The eleventh annual Spar Bloemhofdam Bonanza presented by Eco-Care Trust on 29 April to 1 May 2011 was again a very exciting event.
Although very good weather conditions prevailed throughout the event, the extremely wet weather conditions just before the long weekend resulted in a very slippery North West Parks Board side of the dam. A heartfelt thanks to participants who endured the slippery conditions.
With a tournament value exceeding R1 million and almost 1700 anglers participating in the event, this was again be the biggest annual inland shore and boat angling tournament in South Africa. More than 30km of shore was packed with participants and many boats launched at Sandveld and Northwest.
The Tight Lines Teams Competition held on the Friday was a great success with good bags of carp being weighed. The teams consisted of a maximum of four anglers per team, boat and shore respectively. Only carp as species has been allowed and the bags were restricted to four biggest carp per team.
Team Black Label weighed a bag of more than 28kg to qualify for one of the Big Banger prizes, a boat worth R90 000 sponsored by Danlou Marine, Klerksdorp.
The results of the boats team competition were as follows; first, team Catalyst with a bag of four carps weighing 25,58kg, second team So-What with 22,98kg and third Nollie’s team with 22,9kg.
The team Fishing Myself Single took the honours for the best shore team with a bag of 24,38kg kg followed by the team Herold’s Eletric with a bag of 21,2kg and Santie’s team with a bag of 20,28kg.
The SPAR Bloemhofdam Bonanza started simultaneously with the Tight Lines Teams Competition and continued until Sunday morning. Many good fish were caught during this individuals fishing tournament.
A shore angler, Marius Wheeler, took top honours in the Open Division and received R100 000 cash for his effort! He caught a huge carp of 11,55kg and a barbel of 14,14kg to clinch the first prize overall.
The biggest barbel was caught by NH Pretorius and weighed 21,2kg. He has won himself R5000 cash, a barbel calling rod from Blue Marlin, Shimano baitcaster and several other prizes to the value of R10 000.
The second biggest carp was caught by G van Heerden and weighed 8.08kg. He has won himself R5000 cash, two carp rods from Blue Marlin, Shimano baitrunners and several other prizes to the value of R10 000.
The Top Ten Boat angler was WA Nel who caught a carp of 7,18kg. He won shopping voucher worth R4000 sponsored by SPAR and other prizes to the value of R10 000. The second place in this category went to a lady, Adri Visagie, with a carp of 7,16kg and the third place to R Barnard with a carp of 7,14kg.
The Top Ten Shore angler was Marius van der Linde who has won this category with a barbel of 19,06kg. He won the same prizes as WA Nel in the boat category. PJ Lombard came second with a barbel of 18,3kg and Jacques le Gras third with a barbel of 17,48kg.
The SPAR Ladies winner was Carina van der Heever with a barbel of 16,96kg caught from the shore. Petro Potgieter came in the second place with a carp of 6,16kg followed by L van Wyngaard with a barbel of 18,36kg caught from a boat. SPAR sponsored the ladies competition to the value of R10 000 worth of shopping vouchers.
Rohan Kirsten took the top honours in the Junior Division with a carp of 6,14kg, followed by Angelique Taljaard with a carp of 6,04kg and Nathan Jordan with a carp of 6,03kg.
The results were calculated with the Eco-Care Angling Table system that awards points in relation to the weight of a fish species and whether it has been caught from the shore or from a boat. The system has proofed to be a reliable method to determine the best fish caught by an angler in a fishing tournament. The carp caught during this year were more and bigger than previous years and it might be the result of the severe flooding experienced the past season, bringing the big carps downstream in the Vaal River into the dam. However, Bloemhof Dam once again shows that it has the biggest barbel in the country.
Anglers once again flocked from all over South Africa to partake in the SPAR Bloemhofdam Bonanza. All participants received a nice goodie bag and ice with the compliments of SPAR, Pepsi, KWV, Sasko, Dolphin Fishing and several other sponsors. The total attendance of the event was more than 5000 people. The capital inflow from the Bloemhof Bonanza towards Bloemhof and surrounding cities were gladly accepted by business and tourism industry.
Sincere thanks to all the participants, volunteers, SAPS and sponsors who made the event a huge success. All proceeds of the event will go to the Eco-Care Trust, an NGO working in the field of water conservation and other non profitable organisations.