Obviously with my holiday cancelled it was back on the commercials (well I've got lots of pellets left!) and I was booked in at Cider Farm. A good turnout meant that both Yarlington and Dabinett were going to be used today. Maybe my luck has changed because I pulled peg 7 on Dabinett, one of the flyers on this lake. If you haven't been here before it is basically a peg on a gap in between the 2 long islands. For company I had venue regular Derek Culip on peg 6 (another flyer) and Bristol's finest builder and window fitter Paul Haines on peg 8 (no where as good a peg as mine). Opposite me on 21 was Steve Howells, and the other danger men were John Paige on peg 12 and worst of all Pete Sivell on peg 28. Pete has drawn this peg 3 times now, and has the match record off it.
I was pleased to know a 100lb had come off my peg the day before in a match, and I decided to attack the peg full on with paste at 7 metres, what I thought was a very comfortable distance and one the fish would be happy to come to. The usual 0.18 to size 12 Drennan Nu Hook and Big H float would do for this. I set up a 4x10 PB4 at 12" for pellet shallow and the same float at 2 feet for the margin to my left which I would feed with hemp and corn.
To start the match I fed half a big cup of pellets (4mm, 6mm and 8mm!) at 7mtr and a full big pot of hemp and corn in the margin. I did not feed any pellet across at this stage as I did not want to split the fish, I wanted them all on the paste line! I had a massive fizz over my feed and thought I had fed too much bait, but after the first hour I had taken 15 carp! I was getting a bite or a liner within seconds of the float settling, it was awesome! This put me way ahead of my neighbours and gave me a nice buffer. The second hour and 12 carp graced the net (I think 12 cos I started to lose count and gave up) and just after 2 hours Glenn Bailey rang me from Newcastle and was shocked when I told him how many I had! I had tried mainly topping up with a full Preston cad pot of pellet, but I didn't do this after every fish as it seemed to cause liners and missed bites. I also put in a bigger amount in the big pot occasionally when things slowed, this caused the fizz to return and after a while I'd get a good run of fish.
Half way through the match I decided to put two more keepnets in, this way I could see what I caught in the two halves of the match. This had the usual effect of stopping me catching! In the next 30 mins I managed 2 carp whilst Derek took 10! I managed to get a few more on the paste but I was not catching anywhere near the amount I was earlier. In hindsight I stayed on paste probably 45 mins too long, but this was because I was still getting the float go under but not hitting them or getting the odd fouler and I thought it would come good again. Eventually about just under 2 hours to go I started feeding 6mms at 13 mtrs and went out with a banded 8mm. Within 15 mins I was into carp and by regularly feeding and slapping the rig in I was catching well. However, I did have the odd mishap, as about 5 fish did me in the reeds even though I was a way from them. I thought about going to a heavier elastic but when fishing shallow I don't like heavy elastic and so I just tried to yank the pole behind me quicker. I finished the match by landing a fish after the whistle and should say I took 2 fish from the margin on corn to give the shallow line a rest for 15 mins when it went iffy once, they wouldn't stay on the inside.
Dabinett had fished well and there was talk of the fishery match record being broken, I did not do that, but my 172lb 5oz was my best ever weight at the venue by some way, I guess I had around 60 carp, I did not see the bigger stamp fish that are in this lake and to be fair most people had the same stamp. My nets showed that I caught 98lb in the first 3 hours and 74lb in the last 3. The match was won by Pete Sivell with a new record of 195lb, fair play to Pete he has increased his catch off this peg every time. I had to give him a pound too, but luckily I passed him the one I gained from Andy Curry! As for my neighbours well Derek had 126lb and Paul 88lb so a good days fishing!
1st Pete Sivell 195lb peg 28 again pellet and paste
2nd Tim Ford 172lb
3rd John Paige 131lb peg 12 Dabinett pellet
4th Derek Culip 126lb
The next two weights were also over 100lb, with veteran Rich Coles having 102lb from peg 1. The average weight was 96lb on Dabinett, and I did say that if Gary Cross had tried harder and weighed in more than 47lb we could have hit the 100lb average!
On Yarlington 92lb was top and there was and 88lb and 75lb. Pellet shallow was best but paste had the 75lb weight.
Well that was a nice day, and it was great to be back on the bank again. Next week I have the last round of Tony Rixon's float only series, Tony has told me that if I get a section win on this match then I will be in top 3 for sure. However, my last time at Viaduct in the series saw me have a disaster and that was my only match there this year, gonna need a lot of luck then! Hope you enjoyed your weekend.