Captain
Ivan Bennett

Member since November 2016 Sydney, Australia
Background
I have been a fisherman since I was a kid, when I developed a love for the seas and everything that lives in and on the oceans. It's my passion! I have been a member of the Sydney Game Fishing Club for over 30 years, and have fished competitively along the East Coast of NSW from Bermagui to Ballina for the various game fish species found along our coast. I started my chartering business in the year 2000.
Techniques
I love all types of fishing and over the years have had experience in all forms of fishing form Fly fishing to Heavy Tackle Game fishing on the Barrier reef. My two loves are Game Fishing for Marlin and Tuna as well as all the other great ocean wanderers and Fly fishing in both salt and fresh water...

Hey, I'm Captain Ivan Bennett

Sydney, Australia
Background
I have been a fisherman since I was a kid, when I developed a love for the seas and everything that lives in and on the oceans. It's my passion! I have been a member of the Sydney Game Fishing Club for over 30 years, and have fished competitively along the East Coast of NSW from Bermagui to Ballina for the various game fish species found along our coast. I started my chartering business in the year 2000.
Techniques
I love all types of fishing and over the years have had experience in all forms of fishing form Fly fishing to Heavy Tackle Game fishing on the Barrier reef. My two loves are Game Fishing for Marlin and Tuna as well as all the other great ocean wanderers and Fly fishing in both salt and fresh water...

