I managed to get a guest spot in this popular Saturday series, as a couple of the regulars have gone to Whiteacres for the week. At the draw, I was hoping for an island chuck, as its been a long time since I had one and as a one off appearance, I had only to go for the win. I didn’t fancy 12 or 23, so of course, I drew 23, a peg I’ve had some dismal results from and one framing place, but that was in the summer, with lumps down the edge on paste.
I was nearly pissed off enough with my continued run of crap draws, to not bother, but I decided to give it ago, just in case, by some miracle, the fish had moved into that corner. I left the waggler & lead rods in their bags and set up 4 topkits, one with a shallow rig for carp – more in hope than expectation, a margin rig for carp, a full depth rig to fish dead maggot / pellet at 13m full depth and a Sensas pencil float for fishing close in with caster.
At the all in, I cupped some groundbait and dead maggot in at 13m, started feeding caster at 3m and fed 8mm pellets by catapult into the RH margin, just past peg 22.
First put in on the 13m line with double dead maggot saw a 8oz skimmer in the net, shortly after a roach joined it, then that was it, no more bites in the next 20 minutes. I started to feed 4mm pellet over the top with a catapult and switched to a banded 6mm on the hook, a carp took that and was soon in the net, a smaller skimmer joined it and then the peg went quiet again.
A switch to the short caster line saw a run of decent roach, so I kept on this line and the fish kept coming for an hour or so, when the line went quiet, I rested it and had a look in the RH margin, I took 3 carp straight off and then no more bites. The water temp was 12°C, not quite warm enough to get the fish staying confidently in the shallow margins.
I could see Kev Perry and Rich Lovering catching well, so I knew that I was a long way behind, with no realistic chance of catching them up, their island chuck pegs producing fish as expected.. Mike Owens on peg 25 had been steadily plugging away at the silvers, but his fish seemed to be of a smaller stamp than the roach and rudd I was catching, so I decided to have a push for the silver coin.
I caught reasonably well on the short line again, after its rest, but the next time it went quiet I set up a top four to hand to fish shallow, this produced some decent rudd and roach. A 7lb carp took the single caster on a 22 63-13, it took a while, but that was subdued by the middy purple 4-6 elastic.
The last hour saw me back on the short line and a few more decent roach, the largest one being well over 1lb. I wasn’t confident that I had enough roach and rudd to beat anyone who had managed to find the skimmers and so it proved to be, my 25.01 beaten by two nets of skimmers, although I did scrape into 3rd in silvers and last in the money. The 5 carp went 22.02 giving me a total of 47.03, which I have to admit, was better than I expected from the peg. I guess my messing about for carp and skimmers cost me, had I fished caster for the roach exclusively, I may have managed another 3lb of fish.
1) Mark Bromsgrove 194.09 peg 7
2) Craig Tucker 82.13 peg 38
3) Rich Lovering 80.01 peg 26
4) Kev Perry 77.03 peg 27
5) Brian Slipper 76.08 peg 31
6) Rod Wotton 73.00 peg 29
1) Rod Wotton 28.00 peg 29 (Mainly skimmers10oz – 1lb 8oz)
2) Ivan Currie 27.02 peg 18 (Skimmers, loads of 2oz –6oz fish)
3) Chris Fox 25.01 peg 23 (Roach & Rudd)