Anyways, I got the car started and ventured across the A39 and down the bouncy road to the fishery.
I arrived not long after 8:30 and a couple of teams had drawn, myself and Steve Fouracre waited for the 3rd member to arrive before we did the draw. Soon enough Eric arrived and I did the draw this week. With pegs 3 and 6 already gone we hoped for a draw with an island gap, so putting one of us on peg 37 and the other on about peg 11. I drew peg 9 for Eric, not bad. Peg 21 for Steve, not bad as won section in the last round, and I was left with peg 35 which is a nice summer peg but hasn't produced much this autumn or winter when I have been down there, but it has options.
Team Sedges had a nice draw with Jamie having a 'boards peg' on peg 37, Phil was up on peg 24 with the wind blowing up that way and Keith was on around peg 11 and had the edge of the 'boards' opposite-ish Jamie's peg.
For company I had Jamie to my left and he had Rich Coles to his left, to my right and barely visible was Mosella's Pete Wild on peg 32 and he had the last man in our section to his right in the form of Jim Jenner (Somerset Carpenters).
|Peg 35 Avalon, front view|
|Peg 35 right hand edge, Avalon|
The wind was up the lake, pretty much straight down, so I had it left to right.
I went about setting my kit up, using my Matrix bait hood to protect the maggots (lives and deads, plus pinkies) and pellets (micro, 6mm and 8mm).
I had mixed my groundbait already on Saturday. I opened a small tin of corn and had some caster.
I assembled a small guru feeder and 3 pole rigs. Jamie and Pete only set up a feeder rod each, as did a few others.
One pole rig was for silvers at topkit length to my right, another was a cover-all rig for 7m in front as this was the max I could manage in the wind. Lastly I set up a heavier rig for 13m downwind towards, but not too close, to empty peg 34.
At the all-in I cupped 3 balls of bait out in front, mostly groundbait but with a few freebies.
I fed a cup of dead maggots with a few corn grains and odd pellet down towards p34
I flicked a few maggots at the topkit length by my right hand reeds.
I started on the feeder. I stayed with the feeder for an hour and never had a bite, tried maggots, caster, corn and various pellets all without a touch.
Meanwhile Jamie had landed several carp, and lost a few, and was well clear of the other 4 of us in the section.
So an hour in I tried my pole line in front, no joy. My topkit line also stayed biteless.
I re-fed the long edge rig but decided to leave it a touch longer before trying it, so it was out on the feeder by the island for another 30 minutes.
It was soon approaching 12 o'clock and it seemed that pretty much everyone on the opposite bank had a few fish, I could see team-mate Steve up on p21 catching a few, but so was Keith Clapp and Tom Mangnall (p6).
In my section it looked Pete had 1 little carp as had Jim, Rich Coles had a couple silvers. Jamie was miles ahead.
It was 12:10 that I had my 1st fish, a small perch on the topkit. This was followed up by a rudd and then a roach was snaffled by a pike.....hmmm, I don't see any all summer here and gets myself pestered in two rounds of this series.
Over the next 45 minutes I popped a few roach and rudd in the net from the topkit line.
A look downwind towards p34 saw a couple small fish before the elastic was taken from the pole as a carp headed for the wooden structure a few yards from where it was hooked.......I won the battle though and a small carp of maybe 1.5lb was netted. I did crush my number 6 section though, luckily I had a spare.
I then had a fruitless hour or so as Jamie put more fish in to his net, but the rest of us struggled on.
It was now nearly 2pm and the match was due to finish at 3pm. I had a nice perch around 1lb was caught from the topkit line and lost another decent fish, possibly a perch, maybe a skimmer. That annoyed me a touch, but it happened again, so I changed the hook and rested that line. Still nothing on my feeder rig.
It was at this point that Rich had 3 carp in three chucks to move maybe into 2nd in section, Jim also had a couple more carp and a couple ok skimmers in the last hour.
Pete also had another couple carp, but he said that they were small ones.
As the 30 minutes left point passed I hooked into another little carp down my long edge line and a slightly smaller mirror was popped into the keepnet. Another perch of 8oz was landed just before the all out. I guess I had maybe 3lb of silvers and similar of carp. But it'd be close between me and Pete for section last....
I packed up and loaded the car before following the scales, enjoying the banter as we went.
I didn't pay too much attention to the weights, but there were nice weights along the whole opposite side to me. Eric did have 17lb+ of silvers and that looked to top that category on the day, but he was probably 4th in section.
Steve had 50lb from peg 21 and looked to have won that section ahead of Phil Clapp on peg 24 who lost plenty of fish during the day.
In my section Jim Jenner had 7lb+, then Pete had around 5lb, I managed to pip Pete with around 7lb.
Jamie had 55lb+ and then Rich Coles' effort gave him the default section win with 11lb I think.
1st Nigel Hopkins, Fu Fighters, 64lb 7oz
2nd Jamie Cook, Sedges, 55lb 2oz.
3rd Tom Mangnall, Mosella UK, 54lb 14oz
4th Steve Fouracres, Young Ones, 50lb 9oz
5th Keith Clapp, Sedges, 42lb 15oz
6th Phil Clapp, Sedges, 36lb 2oz
Silvers - Silver peg winner
1st Eric Fouracres, Young Ones, 17lb 2oz
Teams on the day:
1st Sedges - 12pts
2nd Fu Fighters - 10pts
3rd Young Ones - 9pts
4th Mosella UK - 7pts -- 73lb
5th Somerset Carpenters - 7pts -- 42lb 11oz
So a hard day for a few of us, but some decent weights were had. It was a little testing though, what with the wind and lack of attention to my feeder fished baits,
Next weekend see's the Viaduct Xmas match and the 3rd round of the Avalon Teams of 3.
Until then take care.