My Charter Listing

Excellent
4.9 / 5
(20 reviews)
Sydney
 Instant Confirmation
trips from $1,580

Fishing Reports

Ambition report 26th.November’23
Ambition report 26th.November’23
Nov 24, 2023 Sydney
I took Joe and his wife, from Florida, out last Friday on what turned out to be beautiful day at sea. The sea calm and the rain cleared as we headed out. Joe had experience having caught Sailfish and Mahi Mahi in his home waters in the Carribean. However he hadn’t caught a Marlin and that was his ambition, no pun intended. So we headed out and after hearing of Mahi Mahi around the FAD’s did a couple of circuits around the Sydney FAD with no result so headed out over the twelve mile to the shelf. Just past the twelve the current picked up and the temperature started to climb and the water turning that beautiful blue and 22.5 C. I started to mark bait around the shelf and out to around 140 fathoms but it was very patch and obviously not being harassed. On approaching Browns I saw another boat and it looked like they were fighting a fish which was confirmed when I saw a Marlin jumping. Turns out it was a boat called ‘HotRod’. Later on they told me that they had a 2.5 metre Blue Marlin on board which had sadly died during the fight. Spirits were now high and expectation great. Further out as I was watching the Mutton birds migrating South I could see that some patches were circling and indeed working an area. I concentrated on them for a while and though it was obvious they were on something I couldn’t make out what it was and nothing was marking on the sounder. Subsequently as I move further North I saw several more patches of birds working the same way. I have in the past seen similar behaviour when the Mutton birds were chase Flying fish in that hey scare the fish into taking flight then pounce on them. Then Ron screamed out Marlin! and there behind the short corner was a Striped Marlin coming up behind ‘Evil’ mouth open and ready to eat. Ron dropped the lure back but no hook up. The Marlin came back onto the lure, Ron teased it a little then dropped it back and this time hooked up and the fish took off. It was a very stubborn fish and I actually thought it might be a Blue which stayed deep and made Joe really work for it. However, he did eventually get the fish up and we released a good ninety to a hundred kilo Striped Marlin. It was getting late by then so I turned for home anticipating my next trip out into the blue. Tight lines, Ivan
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Ambition Report 30th.October’23
Ambition Report 30th.October’23
Oct 29, 2023 Sydney
At last something to write about. Though over the last couple of weeks a few Striped Marlin have shown up the last couple of times I’ve been out have been a misery of bad weather with cold and green water. Though there was plenty of bait around there was little if any bird activity… the water just seemed dead. Yesterday was a whole different kettle of fish, no pun intended. I headed out towards Browns put the gear in at the Twelve Mile, trolling out from there. The water wasn’t a great colour but at least it wasn’t that dirty green and the temperature was increasing with the current coming in from the East and the bait was building up. I was several miles North of Browns when I saw a heap of birds working, they weren’t going South with their migrating mates. It took a fair while to catch up to them since out there the current was going North and with the Northerly wind it made for a less than comfortable ride. I did catch up eventually and found they were chasing a school of Striped Tuna one of which took old ‘Brad’. I decided then to go downwind to Browns to ease the pain for one of the guys who was not feeling very well. As it so happened after only a few minutes we had a double strike on the riggers with ‘Lumo’ and ‘Illusion’ hooked up on Yellowfin. The fish were around twenty to twenty-five kilo’s. We got one in but sadly lost the other at the boat when it took a last desperate run. On the radio I heard there were a couple of boats around the ‘Bait Station’ and that they were working over large schools of bait. I stayed out in the deep water hoping to find the Yellowfin again. As I went North the temperature increased and the current swung more to the East. I didn’t find the ‘fin again but around mid-day a solid strike on ‘Lumo’ resulted in a good-sized Striped Marlin charging in at the boat. We actually thought it was coming aboard when it slammed into the starboard corner forcing Mark to duck for cover. It was a very active fish and Ace who had been very sick all day had to hand the rod over to Mark who brought it to boat. I kept trolling North to give us a better run home and on the way marked incredible amounts of bait, the sounder virtually blacking out. Then again from eighty five to sixty fathom found birds and dolphins rounding the bait up. With all the bait out there and with that warm Southerly current pushing down it can’t possibly be too long before the scene comes alive. Optimistic! maybe, too optimistic! probably but you never never know. I also had confirmation from Rob the owner of ‘On Call’ that they had caught a good-sized Mahi Mahi and saw a couple of Striped Marlin wide of the shelf on Sunday too. This reminds me that over the years large Mahi Mahi have become a common capture during November. To me indicating the warm edge is not far away. Tight Lines, Ivan
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Ambition report 15th.September'23
Ambition report 15th.September'23
Sep 13, 2023 Sydney
I went out yesterday with Daniel's Group, American soldiers here for the exercises, again not really confident, especially after looking at the SST charts. They were not showing any real feature. No temperature breaks, in fact hardly any temperature variation between shore and a thousand fathoms. The only reasonable feature being the zero line was reachable. Anyway, I went out despite the SST’s hoping that because of their low resolution I’d be able to find something to work with. We put the lures in at the Twelve Mile, always the chance of an early season Marlin there, and worked our way out. As I neared the shelf I got a call from ‘Finfinder’ telling me they had landed a Yellowfin of around fifteen kilo’s wide of Browns. Well, that was incentive enough and I headed off that way. There were plenty of Whales, Dolphins and Pilot Whales to see but bait and birds were scarce. Still we continued on getting out to the thousand fathom line sadly with no result, so headed back in. On the way in I saw a ‘bust up’ but by the time I got there it was all over. I worked the area for a while however they never came up again so continued on my merry way. ‘Finfinder’ had also found nothing out wider so was also on their way back in. Just as I noticed them on the horizon I saw another ‘bust up’ and this one was close by, as I skirted the area we hooked up. I called ‘Finfinder’ in and within minutes they also hooked up. Both fish eventually landed and both roughly the same size, 25 to 30 kilo’s. Interestingly the Yellowfin we caught had been eating Sauries which were hardly digested. Yet in all the time we trolled the area we never saw a single sign of Sauries. We both worked the area for quite a while with no result. So, there are still some Yellowfin around and should make it interesting for this week-end’s Sydney Game Fishing Club’s Monster Mako Tournament since there is a major prize for both the biggest and most tagged Yellowfin. Tight lines, Ivan
