Warlingham and District Anglers' Society
Viaduct Fishery, Somerton, 30th May to 1st June 2018
Once again we found ourselves at the beautiful Viaduct fishery for another great three days. For the first time, we actually had some rain to contend with, but it didn't spoil the enjoyment too much.
There was a full house of 18 again, with the usual format of aggregate total weight over the three days, with a separate aggregate silvers pool. This time the team challenge was three teams of six, ably led by former stars at the venue, Sam, Doc & Gary.
Day 1 on Cary was a bit of a challenge as usual. Whilst the weights look OK, with the average size of a carp around 10lb, it does not mean lots of fish! Paul Oliver drew the peg beyond the spit which does have a decent history and managed to win his first match here fishing bomb and pellet towards the top of the spit and pole with pellet or corn in the margins to take a dozen carp and a few silvers for 118lb, some way ahead of the Doc (you don't say that very often) on 85lb and Tony Morris 51lb.
Day 2 on Spring was the usual draw lottery. Although there are plenty of decent pegs, there are also a lot that can be hard. As usual, it was the island pegs, particularly the ones on the far side which produced best. Bob Docker gave a masterclass of long distance casting, by putting a small cage feeder under the willows at about 50 yards range where he caught a steady succession of carp and skimmers for a creditable 92lb, beating number one son Sam into 2nd place on 80lb from under the jungle of trees at the bottom end. Dave King made a very welcome visit to the frame in 3rd place by fishing "Dave's way". He fished a waggler up the inside margin, virtually under his rod tip with corn and micros to take some decent carp and silvers for 66lb from the top end peg on the far side. Nice one Dave!
Going into Day 3 and it was all to play for. There was only 20lb or so between the top few in the individual contest and just 50lb between the teams. How things can change.....
When the Doc drew favoured peg 123 and Tony Morris 119 opposite and the two top end pegs on the lake, it was set to be a Clash of the Titans. Both fished similarly with a small feeder chucked to the unfished top bank, meat up against the marginal reeds and paste on the short pole line and each option seemed to produce fish regularly. Come the weigh-in and it looked close but it was the Doc who took the honours with 186lb and Tony on 170lb. Paul Oliver was a distant 3rd on 104lb and consequently overtaken by the Doc for top honours overall. That big weight also pushed Tony up to overall 3rd after a quiet first two days with Sam relegated to 4th overall after only drawing one flyer in three days.
With both Tony and Doc in the same team, they also went from last to first for the team contest just to top up their bank balances still further.
Thanks to a great 2nd day bag of 35lb of skimmers, Mick Hull took the Silvers prize. Sam's struggle to find enough carp saw him accidentally come 2nd in the silvers with Jasper 3rd and Keith Harper 4th.
Thanks as always to JP for organising such a great trip. Pity he can't do anything about the Brewers Fayre at the hotel, which just goes from bad to worse.
Viaduct Fishery, Somerton, 10th to 12th October 2018
Viaduct Fishery, Somerton, 15th May to 17th May 2019
Viaduct Fishery, Somerton, 9th to 11th October 2019
Another fantastic trip, brilliantly organised by our esteemed one-armed Match Secretary, John Palmer. Thanks John!
The full results are below and no, there is not a typo. Micky Biles fished a flawless three days to run out overall winner, taking some very big scalps in the process. That is the thing about match fishing, it can be a great leveller and humbling experience. The right peg on the day can put anyone in with a chance, although you still have to get them out. Things usually level out over a three day contest, so to maintain the form to the end was a truly remarkable feat. Very well done Micky!
As if truly blessed, he returned home on the Friday, ready for the Eden Challenge on the Sunday (a 36 peg match) and went on to win that too! I hope he did the lottery that week......