A frosty night on Saturday didn't give me hope of a decent day fishing the last round of the Teams of 3 series at the popular venue just outside of Weston-Super-Mare. On the team front we had a really slim chance of a top 3 place, so it was really about myself, Tom and Titch doing our best to put some face on our showings.
I arrived in loads of time, looked at the lakes and there were areas that had ice covering the swims, but on the Main Lake (where I would be) the aerator was on, now this is a concern for me as I have found that it tends to be that fish get pushed away from the area as the ice-melt gets mixed up with the rest of the water. Sometimes it can have the opposite effect, but more so in the summer.
There are loads of silvers in the lake that should see some bites, plenty of carp too, but they seemed to have shut up shop there. The pegs I fancied were 12 and 14 (well 1 and 15 would be nice) as the far bank gets the sun all day and can be somewhat warmer in the winter.
I wasn't mad on 6, 7, or 11 as these are likely to have been most affected by the aerator and with 7 unlikely to get any sun to warm the top layers during the match, that would be my last choice of peg. It is a good peg though and has been good for top 2 in section for each round, that was before nearly 2 weeks of coldness and a match that finished 30 minutes earlier.
Tom done the draw, drew Titch peg 5 on Hawthorn, but that looked hard with the water level up maybe 10 inches. Tom had peg 6 on Westpool, again not a great peg especially as it was just out of the iced up area. Pegs 11 to 15 would have been better. He told me I was on peg 7, with Mark Wynne on peg 1, the chances of section winning was slimmer than normal.
But I wasn't too displeased and had a job to do.
Arriving at my peg, pretty much everyone told me where to fish and how, but it was all the same and pretty much as the plan formed in my head would be.
|Shiplate, Main Lake peg 7.|
A lead for bread/pellet/meat, again to search the peg.
A method feeder for across towards the island.
Also 2 pole rigs, the 1st was for 14.5m down to my left using Bait-Tech Polony over some maggots. The second rig was my silvers rig for 2 spots at 11m fishing expanders over micros in line with the right edge of the island. The 2nd spot was at the same distance for fishing maggot/pinkie/caster over a little groundbait. This rig was fished on a 0.3g float, 0.12>0.08>6313 size 20 (then 22). My swim though was out of the sun's rays and was somewhat cooler than those opposite and later in the day the pegs to my right.
I wont go into the details on how I fished, but to be fair to myself, I feel I fished a tidy enough match. Started on the method, switched to the lead, tried the waggler. Looked occasionally down the left edge - caught a friggin big branch thing. But mostly spent the day on the pole with pinkies as hook bait.
I went for a wander around 1:30pm and only Mark Wynne on peg 1 had caught, a decent skimmer and few sprat roach, but he'd had them very early in the match. The rest of us were blanking.
The far bank were getting odd small silver and Julian Pinkett was doing the best on that front. Mark Radford on peg 14b had 2 carp. Simon Ryall on peg 11, he'd not had a bite either at this point.
I wandered to see Titch and he'd only had a roach and a small carp, which I think is how he ended.
As we went into the last hour or so the pegs to my right started to see some of the sun's rays and they began to pick up the very occasional roach or skimmer. I stayed in the shade doing my hardest to pick up a bite or 2....they never came and at the all-out I was still biteless. My 1st ever match fishing blank.
As I packed up the sun had started to hit the water in front of me I saw a couple of roach plip on the surface. Ah well.
On the day it wasn't good for us, Tom only had 2 roach from his peg, Titch didn't get anywhere in his section and I blanked, so it would not have been a shock to see us last on the day.
So in the series we haven't generally had the best of times at the draw bag, but Tom and Paul Tidball (my cover in round 3) won the match days from flyer pegs 1 and 15 respectively. Myself and Titch plucked a silvers win each and Tom another section. But when we blew-out, we did it in style!!
However the league's leaders in both the team and overall individual stakes had put 2 section wins and a section 4th on the board in the round (Dave Romain had 57lb+ to win overall on the day, Mark Wynne had 2lb 6oz to take my section and Dave White had 15oz to beat 2 in his section). This meant they won the day on weight comfortably.
Their Up The Farmers team had won the series, had top individual and amassed over £1500 over the 6 rounds. Massive well done those 3.
Local and venue Silvers expert Ron Stark had unsurprisingly won the series Silvers prize.
Wormheads came 2nd in the series followed by the PSV team of Matt Taynton, Lionel Legge and Alan Healey.
So that was that, not sure if I will get a team together for 2017, the limit is 10 teams with 5 booked in already.
I would like to take the chance to thank Steve and Carol for running the series and being their genial selves throughout. Plus those others who assisted in the smooth running of the series. Thank you and see you soon, hopefully more in 2017.
Thanks to Bait-Tech for their support to the team I was in, great products and efforts very much appreciated.
Next Sunday sees me at The Sedges for the Pawlett Legion Club's Christmas Match, I won it last year and also had the golden peg so would really appreciate a repeat result.
Until then. Have fun.