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07-26-2015, 12:46 PM #1
Simcoe Showdown 2015 Final Results and Story
The second annual Simcoe Showdown ended with a clap of congratulatory thunder as winner Chris Johnston edged out older brother Corey to take the trophy and $10,000.00 cheque. It might be to time to get a “Congratulations Johnston’s” stamp made as the Canadian bass fishing brothers phenomena continues. During a period when some of Simcoe’s best tournament anglers found it to be tough bite after the week long blow, the Johnston brothers did what they always do. It’s becoming a slogan that sounds more like a commercial, Johnston & Johnston manufactures of big bags of fish. Today it was Chris’s turn as his 2 day total 51.20 lbs just 10/100 better than Corey’s was almost 8 pounds better than third place Paul Climpson, father of Cal Climpson last year’s inaugural winner.
In the history of Canadian tournament fishing there probably has not been anyone that has dominated like the Johnston brothers. Even Bob Izumi who has amassed well over $1million in tournament winnings would have to think hard to remember such a dominant period. Some anglers can dominate lakes for a short period but Chris and Corey can and have competed south of the border and beat the best in the world. Even during a time when information flow and electronics plays a role in equalizing the field, nothing can replace the incredible focus and instinct the brothers have that puts them in a league of their own.
Lake Simcoe is the home waters for many in the tournament industry. There are dozens of anglers that know every rock, ridge, weed patch, and gravel flat that hold big fish. But the brothers are beginning to scare many of the Simcoe specialists away. Then there are those that want to play against the Tiger Woods or Michael Jordon’s of their era and be part of this phenomena. Nick Cousvis, a great angler on any water won the Rice Lake Open earlier this year beating Corey Johnston. These wins now feel a little better when you beat the best.
The rest of us found the lake to be fishing very tough. Normally finding fish is the most important part of putting together a plan. But the frustrating part of this tournament is that fish were everywhere and visible. But getting them to bite was another issue. Every year the lake has a few peak cycles. The post spawn period, if caught early enough is the easiest because smallmouth gorge on crayfish for a period of about 2 or 3 weeks. The end of the cycle can get tough because these fish are so fat and stuffed they become very selective of offering and feeding times. This year the Simcoe Showdown fell right at the end of the cycle and to make matters worse a 4 day high wind and cold front made it unsettling for sight hunters. The week before the lake was on fire with fish everywhere. But after the front fish needed a couple days of hot windless weather to trigger the bite again.
My game plan was to fish more with less run time so I chose a milk run and rotation. We must have seen over 100 good fish over the two days. My problem is having so many spots now it can be paralyzing limiting where and when to fish. I had the pleasure of fishing with Darren Izumi the final day. Darren is a very good angler having been tutored by the best. We always have fun together as I do with father Bob. Saturday seemed like the perfect day. The wind was down, it was hot and humid and there was a low pressure system moving in. This to me spells great fishing. But as the day started we quickly noticed that not much had changed. We could see fish but still a tough bite for big fish. We did have a limit by 12:00 but it was difficult to upgrade as big fish just gave us the finger.
Our weight for the final day was 17.05 and on any normal day I would consider it to be a bad day on Simcoe. But I guess the rest of the field had an even tougher time as the weight moved me into the top 10. Disappointing but that’s the way tournament fishing goes.
This is truly a great event on its own for both pros and amateurs. It also supports the Orillia Food Bank, another great cause. Congratulations to the winning amateur Jeff Buck who won the Lund Boat Package and to the organizers and sponsors for another successful event.
See you the Canadian Open in Kingston, My favorite tournament of the year.
The wall of water and thunder managed to miss most of us until it was time for the closing ceremonies. Then it pour!
Winner Chris Johnston with his Big Fish prize largemouth weighing 6.70 pounds
Chris Johnston and Amateur winner Jeff Buck
Cory Johnston day one leader and big bag of the tournament with 26.10
Bob Izumi with Terry Modesto. Bob ended up 5th after a tough second day. I guess 1 day of pre-fish isn't quite enough anymore to give the Johnston's a run for their money. LOL
Buddy Big Jim looking larger than life and healthy. Andy Pallotta with Bob in the background
Paul Climpson father of last years winner Cal Climpson. Paul finished 3rd and Cal 4th
COMPETITIVE SPORT FISHING LEAGUE
LAKE SIMCOE, CENTENTIAL PARK, ORILLIA - JULY 24 & 25, 2015
Pro ResultsAfter 250 days a year on the water and ice I still feel I need more Time on the Water
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07-27-2015, 08:32 AM #2
- Join Date
- Aug 2009
As always John, great post.
I was watching this on-line. It was very cool to see the Johnston's battle but gotta say, I was really hoping to see a fish-off between them.