Nautilus catches the spirit of game fishing

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Getting into the spirit: Nautilus Marine Insurance’s Damian Pugh (left) tests out the specially-commissioned rods built by Brisbane angling craftsman, Gary Howard.
Getting into the spirit: Nautilus Marine Insurance’s Damian Pugh (left) tests out the specially-commissioned rods built by Brisbane angling craftsman, Gary Howard.

Marine insurer sponsors fishing competition with custom-built rods.

Marine insurer Nautilus Marine is throwing its support behind the annual Inter-club Shield and Reef Rumble competition hosted by the Little Ship Game Fishing Club in Queensland by introducing a new Spirit of the Tournament award.

Held at the club’s headquarters at One Mile, just north of Dunwich on the eastern side of South Stradbroke Island off Brisbane, the event combines traditional game fishing classes with an offshore section designed for reef fishing and pelagics.

Nautilus Marine first supported the event last year as a sponsor but this time around is expanding its involvement to include providing specially-commissioned rods as prizes including one for the person whose actions best reflect the "Spirit of the Tournament" in 2017.

“The camaraderie that exists in this event between competitors pursuing totally different forms of recreational fishing is one of its great attractions.” said Damian Pugh, Nautilus Marine’s national underwriting manager.

“We are keen to promote that goodwill even further so are introducing an award based on camaraderie and sportsmanship, rather than sheer angling ability.

“Last year we saw Garmin’s Reef Rumble deep sea fishing team prepare and cook their catch as dinner for all participants including the game fishing teams - it was a very sincere gesture that drew of lot of praise.

“We are anxious to see that boating spirit grow further and so commissioned expert Brisbane rod builder, Gary Howard to build a number of Nautilus-branded 15-24kg rods with Fuji guides, graphite reel seats and roller tips that can be used for either light game or reef fishing.

“One of those rods will be awarded to the competitor whom the organising committee believes contributed best to building the excellent spirit of the tournament.”

The event caters for member clubs of the Queensland Game Fishing Association, predominantly those from the 10 game fishing clubs of south-east Queensland. Last year, the game fishing section of the tournament saw 60 strikes, 46 hook-ups and 31 fish tagged.

This year’s event will be run from 17-19 February, starting with an informal dinner and briefing on 16 February at the club’s facilities.

The organisers say the tournament is scheduled to coincide with the summer run of juvenile marlin, sailfish and northern bluefin tuna. In addition the wider, deeper grounds are likely to produce large blue and striped marlin for the heavy tackle enthusiasts.

The Reef Rumble section is primarily fished along the offshore ribbons of reef running from the northern end of Moreton Island to the Gold Coast.

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