Auckland Regional River Championships - Competition Report.
Held on the Ohinemuri River, this was the first competition since the World Championships in Slovakia and the Ladies World Championships in Canada and, although most of the Fly Ferns were still overseas, several of the Silver Flies took part.
It was star performer Hugo Pearce who followed up his sensational 8th placing at the Worlds by taking the title.
After the first day, there was a 4-way tie for the lead going into the last session, which meant the pressure was on and Hugo continued his great form to dominate the last session and win, Silver Flies team-mate Billy Thrupp claiming third place.
There were also a number of SFFNZ new members participating in their first event and it was one of these, Tom Johnson from Hamilton, who turned in a brilliant first competitive performance to split the two Internationals and finish runner-up.
Sports Fly Fishing New Zealand would also like to welcome the other debutants, Simon Thomas and Rory McPherson.
The top performing female was Ivy Carter-Morrison, who finished eighth overall and James Fuller had the largest rainbow at a cracking 55 cms.
Hugo mainly fished Euro style with pheasant tails and thread flies tied on size 18 Hanak 450 hooks and small beads up to 2.8mm, mainly in a copper finish. He said “it was important to work the water really thoroughly, and cover even unusual lies to pick up extra fish. They wanted a really natural drift and it was important to wade into the right position to present the flies well. I took some fish by going back over the best areas with a wet line. I would like to thank SFFNZ and organiser Aaron West for running an excellent event”.
Aaron said “the river was in good condition, and apart from some rain on Saturday afternoon, the weather was excellent, and the fish were in great condition and full of energy. I would like to thank Hugo and Billy for helping mark out the beats and organize the event.”
Fish numbers were up from last year with just over 100 fish caught and released
From left Thomas Johnson 2nd, Hugo Pearce 1st, Billy Thrupp 3rd
3rd placed Billy Thrupp in action.