35th annual Sherron Clarke Memorial Carp Derby held

John Seabrook, left in photo presents the Sherron Clarke Memorial Carp Derby first place trophy to the team made up of Ben Seabrook, Ken Hartley, John Jones and Ezra Jones.

GORE BAY—It is truly a long time Manitoulin tradition that everyone who participates in the event eagerly look forward to every year. The annual Sherron Clarke Memorial Carp Derby drew a total of 12 (49 participants) this past weekend.

“This is the 35th year for the derby,” stated John Seabrook, lead organizer of the annual event, at the awards ceremonies held at the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 514 in Gore Bay.

This year’s derby included six young carpers including Seth Cooper, Noah Thorpe, Cody Woods, Avery Nodecker, Ezra Jones and Anthony Dearing, who harvested his first carp and got first choice at picking one of the prizes donated by Mike Steele for the event.

For this year, “we’ve made things easy as we have one cup that the winner of the derby now receives,” said Mr. Seabrook.

Finishing in first place was the Ben Seabrook team which garnered 54 points in the derby. The winning team included Ben Seabrook, Ken Hartley, John Jones and Ezra Jones.

Finishing in second place was the Dustin Woods’ team, which also included Craig Merrylees, Richard Middaugh, Darren Nodecker, Cody Woods and Avery Nodecker, with 43 points.

Third place went to the John Seabrook team which garnered 41 points. Along with Mr. Seabrook the other members of the team included Kim Chatwell, Jay Labranche, Ryan Labranche, Tom McEwen and Noah Thorpe.

The largest fish prize went to Richard Middaugh (a member of Dustin Woods’ team), who harvested a carp weighting 29 pounds 12 ounces.

The award for the smallest fish went to John Jones (a member of the Ben Seabrook team), with a catch of three pounds, two ounces.

“Every year we give out an award to the team that collects the most unique garbage out of the water during the derby,” said John Seabrook. “This year’s winner is Scott McPhee of team number one (which also included Bill MacDonald) who brought in an antique hay grappler and ceramic insulator.

The prize for the most fish harvested on Saturday, 28 carp, was won by the Dustin Woods’ team. The prize for the team having caught the most fish Sunday, 23, was won by Ben Seabrook’s team.

“The Don Chilton Mystery draw weight prize was won by team number 12, Eddie Merrylees team (which also included Kevin Merrylees, Morgan Edwards, Bob Hore and Seth Cooper),” said John Seabrook. This team prize was to have its entry fee for next year paid for.

“There are a number of people we would like to thank here today,” said Mr. Seabrook. “The Legion for letting us use their hall for the awards ceremony; Mike Meeker and Blaine Osterkruger for the use of their truck and taking the carp. The carp are utilized and the support Mike and Blaine provide is super important to this derby as the fish are used for Meeker’s Magic Mix.”

Mr. Seabrook acknowledged “Bruce Third for offering his weekend to be shore helper. Bruce was filling in for Dougal Campbell, long time derby member.”

“I have a small presentation to make to a very important member of our team,” said Mr. Seabrook, in presenting a gift to Bev Chatwell.

On Saturday, 94 carp were harvested, along with three dogfish. On Sunday 54 carp were harvested, along with one dogfish.