12 Apr 2013

The biggest fish caught at this year’s Hibberdene Skiboat Club Couta Classic weighed in on the first day of this popular competition held over Easter and the next 24 hours were nailbiting for the anxious angler and his crew.

Shaun Posthumus of Port Shepstone’s big Couta tipped the scales at 28.65kg to head the leader board overnight, with team-mate Noel Allchid snapping at his heels with a 27.5kg beauty.

While the team’s huge excitement on the Saturday night was mixed with anxiety at the thought of bigger fish being hooked the next day – they enjoyed the festive evening activities with the record 350 anglers, family and friends in the giant marquee.  Shaun’s fish was auctioned for R10 700 which was donated to charity along with an inflatable boat with a 5HP Mercury outboard which brought in R18 500. The proceeds of a 4.5-litre Limited Edition Wellington bottle of brandy went to the life guards covering the competition.

Sadly for the rest of the competitors, the weather turned on the 2nd day making it difficult to launch and very few boats braved the tough conditions. Just to prove that nothing much stops a keen angler from fishing though, a total of 672.50kg of Couta weighed-in over the weekend.

Weigh-in cut-off at 3pm on Sunday could not come fast enough for Shaun who was overjoyed at hooking the biggest “fish” of all - an Ace Glider 530 with 2x 115HP Mercury motors on trailer worth R540 000 from Boating International and Stick A Tile - with One Year Complementary insurance from Club Marine. Team-mate and 2nd place winner Noel Allchid took home a Lowrance HDS-7 Touch unit and a Lowrance Sonic-Hub.

A Development Team was entered into the competition co-sponsored by Hibberdene Ski Boat Club and Boating International.  Skipper Wayne Harrison took the first-timers out to sea and Beke (Illovo Sugar), Xolani (Hibiscus Coast Municipality) and Simphiwe (Sharks Board) loved every minute of it. Surprisingly none of them was sea-sick and while they caught some fish they were too small to weigh in. 

In the interests of conservation, Chairman and organiser Lyle Fraser and his committee arranged an aircraft to keep an eye on the protected waters off the Sicombi River. One competitor was caught fishing in the area and was disqualified from the competition for life.

Club Marine’s lucky draw competition held on Friday evening was won by Craig Bell-Roberts from Umzumbe.