the Tasman Bay Snapper Classic will get the biggest prize. No lucky prize draw here campers, it's put up or shut up," co-organiser Troy Dando said.
Designed as a business or club challenge, the classic will see teams of four competing for the top prize of a Furuno GPS Chartplotter worth $3199 from Electronic Navigation Ltd.
"The Tasman Bay Snapper Classic Cup will be presented to the team with the heaviest combination of four snapper, one from each team member, and they will hold the title of Grand Champions for the year," Troy said.
There will also be prizes for the second to tenth heaviest snapper hauls along with prizes for the heaviest kingfish, kahawai, gurnard and tuna.
The contest will include a junior contest for fishers under the age of 13. Troy said because this was the first time the club was holding the classic, entry numbers were limited to 200 to help organisers "get the concept right" so a bigger contest could be held next year.
"We encourage all feedback . . . and welcome any new sponsors who want to get involved," he said.
Troy said the clubs were grateful to all the sponsors who had come on board for this year's classic and the volunteers who were making it possible.
He said the contest came at a time when Tasman Bay's snapper fishery was enjoying its best health since 1977 when commercial fishing took a toll on the species.
"It's just got better and better over the last few years," he said.
"We've been having some massive success out there. Pretty much every weekend guys in the club are catching 20 pounders."
The contest will start at 5am and the weigh-in will be held next to the public launching ramp in Akerston St from 3pm till 5pm. The prizegiving will be held at the Tasman Bay Cruising Club from 7pm but the club will be open for drinks and meals from 5pm.
The entry fee is $20 for adults and $10 for juniors.
To get an entry form email: tasmanbay firstname.lastname@example.org. In the event of unhelpful weather the classic will be held the next day. Call Troy on 027 312 2911 or Chris Millson on 027 229 4762.