After 4 pick ups on the trot (forgetting a blank!) I was eager to do the business today and hoping for a kind draw on some fish for a change!
After a hearty breakfast I squeezed into the queue to draw my home for the day, when peg 29 stuck to my hand I was narked to say the least, I even tried turning it upside down and convincing Mark it was peg 62 but he wasn’t having any of it. Peg 29 is on “suicide straight”, I’ve never liked it along here although I have picked up a section in the past.
I got to my peg and decided I’d just have to make the most of it and not let the draw beat me, the weather would try its hardest to do that today! I got dressed and made sure I had the brolly up to try and keep my box and side tray dry. Seeing as I was expecting a grueller of a day scratching for bites I decide to stay faithful to the super light rigs that have done been proud over the last few weeks.
I set up a track rig at 12m towards the far bank trees both left and right, this was a 4x12 KC Carpa Belter, 0.10 mainline, 0.08 hooklength, Size 20 Drennan Silverfish Match and finished with a 6 elastic and pull bung. Peg 29 is quite shallow and I only found just over four foot at the base of the far slope.
I also set up a sedge rig that was a 4x10 KC Carpa Belter, 0.10 mainline, 0.08 hooklength, Size 20 Drennan Silverfish Match, again with a 6 elastic and pull bung. The sedge were shallow again so I set these lines a metre or two back from the sedges where I found two and a half feet or so.
My final line was on my top six towards the tree in my right hand margin, I didn’t expect to catch off here but it would be a bonus if I did.
Feed for the day was dampened micros, 4mm expanders, black swim stim and a pint of whites.
The all in was called at 10am and I shipped out to my hand track swim, tipped in 6 micros and a fruit shoot worth of groundbait and dropped the rig in over the top. It took all of twenty seconds before the float bobbed and I lifted into what felt like a good fish. With fishing so light I took my time and after a very healthy scrap and plenty of elastic stripped out of the bung I slid the net under a lovely 7lb mirror! What a start this was! I shipped out to the same line again, re-fed and the float buried again. This time a smaller F1 about a pound but welcome all the same. I repeated this for the first hour and by the stroke of 11am I had nine fish in the net for 25lb! This was made up a 7lb common, 4lb mirror, 3lb F1 and 6 further F1’s.
The day couldn’t have started any better and I carried on in the same vain although the line did slow in the second hour. I managed 3 fish in the second hour, another 7lber and two F1’s to take my tally to 35lb all in the first two hours!
As often happens when I fish Maple the action slowed right down and over the next 3 hours I only managed 6 F1’s and a few roach by moving through all my swims. I thought I’d have about 40lb by now but knowing what my guessing of weights are like I decided to put my other net in just in case!
The last hour and the bites had all but dried up from the carp and I was getting plagued by roach so decided I’d fish for them and try and keep warm. The rain battered it down from start to finish to hopefully whipping a few roach out would help me warm up a bit. I went out to the left hand track swim, tipped in a dozen maggots and dropped a double maggot hook bait over the top. I had a few roach before I put a further two F1’s in the net to boost my tally. With ten minutes to go the roach had slowed down too but thankfully one final gasp the float buried and I was into my final good fish of the day, time was called “FISH ON” and I slid the net under a 3lb ghosty!
At the end of the match I reckoned to having 40lb in the first net and 6lb in the second net. Bri Clay was winning the match up my weigh with 49lb so it was going to be very close!
I weighed my little net first which went 8lb-13oz, my big net went 47lb-7oz so I’d done it, a total of 56lb-4oz to take the match. Chris Hargreaves weighed a very health 44lb off peg 18 too to come third overall.
So although I could have been beaten by the draw I stuck at it and managed my first win of the year and more importantly making it 5 pick ups in 5 on the Maggotdrowners matches. Even more importantly though, I took another pound off Mr T!
The top 3 looked like this:
1st – 56lb – Peg 29 – Steve Lupton
2nd - 49lb – Peg 55 – Bri Clay
3rd – 44lb – Peg 16 – Chris Hargreaves