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Ambition Report 9th.September’23
Ambition Report 9th.September’23
Sep 7, 2023 Sydney
Went out last Thursday with Chuck, his wife and son on board from New York State. I was not very optimistic about the day. The weather wasn’t as good as expected in fact verging on horrible and recent fishing reports were hopeless. There were a few Yellowfin off Kiama and further South and the Marlin and Yellowfin reports I’d heard from the Port Stephens area had dried up. However, on the way out I did hear a couple of boats fishing inshore catching what sounded like some good Snapper. When I went past the 12 mile there was one boat there and with the North Easterly already doing fifteen to eighteen knots and the residual sea from the day before it wasn’t pleasant, so I can’t imagine they stayed there for very long. Chuck and his family were still happy to be there, so we continued on. I went North to at least get a comfortable ride home. It really wasn’t looking good. No bait schools around the shelf, no birdlife to mention and only eighteen degrees water temperature with no breaks, but there were lots of whales. I got a huge surprise when in two hundred fathoms the rigger went off with what appeared to be a good fish running hard, sadly it dropped off just as quickly. Then in around three hundred fathoms I saw a heap of Gannets sitting on the water with some occasionally diving in. As we drew closer I saw there was a big block of wood with a big Mako lying under it, a good sign for next weekend’s Mako Tournament. I passed the lures close to the block of wood and to my surprise a school of Mahi Mahi charged in. The SST was only eighteen degrees and the water green. We ended up with two nice Mahi Mahi before they spooked. I worked the area for a while but nothing else appeared. Further on we got a good hit on the shotgun and line screamed off, this was a Yellowfin. After a good fight Chuck’s son brought it to gaff for a very happy and tired angler. And so ended the day. The wind had picked up to over twenty knots and the decision was made to head for home - nice down hill run it was too. That’s how it goes what looked like it was going to be a futile day ended well with the guys catching their biggest fish and something to eat to boot. Tightlines, Ivan
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Ambition report 17th.August’23
Ambition report 17th.August’23
Aug 16, 2023 Sydney
It is fair to say that this winter’s fishing has been unusual to say the least. Earlier on, just a few weeks ago we had a run of big Yellowfin, what I have heard called the Fijian Yellowfin. It would be interesting to know if these fish have actually come in on a current of tropical origin it would go a long way into explaining the appearance of some of the other warm water fish we have seen lately. At the same time as these Yellowfin, I will call them the Fijian Yellowfin, turned up we experienced a very short run of Bluefin with several over one hundred kilo’s caught. Yet at the same time there were a couple of Blue Marlin and Striped Marlin taken, sighting of Mahi Mahi and the weirdest of all more than a few Spearfish caught. So, a strange mix of warm and cold water species. At present we are catching smaller Yellowfin in the twenty five to forty kilo range though a couple of bigger ones have been taken. In the past these smaller fish were found in large schools, often busting up, and when you found them you’d get multiple hook-ups. However, lately to find the fish you have to cover a lot of ground and the hook-ups are from blind strikes in the middle of nowhere with little if any bird activity to indicate their presence. The last time I was out, a couple of days ago, we caught a couple of thirty kilo ‘fin. The first in three hundred fathoms South-East of Browns and the second in seven hundred fathoms on the same line. There were few birds around in fact for all intents and purposes the area looked barren. What was of interest was that the fish had been eating what looked like baby octopus or squid, hard to tell at the size they were, about two centimetres long and transparent. It amazed me that the fish were feeding on really small bait and yet still took old ‘Brad’. Tight lines, Ivan
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Ambition report 2nd.July’23
Ambition report 2nd.July’23
Jul 1, 2023 Sydney
After checking the weather reports and seeing three different scenarios I thought I’d give Mikko and his friends the option to postpone. However, the lure of the fish ruled and the decision was made to go on out and see what the weather does. Exactly what we used to do before ( in the old days ) before everyone had computers and GPS. The plan was to head out to where some fairly slack water was edging up to a slightly warmer and faster Southerly current. When we headed out the weather was quite good but at around 10:30 the South Wester started to show it teeth and that combined with a building Southerly swell in the warmer water made it quite ugly. I worked the edge for a while unsuccessfully and since couple of the guys were decidedly green I moved back into the slack water which was marginally calmer and headed to where we had caught the fish on the last trip. We had just reached the general area when we had a double hook up. It’s amazing what a shot of adrenalin can do. All hands were on deck and ready to go. The rough sea made it tough going but both fish around the 30 to 40 kilo’s mark were brought in. Meanwhile the South-Easter had dropped off a little so I headed back out to sea and was rewarded with another double hookup and almost twin Yellowfin of the previous pair were brought on board. Rob hadn’t even reset the gear when we had another strike and while that was happening something grabbed my teaser and was stripping line off the teaser reel. I have never had a Yellowfin do that, plenty have hit the teaser but none have tried to escape with it. I guessed it might have been a Marlin but not having seen anything, who knows. In the mean time the wind had turned to the South and picked up again. So, with five Yellowfin aboard and a happy crew I started trolling home. Tight lines, Ivan
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Customer reviews

Rating summary
Excellent
4.9 / 5
out of 5 stars from 20 reviews
Boat
Excellent
4.8 / 5
Crew
Excellent
5.0 / 5
Experience
Excellent
4.9 / 5
Photos & videos by reviewers (28)
Very nice charter
Very nice charter
Very nice charter
+25
Angler rating
17
2
0
0
0
Anglers claimed
Good experience
94%
Friendly captain
100%
Recommend this charter
95%
Appropriate for children
73%
Satisfied with the boat
100%
Caught fish
81%
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5 of 20 reviews
Nancy G.
Excellent
5.0 / 5
Experience:
Excellent
5.0 / 5
Boat
Excellent
5.0 / 5
Crew
Excellent
5.0 / 5
Overall

Dream come true!

VERIFIED   NEW  10 Hour Game Fishing on November 24, 2023
Captain Ivan and Deckie Ron made my husband’s dream come true….he caught a Marlin!!!  During the “fishing” time onboard,...
Nancy G. recommends Ambition Charters
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Nancy G. recommends Ambition Charters
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1 person finds this review helpful
You and 1 other person found this review helpful

MARK P.
Excellent
5.0 / 5
Experience:
Excellent
5.0 / 5
Boat
Excellent
5.0 / 5
Crew
Excellent
5.0 / 5
Overall

Stripped marlin and yellowfin tuna oh my!!!

VERIFIED   10 Hour Game Fishing on October 28, 2023
The Ambition Team was great and very accommodating for weather reschedules.  Once on the water they did not disappoint. ...
MARK P. recommends Ambition Charters
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Zachary K.
Grand Junction, Colorado
Excellent
5.0 / 5
Experience:
Excellent
5.0 / 5
Boat
Excellent
5.0 / 5
Crew
Excellent
5.0 / 5
Overall

Best Charter for those who want to fish

VERIFIED   10 Hour Game Fishing on December 10, 2022
Captain Ivan and Ron have decades of offshore experience fishing and it shows.  After a cooler early summer the fishing had...
Zachary K. recommends Ambition Charters
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Kane K.
Bozeman, MT
Excellent
5.0 / 5
Experience:
Excellent
5.0 / 5
Boat
Excellent
5.0 / 5
Crew
Excellent
5.0 / 5
Overall

Full day trip with family

VERIFIED   10 Hour Game Fishing on March 13, 2023
Very good communication with the Captain leading up to the trip. Had a lot of fish action all day. Several striped tuna, yellowfin...
Kane K. recommends Ambition Charters
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Kane K. recommends Ambition Charters
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David D.
Sydney, New South Wales
Excellent
5.0 / 5
Experience:
Excellent
5.0 / 5
Boat
Excellent
5.0 / 5
Crew
Excellent
5.0 / 5
Overall

Full day Game fishing with Ivan

VERIFIED   10 Hour Game Fishing on January 8, 2023
It was the best day of our life. Ivan pit is on the Marlin all day long. Rise 12 Marlins, hooked up 7 and landed 4. It’s...
David D. recommends Ambition Charters
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